Posted by austinburns on July 17, 2006
What can I say about this movie? If I had to sum it up in two words, it would be “perfectly mediocre.” Everything about this movie was plain. Let’s start with the acting.
- Brandon Routh as Clark Kent/Superman, thumbs up. I thought he was very believable as Superman. He barely was in there as Clark, but he did good in that role as well.
- Kate Bosworth as Lois Lane, thumbs up. Ashley didn’t like her, but I thought she was fine.
- Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor, thumbs down. I didn’t care to much for him. He swayed between hamming it up and understating the performance. He really needed to either rein it in or overplay the whole thing. Uniformity would have been nice.
- James Marsden as Richard White, thumbs up. He had a shitty role, but he did well with it. He plays editor Perry White’s nephew and Lois Lane’s 5 year romance and father of her 5 year old kid. Or is he? I really liked the Superman love triangle when it was between Supe, Lois, and Clark. It was intriguing to have a love triangle with only two people. To add a third person means that there’s not much else for Clark to do. That being said, the Richard character was all to predictable, but Marsden brought some empathy to the role, which is all he really could do. At least it wasn’t a cliched love triangle where one guy is a total douche, but the girl doesn’t realize it. Richard is truly a good guy, believes his son is his son, but how can he compete with Superman?
- Some supporting characters: Parker Posey as Kittie Kowalski, thumbs up. Ashley seems to think that she and Lex were romantically involved, I’m under the impression that Lex likes the man-meat (prison will do that to you). If she and Lex weren’t an item, then her role in the movie is a little less clear. Basically, she’s a henchman (henchwoman? henchperson?), but she’s funny when she needs to be. Sam Huntington as Jimmy Olsen, thumbs up. It’s really hard to screw up Jimmy Olsen. Kal Penn as Stanford, thumbs up. Stanford is Lex’s main techie henchman, and the only one who is not an idiot. Kal did a great job with a role with no speaking parts. His role in the movie has a pretty shitty farewell, however.
- Lastly, Frank Langella as Perry White and Eva Marie Saint as Martha Kent, thumbs up. Langella was a prefect Perry, even uttering the classic, “Great Caeser’s ghost!” at one point in the movie. A very different contrast to J. K. Simmons and his portrayal of J. Jonah Jameson from Spider-Man. And Eva Marie Saint was perfectly cast as Martha Kent. Hardly in the movie, but played a worried/grieving mother perfectly.
The story was also pretty ludicrous. Superman has been gone for five years. No one knows where he went. One day, he just left. Turns out he went looking for Krypton. Lois is super pissed at him for not saying goodbye. Superman saves a bunch of people, including Lois. Lex’s plan involves the crystals from Supe’s fortress of solitude to build a new continent off the coast of
New York City Metropolis. Wanna guess how it ends? After Singer turned the X-Men story into a thoughtful allegory of homosexual acceptance, I had high hopes that he would do something similar with the Superman story. There was only one mention of something more. Lois writes a piece titled, “Why the World Doesn’t Need Superman” while Supe was gone. When Superman asks Lois about it, she replies that the world doesn’t need a savior. It’s easy enough to draw a line between Superman and Jesus, and Singer could have used that a little better. He could have articulated the difference between the need of a savior and the want of a savior. Instead, there’s one line, a bunch of shots of Superman ascending into the clouds, and a shot of a fatigued Superman falling to earth with his arms outstretched in a cross-like fashion. Singer dropped the ball.
With the average acting, the directing needing work, and the story needing help, I give it a generous