I appreciate that the guy has put together a very well thought out and cohesive arguement... but I feel like he glosses over the most jarring of complaints and focuses mostly on the one's he can counter with an arguement.
1. He argues that those who complain about Richard are wrong because Richard is a good character.
But that's EXACTLY the problem.
We see Superman hitting on and nearly kissing a woman who is engaged to another man. And this man isn't some jerk that makes us go 'screw it, she'd be happier with Superman' so we're kind of egging them on. He's actually a really decent guy, who doesn't deserve to be treated in that way.
I watch that movie, and I think that Richard wouldn't have done that to Superman if the tables were turned... what does that say about our hero?
2. He says that the kid being included is great because it's all about the theme of the movie.
Well half of my problem with the movie is it's theme... which seems to be all it's about, and which seems to be repeatedly shoved in our face in a way that doesn't resonate with many people... because the repeated line kind of doesn't make sense... it has never made sense to me... saying over and over again in Marlon Brandos voice doesn't help!
The son becomes the father... (okay, Superman has become a dad, I get that), the father becomes the son... (huh? Jor-el has become Superman? or Superman has become Jason? what the heck does that mean?)
3. He address the film being boring, by saying there are plenty of action scenes. Here he is glossing over one of the most popular complaints - lack of fight scene.
Not action scenes.
No one is saying that there was no action in this film. Just that a superhero like Superman would have been a really exciting opportunity to see some spectacular fight scenes.
4. His arguement about Superman Returns being it's own movie and therefore having it's own Superman, meaning you can't complain it's unsupermanly... is just nuts.
OF COURSE you can complain when an interpretation of the character steers so far away from the original that you start to feel he is no longer an interpretation of the character, but an OOC version.
Flying off for 5 years into space would perhaps not be unsupermanly if it had an ounce of logic behind it... like any kind of proof that anyone was out there. It might not be so unsupermanly if he'd held a press conference, told everyone and apologised. If he'd considered for a second the implications his being gone might have on things like Lex's court case.
The whole thing just made him look incredibly impulsive, selfish and stupid.
5. It's the same with Luthor's plot for me...
It's not that it's similar to the old films that bothers me. I get it, it's a homage.
It's that it makes NO sense. Even LESS sense than the first films land plot.
In the first film, he'd bought and secured the land that would be left. He would then OWN the coast. You can at least see where he would be making money here.
But in this film, Lex actual believes two INSANE things: 1. People will want to buy some land on his big green rock... 2. The government will allow him to keep it.
What rights does he have to that land? What ownership does he have? And beyond that, what in the world in stopped the army from just flying in and killing him.
He has no defensive strategy, he has no where to hide, and he just SITS THERE playing poker, waiting... waiting for what? Someone to come over on a boat and say 'Hey, that's some cool land you got there, can I have some?'
AHHHHHHHHHH! It's just soooooo stupid!
What's so bad about Superman Returns?
1. 3 significant plot points make NO SENSE WHATSOEVER! - Superman flying off to Krypton for 5 years without telling the world
- Lex's land plot
- Jason's conception (which is never explained, but we have to assume it comes after the events of Superman II... which Lois doesn't rememeber... and yet she does in this film... and yet, if she remembers them sleeping together, why doesnt she remember that he's Clark?!)
2. It came at a time when Superhero films were moving into the modern era... and it planted itself firmly in the past like someone who refuses to buy CD's and will only listen to things that come out on vinyl.
3. While utilising great effects in some scenes, it completely missed the opportunity, with as huge a budget as it had, for some SPECTACULAR visuals. Physical fight scenes between super powered beings for instance (thank god for MOS
4. It made Superman unlikeable. He was depressed, lonely and kind of sulking for half the movie. He had no natural warmth... he came across very ALIEN in every sense of the word... and yet there was no effort to show his human side (other than the one drink he had with Jimmy, which is probably my favourite scene)... to show him eating his mom's home cooked food, to show him in his apartment doing normal things, sleeping, getting ready for work, laughing at a tv show he hasn't seen in 5 years... any of those things, just to ground him as the main character.
The problem was that Singer, and to a lesser extent Donner, is that they could only see Superman... they couldn't see Clark. He saw this lonely alien being, stranger from another world, and seemed to just leave out all the rest. All the aspects that make a character tangible as a protagonist.
But at least with Donner's, he had a Superman who WAS naturally warm. Who was likeable and happy and enjoyed helping people... not taking Lois up into the air and telling her everyone was crying out for a saviour, as though proving her wrong in this arrogant and resentful way...
Maybe I should write a blog about how much I hate Superman Returns...