A Wanna-be Optimist's thoughts on the Man Of Steel Trailer.-By JJK2814

A Wanna-be Optimist's thoughts on the Man Of Steel Trailer.-By JJK2814

I love Superman. Always have. Always will. However, I am worried about Man of Steel. Here are my words. They are not the thoughts of a Nolanite, or a Marvelite. Here they are...

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By jjk2814 - 12/11/2012


Hey guys,
My last article was a scathing, sarcastic, butt-hurt fanboy review of Arrow. I'm over Arrow. I let it go, but don't worry, this won't be like that. Promise. In fact, you will not find a word of sarcasm. If you think you do. NOPE. Thats just me.

I've been thrilled about so many things about Man of Steel for years. I believe in Zack Snyder. I'm not here to praise him or anyone directly. Nor am I here to make rash judgements based on anything I've seen or heard. But I am nervous about this movie. I can't even say I'm optimistic, but I want to be. I really do.

I love Superman. Around the time of Superman Returns I bought that amazing tin 14-Disc DVD set, which I still consider on of the best DVD releases of my collection. It has so much. I am a guy that is not afraid to admit that I get choked up nearly every time I watch "The Story of Superman" narrated by Kevin Spacey.(If you haven't seen it, no matter who you are, you must.)
I love the original films and even liked Superman Returns. It came at a time when I needed it to. It helped me through a rough time. It was EXACTLY what I needed. Believe me, though, I understand it's short-comings. Its faults are blatant to me. Just like Green Lantern, I love it for what it was not what it could have been.

But heres the thing...after Superman Returns and Green Lantern, I don't want to just LIKE the movie. I don't want to just love it for awhile and see it replaced by another, admittedly better Marvel movie. I want this movie, Man of Steel, to move me. I want it to be like nothing I've ever seen before. I don't want another movie that is just what it is. I don't want a movie with the weight of a studio bearing down on it. I want a movie made by a group of people who understand, love, and admire the character. Whether you liked Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy, I believe that's what we got. But for the love of God, if you want to comment, please don't turn this into another Pro/Anti-Nolan debate. Continue reading and debate the next few parts...

Maybe what I just described is exactly what we'll get. Its extremely possible. My worries do come from the fear that this will be "Superman Begins." I understand the need to humanize Superman. I understand the need to de-power him maybe a little. That doesn't mean I agree with it.

Superman is and always was meant to represent what we, as humans could be. Not what we are, or what we would be with an amazing array of powers. He represents an ideal that we can all aspire to.



The thing is; You can't separate The Super from the Man. They should exist in near-perfect harmony. Without making too strong of a Christian metaphor(As I've always believed Superman to be a allegory for Moses, not Jesus) Superman is both god and man. Focus too much on one or the other, and your missing the point. Bottom line, I'm afraid Man of Steel will focus too much on the Man, and let the Super be purely represented by philosophical wonderings and dazzling special effects.

I'll admit, I do, and will appreciate their effort to make this a "real" human story. To me though, as I said before, Superman IS an alien with immense powers raised by farmers to be a good man with an innate sense of right and wrong. Its that sense that I've always seen as his greatest power. It came from Jonathan and Martha Kent, and the blood that flows through his veins from his birth parents. But this is just back-story, origin. I want Superman. I want that ideal. Maybe we, or the general public simply aren't capable of appreciating that ideal anymore. I do actually believe this, but to explain that I would need ten more pages of semi-political, historical analysis. I don't think you should come to this site for that.

Also, I do want a Superman movie that kids would like. I think that should have been an important factor with making a Superman film. Even if many of us are too jaded to fully appreciate Superman, as I admit, might be the entire problem here for me,but to see a Superman movie that I know will impact a young person's mind, let them see the hope Superman represents-That would make me happy. But I think we can all agree, that this movie most likely, will not be that. If you disagree, PLEASE, I beg you to disagree, thats an opinion I would love to hear.

Finally, and this might actually be my most contentious point...I am disappointed that Hans Zimmer is composing the score. I LOVE Hans Zimmer I own over a dozen of his scores. But I want something epic, not just beautiful and etherial. I want a good true theme, not just an atmospheric background. So I hope we get something more Gladiator and less Dark Knight. Scores are important to me, thats all.

Well, I won't ramble on forever. If you read all this, I thank you, and my favorite thing about this trailer is actually this...

A LOT OF PEOPLE SEEM TO LIKE IT.

I like that. I hope this movie makes all of you excited for it as happy and fulfilled as it can. I hope I am one of you. I really do.

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30 Comments
kenjim152 - 12/11/2012, 11:04 PM
Nolan and Snyder both clearly said the movie is not about a "real" Superman, but about how the real world would react to Superman, so i would not be worried. Iremember Luthor saying in the supes bats publico enemies series saying that he hates supes cause he thinks as a farmer when he could rule the world, i guess u missed supes point, at the end he just wants to be a man not a god.
jjk2814 - 12/11/2012, 11:28 PM
I understand how Superman see's himself, but as you said correctly, the film's point of view is how the real world reacts to him, and that is where my worry resides, that how they think the world would react to him is ultimately, potentially too negative and/or dark.

Superman is more than a character. A movie about him, in my view, should be more than just an exploration of his psyche.

I want an uplifting Superman movie, I'll be that blunt about it.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 8:34 AM
@Soto,
Thanks for commenting, like I said though, this isn't a rash judgement, just my feelings about it. Hell, I'm practically begging people to convince me I have nothing to fear.

That being said...

@ManofSuperguy,

Your opinions are totally valid, but c'mon, you'r stretching my words to a point nowhere near what I am attempting to say. "Well, buddy, if you want a Superman movie devoid of emotions, heart, depth, tragedy and pain" C'mon, you really think thats what I'm saying??

And trust me, you don't go 12 years of private education without reading the Bible, so don't assume anything.

@Intruder; I'm thrilled about Amy Adams actually, these days, I don't worry too much about casting until I see it. I was disappointed in Zod being the villain, but again, I'm not gonna jump to conclusions. And yeah...I also really don't want too much of a origin story, but I do understand that IF there was a need for it, it is now.

Thats why I didn't write an article nitpicking the specifics of what I'm not liking so far.

The truth is; This trailer didn't excite me. I'm a guy who lept to his feet at the first Superman Returns teaser, and this made me feel absolutely nothing but apprehension.

I like the general thoughts of the feedback so far; Maybe Soto and SuperGuy(when he's not taking pot shots) are right. The movie may NEED to be darker to show that Superman is the light. But if they make him, himself, thats gonna be a hard sell.


jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 8:36 AM
him, himself, DARK, I mean
Preston - 12/12/2012, 8:59 AM
Intruder

I agree with everything that he said.

I will add that: I like Snyder as a director; however, I hate Goyer as a writer (see: GR: Spirit of Vengeance, Nick Fury, Blade 3, The Crow: City of Angels, DK: Rises, etc). If this were a comic-book, I would stay clear just from knowing who the writer is; however, I like the artist (Snyder). As Intruder points out, "visually it should be the best looking Superman movie ever."


jjk2814

You mentioned, previously, that WB tends to burn us DC fans all of the time. I think DC Comics has a hard time bringing their comic-properties to life on film. When they do they either turn them into gloried toy commercials (See: Batman & Robin), the movie has very little to do with the actual comic-book character (see: Catwoman), or they suck the fun out of the movies by making them extremely serious and killing the magic that is found in the source material (it seems to be the new trend).

Part of the problem is that they don't have a studio dedicated to superhero movies like MARVEL; MARVEL Studios has actual comic artist working for them, they have knowledgeable writers that dedicate themselves solely to bringing comic properties to life (unlike WB). Which means that by the time the superhero movie gets approved, at WB, it's gone through a long and tedious bureaucratic approval process that rapes the characters of everything we have grown to like about them. It's why we get writers that don't know anything about the characters, directors that don't care about the characters, and producers that are only looking to make a profit.

Plus, as many have mentioned, TimeWarner doesn't have to concentrate on making Superhero movies, they have other projects on their plate.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 9:03 AM
well said, Preston. I think you're most certainly right about WB.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 9:09 AM
@SuperGuy, I've never been uplifted by a Marvel movie, I enjoy the hell outta them, but I completely agree, I want WAY more than eye-candy in Man of Steel, let me put it this way,,,

The Shawshank Redemption is my favorite movie of all time. The hero's wife cheats on him, is murdered, he is wrongfully accused, he is beaten, he is raped, but somehow he never loses his humanity, his hope, that little twinkle in his eye that tells the viewer; "Hey, everything is gonna be alright, no matter what happens"

THATS what I want out of Man of Steel. But I'm afraid what we're gonna get is more of an Amazing Spiderman, with a disjointed Origin story followed by a second half that is nearly purely action beat after action beat.
Preston - 12/12/2012, 9:23 AM
@ManOfSuperguy

Hey Noob. It's seems we are always posting on the same posts as well. Are you sweet on me?

Goyer provided the story which tainted, corrupted, and destroyed that movie. Everything he touches turns to s#it. His name alone is an Omen.

I'm not sure why we KnightofSteel and I post together. However, I do find his posts a lot more informative and enlightening than yours.

I'm, almost, sure that he has read more comics than you.

But, you do have a spunky passion that should be commended even if your message is misguided.

I hope that you read: "What's So Funny About Truth, Justice & the American Way?" Action Comics #775, and that it changed your mind about Superman needing an overhaul. If it didn't, we'll just have to continue to disagree about everything it seems; for the exception of the NEW 52 Wonder Woman, that is good stuff. I was never able to get into Wonder Woman regularly before Brian Azzarello came around.
kenjim152 - 12/12/2012, 10:09 AM
@Preston David Goyer has written: kickboxer 2, the pipote masters , Dark city, blade ( the comic book movie that started everything), Jumper,He produced the unborn, and all if them are considered great movies in their genre, i am omiting TDK Trilogy, so I would like to know he could be considered a bad writer.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 11:46 AM
@SuperGuy
For the record,I agree whole-heartedly about Amy Adams. I'm sure she'll be great. And I'm not some purist. I have no problem with a redhead Lois, or a black Perry White, or a muted colored suit.

But...

If I can't judge the movie negatively just from what we've seen, then you most certainly can not, without question declare that Crowe is a better Jor-El than Brando, that it will DEFINITELY be AMAZING. Thats a double-standard, and back to Jor-El, I really like the way you describe the character, and I'm sure you're right that Crowe will be great, he COULD be better. But the way you describe Crowe's Jor-El is exactly how I would describe Brando's.

I can't watch Man of Steel right now and prove you or me right or wrong, but I can watch Superman: The Motion Picture, and I suggest you do the same. Try to look at it in a different light.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 11:51 AM
Ultimately, here's another problem I have...

Mario Puzo wrote Superman; The Motion Picture...how the hell do you top that???

When I heard Russel Crowe's monologue from the teaser all I can say is that it doesn't hold a candle to this:

jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 1:43 PM
Agreed for the most part, but I can completely get over the little things.
aresww3 - 12/12/2012, 1:46 PM
@jjk2814 - Hey man, I praise and love you brother. What a great heart felt article. I´m so fed-up with these flawed, womanising, one-liner spinning, ascerbic, moody, and tortured superheroes. I mean its great and everything, but I think its time for a bit of hope and complex mythologies that give us ideals the way the story of the Gods did in ancient times. However, I think you´re being a bit negative here. From everything I´ve seen Snyder and co, love this material and are looking to knock it out the park. On the other hand we must remember that is a new generation, who are much more grown up, savvy and cynical than the simple times we grew up in. For them to get the superhero mythology and especially what makes Superman such a great iconic story - that makes Wolverine look like a bed time story for people with the emotional intelligence of five year olds - they need to be introduced to the man. My concern is I don´t want them to be introduced to a sulky, self-indulgent, overly tortured Clark, he has to be the trully wholesome, and truelly good individual we know him to be. No wise cracking or father issues etc. But remember, we won´t be introduced to the fully formed Clarke yet. He´s not the mild mannered, goofy reporter quite yet, that may have to be in the sequel. This is the Clarke who is still figuring out his purpose and it looks liuke they´re doing a great job.

For me I´m so glad you wrote this, what a great article, I hope they do Wonder Woman next, seeing the success of this, and showing those marketing big wigs that heroes with a heart that we can aspire to are still very commercially viable.
aresww3 - 12/12/2012, 2:05 PM
Whys everyone hating on Reeves? It was a completely different time, his movie was that generations superman, this is ours.

Also loads of Goyer haters, just cause TDKR wasn´t as good as the Avengers, still, Batman Begins and The Dark Knight are absolutely awesome. Just so much hate. I swear its the same people I was arguing with before TDKR came out, about how Nolan isn´t as good as people say and I don´t like the direction of TDKR, now all those same people who were saying The Dark Knight was the best comic movie ever, are hating on Goyer.
aresww3 - 12/12/2012, 2:08 PM
Knightofsteel - Superman is a hard guy to like, but once you get it and you can see again how you used to see it as a child, when we were all less cynical, you start to appreciate just how fantastic and uplifting a story it is.
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 2:45 PM
KnightofSteel and aresww3, you, you guys I like! Thanks.

@Aresww3,
You're dead on, I am being too negative, I know that, I don't want to be though. I really don't.

Also, I'm not gonna get bent outta shape and make a debate about Chris Reeve's Superman, but like you, I really can't and don't want to understand the negativity towards him and those movies. I find it borderline immature and disrespectful actually. Everyone has an opinion they're entitled to, but I think the trend these days is always jump onto whats "newer,better, faster" and toss aside something that didn't see its first home video release in DVD format.

I also don't want to admit that I'm that much older than a lot of the folks on this site ;)
aresww3 - 12/12/2012, 3:23 PM
", but I think the trend these days is always jump onto whats "newer,better, faster" and toss aside something that didn't see its first home video release in DVD format."

So true; I´m not that old, but people just a bit younger make me feel like I really am. Watch when the next Batman comes out, Nolan will be lambasted for being lame, the gagdets were so uncool, the batmobile was more like a tank not a car, and all this crap. People just don´t want to understand things in the context of their time and appreciate it for that. For instance I still think the old Hulk TV movies are the best Hulk films to date, and Bill Bixby makes the new guy look like a wet blanket. In fact I might even watch that right now. ;)
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 6:00 PM
HA! Very true, hell, I'm probably not as old as I think I am either, but its them people just a few years younger that make me feel like Mr Rogers!
jjk2814 - 12/12/2012, 8:06 PM
^^^Yeah, I should have known that the comment section would become that conversation. Thats okay though, agree or disagree this has been a pretty darned civil discussion all around.
gamecreatorjj - 12/12/2012, 8:49 PM
The reaction appears to be too dark, but that is on purpose, when superman is hiding himself, and not helping people, but instead focusing on hiding his secret, but when he is helping people, when he basks in the sun, and becomes that symbol of hope, the world will except him with open arms, its about superman's doubt in himself, that would ultimately be resolved at the end, by using himself to encourage the world to aspire for greatness
TheReddestHood - 12/13/2012, 3:42 AM
The movie is like if superman came to our world...if he wasn't already in comics.
Happy11 - 12/13/2012, 4:08 AM
I think this will be a great superman movie. I have been impressed with cavill so far especially the Tudors. Also love synders work I think it will be a bit like Batman begins as in the way the story is set out ie flashback scenes of younger self while figuring out who he is but I don't think it's a bad thing that it'll follow BB template what lets wait til its released before condemning it. Be optimistic then you find yourself not disappointed. At the end of the day it is only a movie something that you should sit for 2 hours and enjoy, not whether it will save our souls or raise important questions of todays society.
jjk2814 - 12/13/2012, 8:45 AM
@MrEko
Thanks for the thoughtful response. I've been trying to digest this trailer and everything everybody has said about it, and I've realized a couple things...

First off; I'm not looking for anything life-changing or religious, no no no, but...
I want it to be GOOD! I mean REALLY, REALLY GOOD. I want everybody to want to go see this movie. I want it to be a cultural experience, not a religious or spiritual one.

All the talk of god and man, was simply to further illustrate the idea that you can't separate the Super and the Man, when they have in the past its been a failure. It's a delicate balance.

But, my biggest problem is that I just really don't want them to turn him into Peter Parker with the ability to fly. I don't want him to feel like a damned tortured, overly-emotional teenager. Thats my biggest fear.

@Happy11, Few good points there but I would say that any movie should utilize the potential to "raise important questions of today's society"

Also, for me, being optimistic only makes the disappointment that much more bitter. But thanks for the response.
jjk2814 - 12/13/2012, 12:02 PM
^^^HAHAHA! I'm glad to find someone who agrees with me on Arrow! But...to do more of a review I'd have to actually watch it again...and that I do not think I can do. But maybe...some day.
jjk2814 - 12/13/2012, 10:46 PM
I can handle Huntress and Deadshot...but Canary...as I said before they destroyed her more than they destroyed Ollie by making him a Bruce Wayne clone. They totally...oh god, bad pun to follow...clipped her wings...
CPBuff22 - 12/13/2012, 11:04 PM
You can't treat Superman like his is Batman or Spider-man. He isn't a masked vigilante who hides in the shadows and no one sees the good he does. This is a guy who catches crashing airliners and saves children from run away school buses. Superman need the world to love him. And with the current super hero movie climate where the Avenges hold all the box office records with their witty uplifting movie, you can't take Superman dark. He is the one DC Character who should be positive and popular.

As far as the current climate of super hero movies lets also not forget they want to follow this up with a Justice League movie. Superman has always been the public face of the Justice League. The reason people accepted Batman and Green Arrow as part of the team is because Superman vouched for them. So if you build Superman up as disliked or not trusted by the public then how would you ever expect them to accept Batman or Green Arrow.

Lets add to that with the question, wouldn't people have the same reaction to say Green Lantern as they do to Superman? That would make the Justice League much more like the Watchmen or a lesser known comic Irredeemable from Boom! The Justice League isn't feared to that extreme. Even when people are nervous about it Superman is the constant that lets people accept the team. You can't have that if the general population of the world hates and/or fears Superman.
jjk2814 - 12/14/2012, 9:55 AM
Very well said, CPBuff22!

That actually occurred to me last night; Beyond Man of Steel, IF the grittier, more grounded approach does manage to work...do we really want that same tone in Justice League. I'm sorry but at that point when we have a Justice League movie primarily for teens-twenty somethings and beyond, and not for the younger kids, then thats just an epic fail.
jjk2814 - 12/14/2012, 2:53 PM
Now I know why I want a Superman movie for kids...

They may need him as the symbol of hope and inspiration more than anyone.
jjk2814 - 12/14/2012, 4:24 PM
Umm...what happened to BattlinMurdock's editorial???????!!
jjk2814 - 12/15/2012, 7:32 PM
Well now I'm almost afraid to make a big deal about it, but he posted a really touching and relevant editorial in response to yesterday's tragedy. Citing how we all banded together after the Aurora shooting, and ultimately it seemed like a lot of people appreciate it, but then it disappeared.

For the future, I'd just like to know if its been decided by the powers-at-be that we are not to try to speak openly and honestly about the real world and stick to bitching at eachother about whether or not Superman is this or that.

I mean no disrespect, but it kinda irked me.

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