Man of Steel - First reviews mostly praise Zack Snyder's Superman reboot
Story by Jack Foley
THE first reviews of Man of Steel are in… and critics seem largely impressed.
Directed by Zack Snyder, of Watchmen and Sucker Punch fame, produced by Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight trilogy) and featuring script work by David S Goyer, the film is being viewed as an appropriate reboot of the Superman story for this current generation.
Many critics have likened it to Nolan’s own Dark Knight franchise, and in particular Batman Begins, while some have praised its no-nonsense, go-for-broke approach that comes at the expense of some more intimate moments.
Leading the fanfare, Empire states: “It aches for more depth and warmth and humour, but this is spectacular sci-fi — huge, operatic, melodramatic, impressive. It feels the right Superman origin story for our era, and teases what would be a welcome new superfranchise.”
While The Hollywood Reporter wrote: “Zack Snyder’s huge, backstory-heavy extravaganza is a rehab job that perhaps didn’t cry out to be done but proves so overwhelmingly insistent in its size and strength that it’s hard not to give in.”
Total Film, while noting that the S in Superman would appear to stand for ‘serious’, concluded: “A bracing attempt to bring the legend back into contention that successfully separates itself from other Super-movies but misses some of their warmth and charm. But given the craft and class, this could be the start of something special.”
And Digital Spy hailed it to be “the most exhilarating and arresting interpretation of Superman yet”.
We Got This Covered, meanwhile, opined: “At once vaster in scope than any superhero movie yet produced, and as intimately, crushingly emotional as any other entry in the genre, Man of Steel lands with the precise, explosive weight of a true historical milestone.”
There were some negatives in amongst the positive reviews. Variety placed itself firmly in the negative camp, writing: “Clearly designed to do for DC Comics’ other most venerable property what Nolan and Goyer’s Batman Begins did for the Caped Crusader, this heavily hyped, brilliantly marketed tentpole attraction seems destined to soar with worldwide audiences this summer, even if the humorless tone and relentlessly noisy (visually and sonically) aesthetics leave much to be desired — chiefly, a “Steel” sequel directed with less of an iron fist.”
And Screen International wrote: “The film doesn’t lack for spectacle, but after a while its emphasis on grand gestures and unwavering gravitas stops feeling heroic and begins to seem like overkill.”
But in the main, the early word is positive and Snyder appears to have laid solid foundations for a new superhero franchise and, quite possibly, a Justice League movie too.