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on 22 May 2017
always been a big superman fan
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on 27 September 2008
For this third installment, the producers decided to inject a more modern twist into the Superman mythos via Richard Pryor's antics and the dependence on computer technology theme. The result was met with mixed reviews but did provide Chris Reeve the opportunity to turn his dual role into a triple. Not only does he play Clark Kent and Superman, but also an evil Superman that manifests after exposure to synthetic Kryptonite (a plot device repeated at nauseum on the 'Smallville' TV series). The fight sequence between Clark Kent and his evil counterpart plays like a scene right out a Superman comic book! Also, Margot Kidder's Lois Lane is not given much screen time but Annette O' Toole's Lana Lang (another 'Smallville' TV series staple) fills the role of Clark's old love interest nicely. The flying shots are easily the best of the franchise and Reeve is definitely the most buff he's ever been making him the most realistic physical embodiment of Superman to date. Unlike the previous DVD release, there are extras this time around including a commentary by the producers, a 1983 'Making of' special hosted by Chris Reeve, and almost 20 minutes of deleted scenes! In closing, while this movie isn't quite as magical as the first two Superman films, a terrific performance by Christopher Reeve and some nice supplemental material makes it worthy of another look on DVD.
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on 25 July 2013
I loved this as a child but its tone is different to the preceding two. Happily there is no Lex et al, but an equally silly character has too much of a role - Richard Prior as Gus Gorman. The villain's sidekick, Lorelei (Pamela Stephenson), is ripe for a really interesting part. She is caught reading and debating the philosopher Kant, only to hide the tome and start filing her nails when someone comes in. I wish we'd seen more of the woman who put on a ditzy persona and why. We have two people working for the villain Ross Webster who are not really bad people, just waylaid. That's quite mature and nuanced for a superhero movie - but it's not developed. There's a scene where Gus recounts Superman's saving activities, giving Prior a chance to show off rather than Superman - which is more dramatic and surely what most viewers want.

Superman going to the dark side is the most interesting part of the film, as is the gentle romance with Lana Lang (Annette O'Toole) who I came to prefer to Lois, who's not in it much.

Some more sensitive children might find Vera's metamorphosis into a robot a bit scary.
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on 4 June 2017
Ok film but not as good as the second one. Not as child friendly either which was a shame. Dvd arrived very quickly and was in perfect condition.
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on 17 January 2014
Wealthy businessman Ross Webster discovers the hidden talents of Gus Gorman, a mischievous computer genius.

Ross decides to abuse his talents, in a way to help Webster with his plans for economic control.

When the man of steel interferes, something must be done about him.

When Gus' synthetic Kryptonite fails to kill Superman, it turns him in an evil incarnation of his former self. The tar-laced Kryptonite pits man against himself, setting up a Superman vs. Superman battle.....

In terms of franchises, Superman is one of the strangest ones going. The first two defined the comic book movie, and were two of the best hero movies made until the advent of Marvel and the releasing of a comic book movies almost every week.

Then the this and four were released, and killed the franchise, and then Singer made another, which was arguably a little bit boring.

There are some good things about this movie though, and the pivotal point of this movie was the bad Superman sub-plot. Its not just the best part of the movie, it's one of the stand out scenes of the whole five movies.

Seeing Reeve let himself go a bit is wonderful, and it's a nice change from all the niceness that oozes from the hero.

Pryor is good, but is very out of place in a film like this. A little humour is good, but when a film turns to almost parody on the strength of a stand up comedian, it doesn't have faith in the movie, hence the audience losing faith.

Vaughn is a weak substitute for Hackman, and acts more like a child than a megalomaniac.

But there is still fun to have, the opening montage is genuinely funny, and the final scene with the robot lady still freaks me out a bit today, but as a sequel to two wonderful movies, it stinks...
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 29 September 2011
After being caught for a money making computer scam, Gus Gorman is recruited by unscrupulous multimillionaire Ross Webster. With Gorman's computer expertise, Webster plans to take complete economic control. But first there is the considerable issue of eradicating Superman to deal with.

Richard Lester, as everyone now knows, inherited Superman 2 from the jettisoned Richard Donner. Here we have a complete Richard Lester Superman film, and from the extended slapstick opening we are aware that this is far lighter in tone than the previous two films. Lester's credits are steeped in comedy traditions, so it's no real surprise that Superman 3 is more airy comic book than troubled caped crusader. This is something that many franchise fans are completely unforgiving about. Which is a shame, because viewed as a comic book bit of nonsense it's a rather enjoyable film, certainly it's the one with the most fun approach. The action is very well put together, with a franchise highlight as Clark Kent gets to fight a clearly off kilter Superman, and the comedy, if accepted on its own terms, is very rewarding.

However, it only works as entertainment if one can cast off the mythology of Superman and his fantastical complexities. To do so is not a crime against ones superhero beliefs, it's just an acceptance that it's a different approach, and that Superman 3's only real crime is not being as good as the first two franchise belters. Hey, just think, Quest For Peace was around the corner... 6/10
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Although modestly profitable, Superman III was enough of a disappointment to convince both the Salkinds and Warner Bros. to call it a day as far as their direct involvement in the series went. It certainly magnifies all the problems in Richard Lester's version of Superman II and throws in a slew of new ones for bad measure.

For a couple of minutes the film looks like it might have some potential, even opening in an unemployment office in a passing nod to the real world and Reaganomics, but no sooner have the main titles begun than Lester is back to his slapstick tricks, throwing in a prolonged series of silent movie pratfalls that really belong in another movie entirely. Indeed, it's a shame that Lester didn't make that movie instead, as he really doesn't seem at all interested in Superman, who, along with Clark Kent, has little to do in the first two-thirds of the picture and is sidelined in favor of Richard Pryor. A man whose 80s work not only squandered his hard-won reputation as a cutting-edge stand-up comedian but also made Eddie Murphy look like a man who's heard of quality control, he's never remotely funny here and unfortunately he's firmly in bland family entertainment mode. For the first half he's inoffensive enough before becoming an increasingly absurd and irritating figure: quite what anyone was thinking having him imitate General Patton in one scene we may never know. Worse still, in a world where Richard Pryor can survive skiing off a skyscraper completely unharmed, what's super about Superman? Yet there are far worse performances than Pryor's on display here. Pamela Stephenson overacts horribly as a blonde bimbo who reads Kant and keeps on forgetting she's supposed to be dumb while Robert Vaughn's villain seems more like a guest star on a bad children's' TV sitcom than much of a challenge to the Man of Steel. The feeling of bad TV is only heightened by a plot revolving around computers and early video game graphics that look positively primitive today - nothing dates as quickly as 'tomorrow's' technology.

To save money, the film even breaks cinema's cardinal rule of show, don't tell in one seemingly endless scene where, rather than showing the Man of Steel saving the day, Richard Pryor spends five minutes talking about what he did while wrapping himself up in a tablecloth. Well, it's cheaper than special effects... and while this doesn't cut as many corners as Cannon's fourth film, saving money is always high on the agenda. The star cast is anything but (after Pryor, Robert Vaughn's the only 'big' name in it) while Margot Kidder gets relegated to two brief scenes as punishment for publicly badmouthing the producers for firing Richard Donner from Superman II. By pushing her off the stage so quickly and replacing her with a romantic rival in the shape of Annette O'Toole's Lana Lang (forget the unlikelihood of Supes forgetting he cannot have a normal relationship), the producers simply showed how little they understood that the relationship between Lois and Clark was at the very heart of the first film's success: lose that relationship and you've only got half a hero. Or a quarter, since the plot involves some bad synthetic Kryptonite making Superman go bad.

This section does at least showcase the best of Reeve's performance as the evil Superman, showing a convincing vein of self-loathing as he drinks himself into a foul mood and circles the world doing bad deeds, and the film briefly comes alive as he literally battles Clark Kent for his own soul in a junkyard dustup. Unfortunately once he's triumphant it's on to a very pedestrian and unimaginative finale that pits him against a less than supercomputer that's largely played for laughs that aren't forthcoming. Yet poor as this is, even worse was yet to come for the franchise with Superman IV: The Quest for Peace...

Extras on the Deluxe Edition (but not the standard film-only release) include audio commentary by producers Ilya Salkind and Pierre Spengler, 11 deleted scenes, vintage 49-minute documentary The Making of Superman III and the theatrical trailer.
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I enjoyed the first 2 Superman movies and expected this 3rd instalment to be just as good.

From the first 30 seconds I realised this was going to be a challenge. It starts off with comedy and does not relent. The story suffers from the get go with a very thin plot and average acting. Richard Pryor tries to save the film but he is poorly written into the film and looks very out of place.
As a film its just not enjoyable, the story goes nowhere, the computer is so unbelievable it looks foolish.
This is a real clunker of a movie and I regret getting this on BluRay, a waste of $10

Sadly Superman IV is also poor and is only slightly better than III.
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on 17 February 2010
I always have fond memories of this as a child, and while it is not the best entry in the series it does contain some good moments. I especially think it's funny that when the titular hero turns bad, the most evil acts he can perpetrate are to variously straighten the Leaning Tower of Pisa, blow out the Olympic torch and smash a mirror with some peanuts!

The comedic elements do tend to take over, not least in the opening sequence when Pamlela Stephenson causes a whole heap of havoc (though this bit is quite well done, almost balletic). All in all it's probably going to be kids who'll enjoy it the most, though I wonder if kids today would freak when Annie Ross get's robotised. I didn't sleep for weeks after seeing that.

The accompanying Documentary is a vintage one and it's worth a look, it lasts about an hour and it's a fascinating peak behind the scenes.
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on 22 April 2007
I remember when I used to watch this as a kid. It was my favourite Superman film and I always used to watch it everytime it was on. What I used to (and still do) like about this one was the the 20-30 minute sequence where Superman turns bad.

The plotline sees Superman going up against Robert Vaughn's 'Ross Webster', owner of a big bussiness company, and Richard Pryor's computer whizz Gus Gorman. Together they plan to steal the world's oil for their own selfish reasons. Meanwhile Clark Kent (Superman)goes back to Smallville and is reunited with his teenage sweetheart Lana Lang (Annette O Toole), who now has a young boy called Ricky. At one point Ross Webster decides that Superman is the only thing that can stop him from claiming the oil so he and his sister Vera, girlfriend Lorelei and Gus plan to 'assasinate' Superman by creating some kryptonite. However the kryptonite they creat has something wrong with it and upon receiving it at an awards ceremony in Smallville for saving a large part of America and also Ricky's life in a seperate incident, it gradually turns Superman evil instead of weakening him. Once he turns evil, the world around him watches him as he strikes fear and disgrace into those he once protected, the innocent. This all lead to a big fight between the good side and the bad side of Superman in two different entities in a juckyard, resulting in the good side eventually apprehending the evil side and going back to righting the wrongs he did around the world.

Now I watch the film on my DVD and I have to say that, after the first two films being special effects extravaganzas, that it's quite a nice change to have this film focus more on the plotline and characters. If you think Christopher Reeve makes an excellent superhero then you should see him as the evil Superman because he also makes an excellent supervillain. It's just a shame that he didn't get many other notable roles after he donned the cape. Robert Vaughn's character, althpugh he's a good villain, he is in fact just Lex Luthor from the comics with a different name. Richard Pryor, although he's funny, he should've toned it down a little because he is a little too wacky. Annette O Toole is excellent as Lana Lang and not bad looking either. Gavan o Halirilay is great as Clark's old school bully Brad.

The only bad thing about the film is that there are some characters that are just a little too OTT and annoying. Other than that it's great. Certainly much better than Superman 4, which sucked, and Superman Returns which isn't great. *****
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