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Superman: The Movie [VHS] [1978]

81 customer reviews

RRP: £12.99
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Product details

  • Actors: Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Gene Hackman, Marlon Brando, Ned Beatty
  • Directors: Richard Donner
  • Writers: David Newman, Jerry Siegel, Joe Shuster, Leslie Newman, Mario Puzo
  • Language: English
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Warner
  • VHS Release Date: 27 Sept. 2004
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005Q5MW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 340,539 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

A baby from the planet Krypton develops superhuman powers under Earth's yellow sun. As an adult (Christopher Reeve) he dons red cape and pants, and flies across the world doing good deeds, whilst also hiding behind the alias of mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent. Fellow journalist Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) falls for the muscleman in tights without realising he and her bumbling colleague are one and the same. This special-effects laden adaptation of the DC Comics character also features Marlon Brando in a highly-paid cameo and Gene Hackman as evil mastermind criminal Lex Luthor.


Richard Donner's 1978 epic about the Man of Steel showed how a film about a superhero could be a moving and romantic experience even for people who long ago gave up comic books. Beginning on the icy planet Krypton, the story follows the baby Kal-El, whose rocket ship lands in Smallville, Kansas. He is found there by a childless couple and raised as the shy Clark Kent (the young Kent is played by Jeff East). The film is perhaps most touching in these sequences, with expanses of wheat fields blowing in the wind and with a young man who can't figure out what part in destiny his great powers are meant to play. The second half, with Reeve taking over as Clark/Superman, is bustling, enchanting (the scene in which Superman flies girlfriend Lois Lane--played by Margot Kidder--through the night sky is great date material), and funny, thanks largely to Gene Hackman's sardonic portrayal of nemesis Lex Luthor. --Tom Keogh --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By M. JONES VINE VOICE on 15 April 2006
Format: DVD
Arguably the best superhero movie of all time, and certainly the first decent one, is Superman: The Movie.

From the rousing opening credits to the iconic fly-by at the end, the film remains one of the most enjoyable spectacles you could ever see and even improves on dvd. The sound and picture quality is excellent although the full anamorphic frame is not always utilised in terms of setting scenes, it still looks great on a big tv.

Of course everyone knows the story, but what may surprise newcomers is the time frame in which it happens. Roughly 15/20 minutes are spent on Krypton, and another 25 minutes or so describing Clark Kent's early life. Many criticize this section for various reasons, including Brando's overpriced cameo. However, I think it adds to the epic scale of the film and makes it a true classic.

Christopher Reeeve IS Superman. His performance in both guises is spot-on and everything that he does manages to make you either smile or cheer. Gene Hackman is given plenty of one-liners and (too many) slapstick gags, but still comes across well as the genius who may just get the better of the Man of Steel. Margot Kidder is also terrific as Lois Lane, and although she gets a better-written part in the sequel, she captures the awe and amazement that we are all feeling.

The effects are probably the only thing that breaks the film up and (ironically) takes you away from the film's world. Although very impressive at the time, I'm sure, you just can't believe some of the flying images. Dont get me wrong,I hate CGI, but some of the rear projection shots don't seem to match with Supes' movements occasionally - for instance, one shot over the city sees Superman turning in the air, but the background seems to zoom in and pan etc.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on 20 Mar. 2007
Format: DVD
NB - As is their wont, amazon have unhelpfully bundled the reviews for the 4-disc DVD version of Superman with those for the blu-ray release. This review refers to the 4-disc DVD.

The theatrical version of Richard Donner's Superman still holds up as the cinema's best superhero movie despite three decades' worth of advances in special effects and the arrival of almost every other comic book hero on the big screen, largely because at heart it's more a movie about what it means to be in a position where you have the power to do anything except what you really want. Although it's not without humor - it's dotted with neat little in-jokes that compliment rather than swamp the film, like Clark's brief glance at a payphone that's definitely not fit for his use - it takes itself and its characters seriously, with the absolute belief and integrity that Christopher Reeve brings to the part managing to transcend the inherent ridiculousness of a flying man who wears his underpants outside his tights. Marlon Brando's dignified performance sets the tone perfectly - this is indeed no mere fantasy, but something that carries some real emotional weight, with Kal El's journey to becoming Clark Kent and Superman one of loss and powerlessness despite his abilities. Yet rather than burying the picture the way the relentless one-note gloominess of Bryan Singer's take on the character did in Superman Returns, Donner mixes a classic epic style of filmmaking with a sense of joy and exuberance that makes the film seem a lot shorter than its 143-minutes, and throws in one of the great action setpieces of all time in the helicopter rescue sequence. Great filmmaking and great fun too.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. A. J. Kershaw on 15 Oct. 2007
Format: DVD
Not only is this the best superhero film, its the best film ever made. Yes, better than Star Wars.

Its pure Hollywood. The producers arguing with their director, a delayed release date (Xmas 1978) and a cost of millions. But in the end it turned into a box office smash.

Just how the producers got Oscar winners Brando, Hackman and Glenn Ford to star is a testament to how great the film is. And lets not forget Reeve, Kidder and Beatty.

With a great soundtrack and picture this really is the best film ever made, and the extended version puts the icing on the cake. Brilliant!
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A. Moynihan on 10 Oct. 2003
Format: DVD
I first saw 'Superman, the Movie' when I was only 8 years old. I remember sulking before watching it because my mother wouldn't let me see Jaws 2 which was on the previous night. Furthermore, I assumed Superman would be crap anyway. But I was in for a surprise...

Superman the Movie blew me away, even moreso than Star Wars. I was absolutely flabbergasted by this, the most magical three hours of my childhood. It was an epic of all proportions ... brilliant characters, drama, effects, photography, story, romance, music, etc...

I even remember going to bed that first night and being unable to sleep because my mind had gone into overdrive, thinking about the movie I had just seen. And then, I think I spent the following two years on an hourly basis humming the tune, wearing the custume and/or basing Superman stories around my lego collection.

What I found particularly entrancing about the film was it's original ending.

I'm now 29 years old and that child is long gone. But my love for 'Superman, the Movie' remains ...
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