a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Why Superman Didn't Fly For Me

This is a tough post for me to write, because I really wanted to like SUPERMAN RETURNS. I like the character, I like the visual element of it, and on that level, the movie delivers -- it cost a ton, and it's on the screen.

And for those of you who dug it, all power to you.

But too much of the movie really didn't work for me. I'm a guy who needs his plot to make a certain amount of sense; I can forgive some things, and even enjoyed MI3 and X-MEN 3 despite some real story flaws.

But there was just too much in SUPERMAN RETURNS that was underwhelming to me. Opportunities missed, inherent problems not overcome, story fixes that were just lame.

So now I'm going to tear it apart. Because it deserves it.


THE SET-UP IS FLAT. Talk about a vague, draggy first 30 minutes. It's unclear why it takes Superman five years to go looking for his planet, while we don't get the answer to the question of why the kryptonite on his planet wouldn't hurt him (I'm sure there's a mythos, but it wasn't acknowledged here, which I'll get back to in the Kryptonite musings later). I guess he flies there in some sort of crystal ship, which crashlands on Earth later, though why it crashlands (and so accurately, exactly where he crashlanded as a baby) is unclear, or why he couldn't have bailed out on the way down, and simply placed the ship in the field.

SUPERMAN IS FLAT. There really isn't any edge or ambiguity to this character at all -- he doesn't have a dark side, like Batman, he isn't figuring out how to make the most of his powers, like Spiderman. Superman just does good stuff, and does it well, which makes the whole idea of Lois' editorial "Why the World is Better Without Superman" inane -- all he does is go around saving people, without any negative connotations. There's no downside to Superman, no sense that you wouldn't want him around, and indeed, all we see him do throughout is selfless, heroic things.

In Peter Travers' positive review of the movie in Rolling Stone, he says "Bryan Singer tarnishes his hero's halo with enough sexual longing and self-doubt to make him rivetting and relatable". But the sexual longing stuff here all felt generic and familiar, while I don't think the self-doubt thing comes across at all.

Plus Brandon Routh just isn't a very charismatic actor; he seemed like he was trying to do Christopher Reeve, but was missing the twinkle that Reeve brought to the role.

SUPERMAN ISN'T HONESTLY CHALLENGED. The problem with Superman is that he really is extremely powerful, and fast, and almost psychic in his ability to save people in the nick of time. But we never get the sense that he's struggling to do it. Even the sequence where he saves the shuttle and the plane, though visually impressive, lacks suspense, because there's no doubt that Superman will catch the plane and stop it before it hits the ground. As indeed happens.

Compare this to SPIDERMAN 2, with the great sequence in which Spiderman has to stop the runaway subway train. There's the real sense throughout the scene that Spiderman is trying to figure out simply how to do it, while he realistically struggles so much doing so (and brings himself physical pain doing so) that we are with him every step of the way. It's dramatic, and it shows someone stretching their powers, going beyond what they usually do to accomplish something.

I never once got that sense during Superman Returns. There's never a moment when I thought "How's Superman going to get out of this one?", or in which Superman has to make a real choice in saving some people at the expense of others. He's just Superman, which I guess is fine for people on a certain level, but which really doesn't push the character in nearly enough interesting directions.

LEX LUTHER IS FUN, BUT TOOTHLESS, AND HIS EVIL PLOT IS STUPID. Let's get this straight. He's going to make this new land mass out of crystal, and kill a billion people, because then he thinks people are going to pay him for the new land. Ummm.... What?

Plus the new land mass is desolate, and ugly (aside from the waterfalls, which won't last long anyway, because there's no actual river/melting snow feeding the water flow). There are plenty of desolate, ugly places in North America already that no one wants to buy or live on, that don't even come with the baggage of having been created by a mass-murdering psychopath.

I know, I know, he's crazy. Not good enough.

Kevin Spacey adds some humor, but this character worked best in Superman 2, when he actually had people on his side who were a match for Superman, who gave Superman a challenge. Here, he's just a crazy villain, and not even a particularly smart one; he's too dumb even to have anyone guarding his boat, while he leaves Lois Lane with a working fax machine and the heavy-handed mention of exactly where they are located (don't get me started).

How weak is the villain? He's so weak, that the movie can't even have a climactic showdown between him and Superman.

THE WHOLE KRYPTONITE THING. The only thing Lex Luther has going for him is Kryponite, but again the whole Kryptonite thing is vague and largely illogical.

The idea is that Lex Luther has created this new land partially out of Kryptonite, so that as soon as Superman lands on it, it saps his strength, and the bad guys can kick his ass (in a painfully unimaginative sequence). To cap it off, Lex Luther then stabs him with the Kryptonite blade.

That's all fine, and it's the closest that this movie comes to a "Wow, how is Superman going to get out of this?" moment.

But then the movie cheats. Superman gets saved, in a frankly very unconvincing sequence (involving a seaplane and Lois Lane swimming down what should have been a large distance to pull him to safety, despite the fact that she was just unconscious and thus should be more than a little shaky). Lois pulls the Kryptonite out, enabling Superman to recover. Okay. Maybe.

But how is Superman able to lift this whole Kryptonite-based land mass -- this huge, Kryptonite-crystals-really-close-to-his-face landmass -- without getting as weak as he got when he was standing on it? Especially since, as we learn later, he STILL HAS A CHUNK OF KRYPTONITE IN HIS BACK?

If you are going to have Kryptonite -- and even proximity to Kryptonite -- be this dangerous to Superman, then you need to get out of it honestly. There needs to be the real sense that Superman needs to do something credible to get out of the situation. Here, it felt like they were just sort of winging it, and not well.

CONTRIVANCE. There are some incredibly contrived bits here, story problems that beg for better fixes than they get here.

I can imagine the story conference. "We need to have Lois Lane go to Lex Luther's hangout". "Okay, let's have her make some calls, and find out where the power went out first?"

It seems incredibly unlikely that this info (power outage down to the second) would even be findable, or that a public utility dealing with all the problems from a blackout, would have someone able to actually determine this for her, when efficiency isn't their bailiwick, and hell, if they did care so much, why wouldn't they send their own people out, to see if it's a power problem that won't flare up again?

But that's the least of the contrivances.

"How do we get the kid with her?" 'Ummm... She picks him up? And then takes him with her? And then sneaks him aboard a ship (James Bond never found a villain's lair that was this easy to get into), even though she has no idea whose ship it is, and she's at the site of something that could be dangerous and almost brought down a plane she was on?" (though even the pulse happening when she was on the plane at the same time was extremely contrived too... and, umm, wouldn't there have been other planes in the sky as well?)

Because I guess something as simple as her driving the kid to the site, and Lex Luther seeing her and snatching her, would have been too easy.

Also, what happens to the big crystal thing he grows in the basement? There's not even the requisite sight of where the top of it even goes; it would have been easy enough to have Lois spot it and then get snatched.

And then there's the clunky mention of the location where they are, and Lois' faxing it to the news office (instead of just texting it on her phone to her boyfriend.... oh yeah, she's a reporter, sneaking onto a boat with a kid, but she LEAVES HER PHONE IN THE CAR. Ugh.) and her boyfriend having a seaplane that gets him to the site incredibly, unrealistically quickly.

These are bad fixes. Bad. Anything that makes your brain stop in the middle of a movie, and say "Wait a minute...", things that clearly only happen because they serve the needs of the story, need to be reworked and made much much more credible.

LOIS LANE'S KID. I liked this character, but wow do I wish they had done more with him. Instead, they have to play a dumb game, where it's clear that Lois is hiding the fact that it is Superman's, though no one here seems able to do the math (one wonders when her new boyfriend came into her life; you have to figure she would have waited for Superman for a little while).

Meanwhile, there's great potential with this kid, because he's obviously going to be a mix of Superman's strength and Lois' human frailties, and he has his heroic moment, when he saves his mother with the piano. And then they go in the room, and he doesn't even try to get them out. Instead, he says he's sorry, which doesn't seem to pay off anything.

It begs the question over whether Lois has already told him not to use his powers, which would be interesting, but use it -- have her tell the kid that she knows she said that, but there are times when he needs to, and now try to get them out of the room. Maybe he can, and maybe he can't, but at least deal with it. Instead... nothing.

Maybe they are saving it for the next one. But they still could have done much more with the kid here.

THE ENDING DRAGS. Everything with the main plot has already been resolved, but the movie goes on for 10 more minutes, in which we get slow scene after slow scene in which pretty much everything happens that we expect, in underwhelming fashion.

GOOD/BAD. The bullet clunking off his eye was great, because not only is it visually interesting, but it perfectly answers the nagging question of why bad guys wouldn't stop bouncing bullets off his chest and shoot him in the head. Less great is the constant winking at the fact that no one notices that Clark and Superman are the same person, even though now, on top of everything else, they have both just returned after being mysteriously missing for at least five years. All the attempts to explain it away here by having Lois and her boyfriend musing about it just makes it seem even more inane -- as an elephant in the room, it works better if the characters aren't constantly saying "hey, is that a trunk?"

THE GOOD NEWS. Pirates of the Caribbean 2 opens on Friday. Early word is good.


At 12:26 PM, Anonymous Jamesface said...

I thought the reason the kids just says "sorry" in the galley could be down to one of two reasons- either the looming kryptonite island all around them weakening his powers, or that fact that inside his head, he's saying to himself "holy SHIT! I threw a PIANO across a ROOM!" and frankly, he's a little bit scared of what he's just discovered he can do. The writing and directing should definitely have emphasised that.

Totally agree on all your other points, but then aren't they always going to be inherent flaws in any Superman film? Lex is only ever going to be human; you'll never honestly believe Superman will fail to save Lois; Superman himself will never be proactive - essentially his whole purpose is to be a big dumb strong guy who stops the universe hurting us too often.

Still, all said and done, at least it didn't end up being based on the Kevin Smith fanwank script.

At 12:47 PM, Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

Scott there are a lot of great Superman stories out there that deal with the idea that he is all powerful. The thing is when you have someone who is that powerful - you don't hurt them, you hurt the ones they love. That's how you get them.

And would someone please write a law that says the main villain cannot have any comic relief henchmen?!!! NONE!

This was a movie that was trying to make the 1978 movie all over again.


At 1:53 PM, Blogger Chesher Cat said...

And what about the make-up? The first third of the movie I was trying to figure out if Superman/Clark was real or animated.

It really took me out of the "story."

At 3:05 PM, Blogger Andrew Oh-Willeke said...

I think you have the kid wrong. Dad is hurt by kryptonite. Kid is made stronger by it. Hence, when he is around it, he suddenly has a power he never had before and doesn't really realize it.

At 3:38 PM, Blogger Scott the Reader said...

Interesting theory, except that it doesn't really make any sense, since Kryptonite doesn't make anyone else stronger at any time. More likely, the kid has semi-strength and semi-Kryptonite vulnerability.

At 4:04 PM, Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

Scott - Andrew is taking the kryptonite theory from the Smallville tv series, which does enhance humans and debilitate Supes. Andrew - correct me if I'm assuming something.

Cheser - did you really need to follow the story since so many elements were robbed from the Donner movies?

At 5:52 PM, Blogger "it's always better on holiday..." said...

Here! Here! To all your points, though I liked Brandon and thought the issue with him had more to do with the script and directing. Singer may be a great "visonary", but he doesn't seem to have the ability to coach a great performance out of somebody who needs it (ie Berry).

P.S. - I'm surprised that you didn't bring up the hospital stay, cause I found that more unbelievable then Supes flying around the word to turn back time or making a woman lose her memory with a kiss ;p

At 6:19 PM, Blogger Konrad West said...

I wasn't expecting much, and I had fun, so I'm happy. I would like to have to seen a bit more depth in Superman/Clark, though.

As you mentioned, Spiderman battles with what to do with his powers, and Batman has a dark side, but Superman is an all-powerful boy scout.

It would have been great to see an exploration of what it is like to be all-powerful; like Superman facing criticism over who he chooses to save, etc. Having everyone love a character doesn't make for much depth.

Anyway, I can't wait for Pirates!

At 7:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Scott,
Nice analysis! I agree with ALL of your points, although I still enjoyed the film (particularly the "zooming above the city at night" scenes). Overall the film felt clunky, as if parts had been changed/hastily rewritten prior to shooting. As you say, the stupidity of the villain (and his absurd "evil plot") was a definite weakness in the story (along with all the others you bring up), but the one thing that always makes me laugh about Superman is how his costume is never damaged. I mean, sure, HE is impervious to bullets, bombs etc, but wouldn't his costume fall to bits after being hit with shrapnel etc? Go figure...

At 10:35 PM, Blogger Dave said...

Although I agree with all the points, I still enjoyed it.

Juan - Superman's outfit was originally made from his blanket, I believe. There is an explaination for it in the Superman mythos, although I'm not a super-freak over superman.

One of the things I dislike about him is that he is so unlike all the others. He is the most powerful being in the superhero universe.

There was recently an episode on Justice League where he got to fight Darkseid. He actually says something like, "I always have to hold back, never full strength with anything I do, but you can take it can't you?" and they beat the bejesus out of each other.

You talk of Spiderman's problems (dealing with his powers, etc.) but Superman's deal (which has never been explored in live action, but has in cartoon, is if you are as powerful as Superman, how do you determine what is right/wrong? You can say what is right/wrong and enforce it. He is unable to take a life because of his invincibility. His is a moral dilemma.

All that said, he is truly annoying in his boy scoutedness.

While I agree about Lex's weak evil plan, the only villains that pose any challenge to Superman are Darkseid, Doomsday and possibly Galactus... although none of these are too familiar to the general populous.

At 12:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dudes,

Dave - the Superman costume bit has never been covered in any of the films and (unlike Batman Begins & Spiderman - both far superior films) is never properly explained. It's another example of the films poor grounding of its "story universe".

I agree with your points about the Superman films and the villains. Jeez, enough of blasted Lex Luthor please - get someone fresh AND WITH superpowers to give SM a run for his money. What's also annoying about Superman Returns is that the Lex Luthor character survived...oh no that means...yep, more of the same!

Juan :)

At 4:06 AM, Anonymous pd boy said...

This film is supposed to be 5 years after Superman 2. In that film, Lois gets her memory erased by Supes and has no recall of the tryst she enjoyed at the Fortress of Solitude, which means...

... she should absolutely have no idea who the father is. She herself can't know that her son possesses any great strength until the piano scene. I supposed it's some kind of Virgin birth metaphor which I would have liked to see more of.

I mean Lois should and must be mighty confused. It's her big secret.

At 6:00 AM, Blogger Dante Kleinberg said...

Ugh! I agree completely

And everything was so overdone as to almost be insulting to our intelligence... Like the constant quick shots to Kitty looking upset about Lex's plan -- gee, I wonder if she'll betray him? And what a terrible betrayal! If Superman hadn't thrown the whole stupid island into space, the crystals would've ended up in the ocean and destroyed the planet...

There was nothing they wanted to say in this movie that they didn't say twice. Another example: Jimmy telling Clark that Lois never got over "you-know-who" AND Richard White asking Lois if she still loves him... and if the kid being Superman's son was supposed to be a surprise or twist, why did they have Lex speculate on it like five minutes earlier?

And don't get me started on the "SUPERMAN IS DEAD" newspaper fake-twist... ugh...

I can't believe this is the same guy who made Usual Suspects and the first two X-Men movies. I know he wanted to inspire a love of Superman in children, but children don't require all their entertainment be dumbed down. I just saw Finding Nemo for the first time a couple weeks ago and never once felt like I was being talked down to.

(sorry, ultra-long comment, but I had a lot to get off my chest and already decided on a spoiler-free review over on my own blog)

At 6:20 AM, Blogger Thomas Crymes said...

Boy, Scott. All of your points are exactly right, and yet so wrong.

I just loved this movie, and thought that Routh was a perfect fit. A lot of the problems you stated were also "problems" with the original. But the original, despite its flaws is one of my favorites. I'd have to say that the things that took you out of the movie, didn't even faze me. I suppose different people have different tolerances. Lois leaves her cell phone behind and I don't bat an eye, but Ann Darrow at the top of the Empire State Building in February in nothing but an evening gown has me crying foul.

And I think stories about Superman are about how other people are changed by him rather than how he grows.

I was looking for something that felt like the 78 version and I went into the theater with more than a little trepedation, because I didn't think it could live up to the earlier movie, but it really felt like an extension of it, and I really liked that.

And about the end, you are again totally right about the story winding down slowly. But I think all the people crowding the streets around the hospital was a scene that will stick with me for a long time. I loved it. I ate up the ending and wished I could see just a little more.

Sometimes you have to let a story linger. Actually I consider what SMR does more of an epilogue than an ending.

You did hit on one of the inherent flaws of a Superman movie where he battles Lex Luthor. Unless you can produce a being as strong as Superman, there can be no final battle. Superman has only to defeat Lex's plan, and then go and pick him up. That's why the original has an anticlimactic feel to it.

And if you want an answer as to why the world doesn't need Superman, it could be that with a super being solving all of our problems, what happens to us? Do we not erode? Do we not become dependent? Weak?

Of course the movie doesn't delve into this. I'm sure art house Superman would concentrate on Superman's deep inner journey and transformation, and it would be the first Superman movie that takes place entirely in a coffee shop.

In the end, it either works for you or it doesn't.

At 6:33 AM, Blogger Thomas Crymes said...

I could say that Superman wasn't immediately affected by the Kryptonite because he tunnelled down far enough to be insulated from it, and it wasn't until the rocks fell away exposing him to the Kryptonite that he became weak and fell to Earth.

But one can rationalize anything they want. Even about Lois' husaband's piloting skills. His ability to pilot was set up so that he could fly out there to save Superman. The question is whether or not that ticks you off. They did go through great pains to set it up. That was good enough for my enjoyment, and for others it felt too forced.

But it goes back to something I firmly believe. There is no perfect movie. If a movie engages you, you will gloss over flaws. If it never pulls you in, then you can just sit back and pick out flaw after flaw.

At 7:42 AM, Blogger Joshua James said...

My understanding is that Krypton itself wouldn't harm Supe because under a red sun, it's harmless to him (and why everyone from his planet was cool and okay) - it's our yellow sun that gives Supe his powers and turns Kryptonite into a deadly piece of rock.

That's what it was back in the day. However, then one must ask, how was Supe able to travel to his solar system if, when he hit a red sun, he lost his powers?

Questions, questions - oh, if I recall, they added the eyeball thing much later - it was a reshoot in order to spice up the beginning.

At 8:42 AM, Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

That's why we had the 2nd spaceship crash at the beginning of the film - he travelled to Krypton in a ship.

This is just a bad film...not just a bad Superman film.

At 10:37 AM, Blogger MaryAn Batchellor said...

I don't ride a roller coaster to compare it to the other rides at the park or coasters it was modeled after, evaluate the curves, study the pins or measure the inconsistent velocity along the way -- I just go to have a great ride. The hypocricy here is that if the ride crashes, stalls, or throws my kid off, I'll do every one of those things.

Superman was a great ride for me. But then, I wasn't expecting much since I was only killing time until I could ride Pirates of the Caribbean.

At 10:42 AM, Blogger Scott the Reader said...

Yeah the whole kid thing is very vague. I haven't seen Superman 2 in a while, though I always thought the whole spin on the forgetting thing was making her forget he was Clark Kent.

But even if she forgot the sex thing (and, you know, having unprotected sex with someone and then making them forget about it is kind of creepy), it strains credulity that she wouldn't realize it happened, because she just had sex with Superman (hello, bruising? Aftershocks?) and because she'd soon realize she was pregnant.

So either she had no memory, and would have been extremely freaked out (which there is no sign of in the movie), or she remembers the sex and just isn't telling Superman that he has a kid (which could be interesting, but they absolutely don't deal with it).

Given that Lois had a thing for Superman, and that she was upset when he left, I don't think she credibly would have slept with Richard fast enough to make her (or Richard) think Richard is the father.

Meanwhile, the fact that it doesn't occur to Superman that he had unprotected sex with this woman, left, comes back, and she has a 4-year-old child that obviously his, just means that he is a dumbass. AND, if he did make her forget the sex, it should be topic 1 at their first meeting -- Superman should be stepping up to the plate and doing the child-support thing.

Ultimately, it just feels more messy to coyly ignore the whole thing, than it would have been to actually address it, though obviously they figured it wasn't proper discussion for a movie that they hope lots of kids will see.

So it all gets dumbed-down, superficial handling.

At 11:43 AM, Blogger Fun Joel said...

Thanks for this!

At 12:33 PM, Blogger Kid Sis said...

Scott, no bruising because she didn't have sex with Superman. She had sex with Clark after his powers had been taken away by Supermommy. The impression from that film, and the infamous woman of Kleenex essay: that Superman's choice is be eunuch Superman, or be powerless Clark getting laid. Thus Supes' "relationship" with Wonder Woman.

Also, she DEFINITELY doesn't know she slept with Superman in the movie canon (see Superman 3 and 4).

At 6:58 PM, Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

And Chris was saying this wasn't a sequel - oy!

Kid Jason = can of worms they should have never opened up.

If you have to know all these facts from the previous 4 movies to enjoy this one (or understand it even)= BAD MOVIE.

At 8:23 PM, Blogger Dave said...

Juan: You are correct, the suit issue has never been dealt with on film, but I believe it may have been in the comics.

I believe the two most popular answers are the suit is made from his blanket (which was indestructible) or that he projects a thin forcefield that protects the suit.

Although I love all the new "comic" movies, if you're not an avid fan of the comics, you're only getting part of the story. They all have so much history. They are "superheroes" after all, so you can't go looking for everything to make sense :)

At 9:58 PM, Blogger wcmartell said...

Agree with all of the points - dragged for me, too. Also - just not very exciting.

I think the weird part about the end - it goes on *forever* after the battle is won - points out my theory that this isn't a superhero movie at all... it's a love story. A love story where they don't hook up.

And why Lex again? Is there any other superhero franchise that has the same damned villain in every movie?

- Bill

At 10:14 PM, Blogger wcmartell said...

PS: Why does Superman go on his search for life on Krypton in a space ship, yet he can fly through space just using his cape?

At 11:48 PM, Blogger Patrick J. Rodio said...

Did they drag Richard Pryor out for this one? If so, I am so there.

At 1:19 AM, Anonymous Chris Soth said...

Mainly I'm with you, and SO damn long. Plus, all the flying got me thinking, in 1978, w/sfx where it was, "You will believe a man can fly" got asses in seats...w/fx where they are today, it's really just how this guy gets from place to'd be like showing another character walking for 3 minutes (A LOT of screen time) before he gets to another scene.

PS. I first heard "gormless" in a online review of my movie: "Howie Long's gormless acting"...I posted a comment "You're right, I told them on the set, the guy's just got no gorm." Also, let me know when you'd like a scrabble match

At 6:52 AM, Blogger Lucy said...

"(and, you know, having unprotected sex with someone and then making them forget about it is kind of creepy)"

Superman doing this even without rohypnol is not just creepy, but rape, surely???

I haven't seen this movie yet and wasn't planning to... I'm not big on superheroes, but always had a soft spot for Batman 'cos as far as I know (could be wrong) he's the only one NOT supernatural or genetically modified and has a dodgy past AND a rubber suit. Wow.

Despite this however AND the fact Batman Begins starred the lush Christian Bale, I was disappointed by the movie.


Sorry...But I just think that, when you love a character when ur a kid and you then see a re-make of that character as an adult, you're destined for disappointment. Or maybe it's just me.

At 6:53 AM, Blogger Lucy said...

PS - Patrick, isn't Richard Pryor dead??

At 8:05 AM, Blogger Bill Cunningham said...

"PS: Why does Superman go on his search for life on Krypton in a space ship, yet he can fly through space just using his cape?"

He can only hold his breath for so long, he can't fly indefinitely into space. He gets his powers from our yellow sun.

(we are definitely having a geek moment here aren't we?)

At 1:35 PM, Blogger joenyc said...


Jason, Lois' son, was underdeveloped. He walked around like a wide-eyed vegetable. I'm waiting and waiting for him to come alive, which he finally does after an hour and a half with a cool sequence on the yacht, where he flings a piano at a thug who's about to off his mother and kills him..

But later, he along with his mom and dad are trapped in a room and are about to drown, but he's not able to find the strength to help.

Just earlier he found the strength to save his mom, and now that he, his mom and dad are about to die, he can't conjure up the strength to open a lock door?

Maybe he choked under pressure. Maybe the earlier save of his mother was a one-time kind of fluke. Or, maybe it was a plot convenience so Superman could to save the day.

Either the kid has super strength or he doesn't. Don't play fast and loose with logic because of plot conveniences.

Melding the kryptonite with the crystal that's gonna produce Lex's continent is clever, but again the payoff is done in a way that's not logical.

Superman appears on the kryptonite-laced rock-like mass and approaches Lex. As they talk, Lex spots sweat dripping down Superman's head. This tips off Lex that the kryptonite is doing its magic, taking away Superman's powers.

Lex proceeds to shove him several feet away. As Superman crawls along the ground, he's so weak his body's quivering. His hands are bleeding from touching the kryptonite.

Lex finishes him off by stabbing him with a kryptonite dagger. Superman falls off the cliff to the water below.

Lois saves him and pulls out the kryptonite dagger. Being away from the kryptonite he leaves the plane and rises toward the Sun to rejuvenate and power up.

Once he has his full power back, he heads for Lex's rock-like mass, dives underneath and lifts it up toward space.

Yes, at first he's insinuated by the Earth's crust, but eventually because of gravity the kryptonite drops through the Earth's crust.

There's kryptonite all around him and even a shot of a small piece of the kryptonite dagger still left in him, but he's able to journey toward space, when just earlier the kryptonite knocked him out within a minute.

I don't get the filmmaker's logic here. Does Singer wants us to believe that after charging up at the Sun it gave him enough power to overcome the kryptonite's effect long enough until he reaches space?

After witnessing the kryptonite's effect on Superman when he first landed on Lex's rock, where within a minute he couldn't lift a finger to defend himself against average humans, I just can't believe he's able to lift a rock mass to space?

No matter if he charged up from the Sun, or had one of those heroic adrenalin moments where a person pushes on past limits.

Previously, every time he came into contact with kryptonite he collapses.

My full analysis of "Superman Returns" is here:

At 8:49 PM, Blogger Patrick J. Rodio said...

Lucy, I believe so, that's why I said "drag." Maybe I should have said "dig up?"

At 9:36 AM, Blogger Lucy said...

Maybe! But then that's probably against Health and Safety At Work regulations ; )

At 5:02 PM, Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

movie sucked out loud. but i left with a worse case of parker posey madness. . .i loves me some of that...

At 9:23 PM, Blogger Johnny said...

Great comments! here are my 2 cents:


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