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3.7 out of 5 stars
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3.7 out of 5 stars
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on 2 January 2007
This film is still very good...but having watched King Kong first of all in the HD DVD films I have, I have to say I was slightly disappointed. It just doesn't look like this film was shot in HD? Am i wrong? theres only one scene that stands out to me and looks amazing...the bit when Clark is a teenager running through the crops that looks true HD. Having view some films I must say bright colourful scenes really stand out and look stunning on HD.

definitely worth buying for your collection but not one of the best HD films on offer. Do some studios use different HD encoding because Doom and King Kong both look superb.
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on 28 November 2006
`Superman Returns' has a lot going for it. I can only imagine the problems trying to replace Christopher Reeve. Reeve captured the essence of both Superman and Clark Kent with a warm, compassionate, funny and yet determined performance - and he managed to look exactly like him too. So, what can be said of Brandon Routh? Thankfully, Routh is excellent. His is a much more restrained Clark Kent, as the bumbling and fumbling of Christopher Reeve's version is brought into 2006 with a more mellow geekiness from Routh. For the modern Clark Kent, this works perfectly. Routh's Superman also seems a little more restrained and straight-faced than Reeve's, but thankfully is still allowed the occasional naive-sounding one-liner. All in all, a good start from a newcomer with some mighty boots to fill. Another with big boots to fill is Kevin Spacey. The difference here is that Spacey is a highly experienced actor and he brings his typical calmness to the role of Lex Luthor. A little more of him wouldn't have gone amiss though.

It almost goes without saying that any current big-budget movie will probably be CGI-laden and modern technology gives a character like Superman the opportunity to do some really incredible stuff. The early action scene involving Superman and a Boeing 777 is shot fantastically and is easily the best section of the film. Mind you, it isn't all perfect; watch the final shot of Superman doing a patrol around the Earth and it`s obvious that Routh's face has been fixed onto a CGI body.

It is also worth tipping the imaginary hat to Singer for his approach to this blockbuster. Instead of going for a plotless, sterile, action-laden behemoth, he actually tries to bring some feeling, relevance and meaning to the world of Superman. It's also nice to see this film following on (albeit loosely) from `Superman 2', thus bringing back Marlon Brando and almost making us forget the loathsome third and fourth films.

So where's the missing star got to? Maybe Kate Bosworth took it with her. In the first four films, as well as in `Lois & Clark' and `Smallville', Lois Lane is a feisty, sharp, driven, and gutsy reporter. Kate Bosworth's version is not. While I accept that the one the film's themes is change through the passage of time, I cannot accept that Lois would have changed that much, nor would I want her to. The dynamic of Lois' streetwise drive paired with Kent's apparent naivety and clumsiness has been a strong part of what made the partnership so watchable. Kate Bosworth doesn't deliver at all and it's a real shame.

Lex Luthor is a great villain, and his wanting revenge on Superman for the years he spent in prison is OK as far as super-villain motivation goes. But the idea of him being some overblown property developer seems a little weak; just compare that for a moment against Ra's Al Ghul's motivation for wanting to wipe out Gotham in `Batman Begins' and you'll see what I mean. More thought required for the sequel.

The film has pacing problems too. After the initial rush of Superman's return and the Boeing 777 scene the film seems to go into a very long lull, with only some minor action scenes to show Superman in action, and the final stand-off isn't exactly rivetting.

Finally, I can just about live with the rest of the world not being able to see that Kent is Superman, but when this is added to the fact that they (presumably) took off at the same time, spent exactly the same amount of time away, and then coincidentally reappear at the same time is utterly preposterous. Hercule Poirot not required for that mystery, I think.

The thing about the aforementioned faults is that they should be easily fixable, which could make for a tremendous sequel. It's also worth remembering that when Singer made `X-Men' he almost used that film to set the scene for the superior follow-up,'X2', so all bodes well for the next film. So, taking `Superman Returns' in the context of a scene-setter, it serves its purpose very well. But, the problem is that it too is a sequel (of sorts), to `Superman 2', and in that respect it fails as it is a slightly less enjoyable film.
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on 30 April 2009
I must admit that Superman has never been one of my favourite spandex-clad do-gooders but I do quite like the original Superman I & II films. This latest film is very disappointing. Brandon Routh does a reasonable Christopher Reeve impersonation but Kate Bosworth's Lois Lane is shockingly bad. The plot is incoherent and the film is far too long, spending inordinate amounts of time focusing on mawkish sentimentality. The effects are good (especially when Superman gets shot point-blank in the eyeball) but I'd rather have my brains scooped out by a blind monkey with a blunt spoon than watch this again.
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on 9 January 2008
got superman on blu ray and i was a little disappointed. not so much of a different than a standard dvd.but better on blu ray. the HD transfer is poor and should have been better the sound is ok on DD 5.1 but the pcm 5.1 should have been better if only there was one a big shame.i we recommend this movie but don't expect too much
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on 17 August 2006
Mmmmm not a bad film, not exploding in your face, but a nice enough stating point for some reaily great future films, also at slight angles brandon does actualy look like C.reeve, which is a nice touch from the casting guys ( well done )and brandon does quite a good job for an un-known?. Spacey is good as well but that still has a lot to do with the script ( which is well done ) and what a tough job for anybody to do, so overall a film worth watching to get you re-started to the upgraded superman world.

Regards

Des
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on 13 October 2007
For me, something just didn't seem right when I read about this movie in the months before its release. The director, Bryan Singer, was being too reverent, too enthusiastic, too much of a fanboy. The whole thing smelled of self-indulgence, mostly due to his intention to both pay homage to Richard Donner's original Superman movie, and re-write everything that came after it, as if trying to convince the audience that the earlier sequels hadn't happened. What is the point of that? He should have either made a sequel to all of the previous four movies, or gone back to the start and told the story over again, like Batman Begins. Whilst Donner's Superman is undeniably a great movie, I also wasn't fond of the way in which Singer focused totally on Superman's cinematic heritage in order to tell his story, and drew nothing new from the original comic books; everything in Singer's movie is a direct extension of ideas from Donner's, which is quite a lazy course of action to take when attempting a Casino Royale-style re-boot for the series.
Far too much gravitas is placed on the use of footage of Marlon Brando that didn't make the original cut of Superman, but it's a creepy idea, considering he's dead and would never have given his consent to use it if he was still alive. The performances are nothing to write home about, with the one unlikely exception of Brandon Routh, who manages to follow Christopher Reeve's example and draws a definite distinction between the characters of Clark Kent and Superman. Kate Bosworth is a limp Lois Lane, not as funny as Margot Kidder, and certainly nowhere near as sexy as Teri Hatcher, whilst James Marsden (who Singer must fancy to keep casting him) gives another anonymous turn in the thankless role of Lois' beefcake husband. But the big disappointment is Kevin Spacey's Lex Luthor, which is never as distinctive as Gene Hackman's take on the same part, and just feels like every other Kevin Spacey villain. In fact, it's a bit of a letdown to find the filmmakers once again using Luthor as the movie's bad guy, considering all the other adversaries they could have plucked from the comics.
All these objections to the movie are purely cosmetic, though; the real problem with the film is that it just didn't hang together in any way that made sense. Superman returns to Metropolis after a five-year absence, and so does Clark Kent, after a `trip' of the same length of time, and nobody notices the connection? Please. The big action set piece, in which Superman stops a plane from crashing, is fantastic, but it happens half-way through the film, and nothing half as exciting happens again. The narrative is left deliberately open-ended, presumably because, like every other super-hero franchise currently being mined, the producers are counting on sequels. But if they let Singer loose on Superman again, they had better make sure he has a tighter script, and brings in some fresh inspiration from the source material. It's amazing that Singer abandoned the X-Men franchise to make this film, and yet it somehow managed, against the odds, to be less entertaining than the substituting Brett Ratner's X-Men movie.
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on 7 August 2006
What a film! Never before have i enjoyed a comic book film so much in my life. From the second you hear the familiar superman theme tune and see the old school credits you are in for a treat as you get to see some of the best special effects ever and some superb acting, notably Brandon Routh and Kevin Spacey. I wasn't sure whether Routh would be able to fill the legendary red boots sadly vacated by Christopher Reeve but i felt he did a fantastic job and he even bears an uncanny resemblence! I was also shocked to see they had cast Kate Bosworth as Lois Lane as she looks so much younger than Margot Kidder did in superman 2 and this film is supposed to be set 5 years after! However she too does not disapoint and gives a good performance as the feisty reporter who captures Supermans heart. It's not just the acting that's strong the story doesn't slow down for a second, from the minute Routh reveals the famous logo from beneath his shirt there is non stop action as Superman helps save thousands of people from around the world.With Superman so busy after a 5 year absence the superb Kevin Spacey is plotting the man of steels downfall. I for one can't wait for the dvd to watch this awesome film again and i would strongly recommend anyone to watch this film.
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on 4 June 2006
'Even though you've been raised as a human being you're not one of them. They can be a great people, Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you...my only son.'

Kal-El (Brandon Routh) returns to earth after a five year journey to find out if he was in fact the sole survivor from his home-world Krypton. In the years that have passed Superman's life has moved on. Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth) has had a child with another man and society has learned to successfully survive without him. The challenges faced on his return are ones of bridging the gap between Lois and himself and learning to find a place in a society where he is now redundant. Lex Luthor (Kevin Spacey), without Superman to testify against him, has been released from prison and is scheming to remove Superman completely through the use of Superman's own powers. As he struggles to stop Luthor's plans of cataclysmic destruction upon his beloved adopted world, Superman embarks on a journey of redemption that takes him from the depths of the ocean to the far reaches of outer space.

Superman and Superman II serve as the back-story, or, as Bryan Singer put it, a 'vague history', in order to ground the story effectively in the now almost biographical story of Superman. Marlon Brando repeats his role as Superman's biological father, Jor-El, from Superman, using computer-generated techniques, to help maintain consistency. Superman's ever dedicated following have not been pushed aside during the making of this film and attention to fans and experts of Superman have enabled Singer to create a big budget movie with the attention to detail hard nosed fans should apprecitate. The new chapter of Superman's life fits comfortably in with the old.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 22 April 2015
Superman fans waited what seemed like a long time to see their lycra-clad hero back in action. Then they got this. In a world filled with reboots and remakes you have to give the film-makers credit for actually daring to make a sequel to the original Christopher Reeves quadrology. According to ‘Superman Returns’ the ‘Man of Steel’ went back to his home planet for five years and has only just got back. Of course now he looks slightly different (like Brandon Routh to be precise), but obviously acts exactly like Reeves and his portray of the character.

It certainly feels like part of the original set of films, but, for some reason, it just doesn’t work so well now. Perhaps cinema goers are more used to heroes who have a ‘darker’ background and general and outlook on life. Routh’s Superman is totally squeaky clean and people are probably just getting a little tired of the fact that he can change his clothes and put on a pair of glasses, therefore rendering him completely undetectable to everyone (including those who know him best). The Christopher Reeves movies were campy and you could kind of ignore things like that. I think people now desire a little more realism and it’s hard to take it all seriously.

Kevin Spacey adds some noteworthy prestige to the story, playing Superman’s arch nemesis Lex Luthor. However, despite being an actor as talented as Spacey, he’s not really given that much to do. He’s not that threatening and, seeing as he’s only a human, you know he has to get his hands on some of the mythical mineral from Superman’s homeworld, Kryptonite, in order to really threaten the titular hero. Luthor has a plan which revolves around creating a new land mass, which will basically destroy the continent of America in the process. He doesn’t really have an army, nor the means to defend his new homeland, making his whole plot a little ridiculous.

The special effects are okay and obviously they’ve been cranked up since the eighties – including the (seemingly mandatory) CGI effects for the set pieces.

I think the best part of the film is the music. It’s taken straight from the original films and when it starts to play, it does feel like you’re right back in the eighties. I guess this only applies to people of a certain age (like myself!) to get this one.

‘Superman Returns’ isn’t bad. It’s just about twenty years too late o be relevant. It kind of gets overshadowed by all the other – far superior – superhero movies currently on offer. I’m guessing it will probably be more forgiven by those of us who still like the originals and it will probably keep young boys happy on a Saturday afternoon. Otherwise, the modern generations will only really like ‘Superman’ through his newly-rebooted persona as ‘The Man of Steel.’
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on 26 January 2015
No one will ever replace Christopher Reeve as Superman. He was Superman and always will be. Even the artists who drew the character after the first film came out made him look more like Reeve in the comics.You can't argue with that.To enjoy Superman Returns you need to accept that a new actor needed to step in to those big red boots.With the recent Man of Steel release it's proved that people are ready to move on (even though that movie doesn't really do anything for me.I mean, really.It's so morose and stern in its tone that I feel scared to speak out against it in case it hears me and whacks me over the head once again with its message of sincerity). There is an argument to say that we don't need anymore Superman films, but Hollywood could never do that, not with all the money and franchising opportunities at stake.The world is more complicated now than when Superman first saved Lois Lane from certain death at the hands of a Metropolis pavement and Superman Returns uses this to its advantage. Clark is lost in the contemporary world and in every frame of Brandon Routh's performance you can see his heart breaking. He hears and can see almost everything, but the one person he cares most about in all the world, is out of reach.No change there for Clark, but even his blue tights and outer underwear can't get him what he wants this time, not even a 'thank you' for saving her life for the zillionth time. I don't want to give anything more away in case you haven't seen it, but this film is a love story, a one way love story. Oh, there's action sequences (I love it when a bullet bounces off of Superman's eye) and beauty shots (he flies to the sun for a bit of a recharge, no sunscreen required), but mostly it's a one way love story from Singer to Donner and Kal-El to Lois. It's just a shame there isn't a little more love from us to this different take on a cinematic legend.
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