I have a ticket to see Man of Steel tomorrow and it has been the movie I have anticipated most this Summer. Reviews have been much more unsteady than I expected, but after seeing Christopher Nolan’s name attached as a producer and an all star cast I am still optimistic. And the Rotten Tomatoes aggregate reviewing system has failed me a few times this Summer already – most notably with After Earth, a movie I liked and predicted would be around 58% on Rotten Tomatoes, which garnered only a 12% – a complete hater fest against Will Smith, his son and M Night. However there are reasons to be concerned with Man of Steel. First off the director is Zach Snyder so don’t be fooled that Christopher Nolan is directing. I enjoyed 300, but I generally find Snyder’s movies to be weak (300 and Sucker Punch – both CGI fests that could not keep my attention). Second, like the film Jesus of Nazareth, the only relative no-name in the cast is the guy playing the Messiah. Henry Cavill is an English actor (for a second I thought he was Australian and I thought “seriously, can these guys stop taking our jobs – who cares about 1 million Mexican migrant workers when we have like 30 Aussies taking multi-million dollar pay days from hardworking American waiters?” But I was wrong.) whose biggest role to date was in the underwhelming, overly CGI’d Immortals. But I have the good fortune of not being a nerd or someone who found the will to live as a child or a teen based on picture books. I read real books, I played sports and I made people laugh with me, not at me. Now this may explain why my career in stand up comedy is so stalled, but it also explains why if Man of Steel is good I will be happy and why if Man of Steel is terrible I will not curse the Heavens (I will save that for the San Antonio Spurs if they beat Lebron James in the NBA Finals).
See, I don’t care if any of these directors or writers stay true to the source material, or the spirit of the original. I am going to watch a movie. If the movie is good, mission accomplished. Oh no Superman is not wearing red underwear outside his suit! Oh no – he is struggling with his identity in this one! If it makes for a better movie then great. If changes and approaches make for a worse movie then that is where it ends for me. Too many freaks and geeks have too much of their adult identity in Hollywood somehow validating their sad and pathetic youth. Is it not enough that Hollywood and pop culture have turned being a “nerd” into a cool thing? That bullies are an endangered species? That everything you ever liked as a kid is being made into a big spectacle for you to enjoy as an adult. Shut the fu*k up already. You cannot go back in time and make friends or kiss a girl or any other things you wish had happened when you were younger and a new Superman will not fill that void – nor should the movie’s failure to live up to your hopes be reason to feel that you are being stuffed into a locker again.
So I hope Man of Steel is good. But if it is not at least the silver lining is a whole lot of tools will lose their minds. Now if you don’t mind I have much more adult things to do – like worry about if Lebron James can beat the San Antonio Spurs. Probably almost as immature and lame as comic book fans except at least the guy I am rooting for actually exists.