Sunday, June 16, 2013

Super Bomb: Man of Steel is awful

Betty deconstructs the summer madness that is Man of Steel.

Super Bomb: Man of Steel is awful

I think I'd already noted awhile back about the movies my kids had carved out as movies that we will see together.

Last night one of the summer films on our list -- our list as a four-some -- came out.  And we invited Ty and his boyfriend and Dona and Jim.  (Jess is in DC at C.I.'s house.  He's on vacation and they're staying in DC so everyone's not flying all over. He's in DC to be with Ava and their daughter.)

So the movie's Superman and how can you go wrong with Superman, right?

Man of Steel finds the way.

Let me be clear that I love the Superman character.  As a little girl, I watched the fifties show (in reruns! I'm not that old!) and really just watched it for the moment when Clark would become Superman.  (Which, in retrospect was never as great as when Lynda Carter would spin around and switch from Diana Prince to Wonder Woman.)  When Lois and Clark came on, I fell in love with Dean Cain.  We are talking a huge obsession.  Even now, I still have a little crush on Dean Cain.

Dean was the perfect Superman for me.  And I wanted to be Teri Hatcher's Lois!

I like Christopher Reeves in the films but felt that, after Superman II, the series lost its way.

I actually enjoyed Superman Returns.  I felt Brandon Routh did a great job and the only real problem was James Marsden.  Marsden's a good actor and I'm not saying he did a bad job and tanked the film. I'm saying he's amazing to look at and we really didn't need that competing with Brandon's Clark for Lois' attention.  The fact that the two really aren't connected, I feel, did more to hurt the film than anything else.  If you don't have Lois and Clark as a couple (as opposed to an ex-couple and, oops, Superman's a daddy!), you've kind of trashed the basic points.

But Brandon Routh was so good in his role and Parker Posey so funny as Kevin Spacey's moll, that I still loved the movie.  My kids loved it more.  That is the Superman film they watched over and over.

So we were all excited about Man of Steel.

And then we saw it.

First off, Henry Cavill and his crotch mound look ridiculous.

Everyone thinks it, no one wants to say it.

I will.

It was a huge mistake to alter the costume. (They've removed the red briefs.)  Having done so, they now have Cavill in a packed crotch cup under his Superman suit.

It did not look sexy.

And I had to wonder what freak thought it would?

I wouldn't have gone with my kids to see it if they'd done it sexy (and I knew ahead of time).  But sexy is not a baseball.  Had I seen the outline of a penis, for example, that might have been sexy.  But what looks like a round grapefruit shoved in his pants is not sexy.

It did not imply, to me, "Big cock!"  It implied to me, "Stuffed crotch."

Let me digress.  I have a very good friend who I will not name here.  He has a younger brother who gets all the attention in the family.  He (my friend) finds out his brother is getting married.  How?  After everyone else has been told.

Why is that an issue?

YB does not have a job.  YB does not have any money.  My friend is already paying for YB to go to college.  YB tells him, after telling everyone else, that he's getting married.  And of course YB means, "You're paying for it."  Because only an idiot of 21 would decide to get married when he has no job and he's sponging off his older brother.

(What about her parents?  Her parents had passed away.  What about the brothers' parents?  No money for a wedding.  No money at all which is why my friend was paying his Younger Brother's college.)

And, since there's no job and no job hunting going to take place, this means YB's moving new wife into my friend's apartment.

It gets worse.

YB does not pick his brother as his best man.

He picks a cousin.  Now I'm sorry but that's hurtful.  You're supposed to go with your brother.  And I would say you're supposed to do that especially if your brother is paying for your damn wedding.

Not only that, YB has a bachelor party and doesn't invite his brother.  My friend can pay for the wedding but can't go to the bachelor party.

Let me be really blunt and explain that my friend has put his life on hold for YB.  YB was in trouble at school was going to be expelled and my friend stepped in, took YB into his apartment, basically became the Dad (including being the first one to set boundaries).

But YB doesn't even make him a groom's man.

My friend was so hurt.

I knew when the wedding was and made a point to get as dazzling as I can.  (I'm not beautiful.  I can pass for pretty on a good day.  But I got a sexy dress -- and good genes gave my a good body -- and went and had my hair and make up done -- a three hour process -- to look the best I could.)  I showed up at the wedding to give moral support and also because I had an ugly fear about what might happen.

Which did.  The worthless parents of my friend showed up drunk and got drunker at the reception and at one point went on and on to him about how sad that he can't find anyone but his Younger Brother had.  At which point, I wrapped an arm around him, leaned in and kissed him and said, "Oh, ___ hasn't told you about us?"

There is no us.  We're just friends.  But I'd be damned if a stand-up guy was going to get treated like s**t by his own parents at a wedding he was paying for.

That shut them up.

But the point.

When I first saw him at the wedding.

He hurries over and says, "I can't believe it!" He was happy.  I told him I thought he might need a friend.  I then told him to unstuff his crotch by half.

I'm not joking.

He had stuffed his crotch.  And it looked like the Cavill outfit.  We laughed about it.  And we do silly things when we're insecure.

But had I been on the set of Man of Steel, I would have told Cavill and others, the crotch was ridiculous.

Amy Adams is Lois Lane and she's more ridiculous.  She's lousy in the part (acting wise) and she looks like Nicole Kidman opposite Zach Ephron in The Paperboy  --- but that pairing was supposed to be off balance.  That's the point of the relationship in that film.

Lois is not supposed to be Clark's Mrs. Robinson.

She may be only eight years older (the actress) but she looks 15 years older.

And I could forgive it if she was remotely believable as Lois.  She's not.  Margot Kidder remains the definitive Lois -- a real reporter, pursuing scoops so single-mindedly, she can never notice that Clark is Superman, so desperately in love with Superman that the idea he could exist in her own world never occurs to her.  Kidder remains the best Lois.

Man of Steel has promise.  It works very briefly when we're in Smallville.  Diane Lane and Kevin Costner play Martha and Jonathan Kent and you believe them in the roles and they're magical.  But too soon, they're gone.  And you're left with crap.

Laurence Fishburne tries real hard.  He's Perry White.  And he does make you sit up in your seat whenever he's on.  But he's not on that much and Perry has so little to do that you're left with snooze-fest of a film.

Who would have thought it was possible to make Superman boring.

And Cavill?

I'm sure his poster could be popular in many dorm rooms -- male and female.

But there's nothing there.

He's a pretty boy who never touches on the magic of Superman.

Christopher Reeve had the right sense of playful.  Dean Cain did as well.  I thought Tom Welling (in the TV show Smallville) achieved it and that was the only reason to watch most episodes of that show.

I couldn't figure out if Cavill was supposed to be playing Superman mopey or if model-boy was just trying to stick out the lips for a pouty look.

But he was dreadful.

Russell Crowe?  He's on my list of favorite actors and on my list of sexy actors.

He plays Jor-El (Superman's bio father) in this film.  Marlon Brando played it in the Christopher Reeves films.  It's a nothing role and, like Brando, Crowe manages not to embarrass himself.

But watching, I thought, "Why did they do this?"  Why would you cast Crowe in this role and not do something with it?

There's more than enough ways that Jor-El could have come down to earth for this storyline.  But no one wanted to think about a storyline.  He could have, for example, have used a time machine.  "Yes, I will die on Krypton but I used a time machine to come here and see you."

Then they could have just done a voice over and shown the rocket leaving Krypton to start the movie instead of all the blubber and waste that seemed to go on forever and seemed to indicate that the film's editor was either on strike or in a coma.

This isn't a film, it's a retread and it's too dark and it's too ugly.

Superman never takes off in Man of Steel.

I think Christopher Nolan (produced this, didn't direct) is vastly overpraised.  Tim Burton brought darkness and light to Batrman.  Nolan only brought darkness and I think the years will not be kind to Nolan's vision of Batman.  I also think he offers flat films -- in appearance and in mood.

He never should have been involved in this project.

And whomever had the stupid idea that Zach Snyder (director of the wretched Watchmen) was the right choice for Man of Steel should be strapped to a chair and forced to watch Man of Steel six times in a row (at which point the person will no doubt slit their own wrists).

The film is awful.  Do not waste your money.  Go see Now You See Me.  Or the film my oldest son and I saw Frances Ha.  We were in Oakland getting him some music equipment (thanks to C.I., my oldest is a gifted musician -- I've noted that before, she taught him bass, she got him a great guitar, she's taught him piano, he can play anything now -- he was finding his way with guitar on his own so I'm not including that) that I'd promised him forever and kept putting off.  So I did a half-day at work and we went to Oakland and while there we went to the Piedmont because we were both hot.  So we went there to sit in the a.c.  And we saw Frances Ha knowing nothing about it but it's a really great movie. It stars Greta Gerwig (who I'd never seen before) and she was amazing in the role.  Frances Ha had all the humanity that should have naturally been in Man of Steel.

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