Re: Gene Hackman or Kevin Spacey?
Neither were good Luthors, but Hackman had a charm and wit. Spacey's "Lex" had nothing. At least it felt like Hackman was trying. Donner wanted a lighter Lex and he got it. Whether it is a good portrayal of Lex or debatable, but it was a good performance.
Spacey's Lex was just bad. He is a fine actor but his performace in SR had nothing. It felt like he was reading cue-cards and didn't want to be there. I know he had those personal problems in London around that time so maybe that explains it.