What We Want From the Next Superman Movie
Believe it or not there was a time when super heroes did not exist, when the only protagonists in comics were cartoonish characters or violent vigilantes. That all changed when when two geeky teenagers from Cleveland created a hero who was bullet proof, who fought for the common people, and always did the right thing; the pair had created, Superman. Today, the Man of Steel has gained a status or being recognized by anyone in the world. It was because of his status and popularity that in 1978 Richard Donner gave us the now classic film, Superman: The Movie. Casting unknown actor Christopher Reeve as the Man of Steel and surrounding him with a cast of Hollywood superstars led the movie being a massive success.
Unquestionably sequels are bound to happen, the problem being none of the sequels have measured up to the greatness of the first one. The first three sequels caused the franchise to descend into low budget campiness. In 2006, director Brian Singer tried to recapture the magic of Donner’s classic by simply rehashing it but without all the fun. While many liked it, Superman Returns was not the massive success it should have been. So now Warner Bros. is taking a different route; completely divorcing themselves from the previous movies, the next Superman film will reboot the franchise for a new generation. They have turned to the team of Christopher Nolan and David Goyer who are responsible for the massively successful reboot of the Batman series, and the man guiding the project to the silver screen is director, Zack Snyder of 300 fame, who has cast Henry Cavill as Superman. You may wonder what this gifted team of film makers have to do to reignite the franchise; well this is a good starting point.
1. Action: Superman made his debut in Action Comics, yet the last film he starred in had very little in the way of action. So first and foremost the next film needs to thrill audiences by showing them what the Man of Steel is capable of. Snyder and crew have started in the right direction so far, by ditching Lex Luthor and his land schemes, and making the villain of the piece General Zod.
2. Amazing Visual FX: One of the selling points of Donner’s film was that it promised you would believe a man can fly; and boy did they. With the use of creativity and imagination the filmmaker made Chris Reeve soar around Metropolis in a way that had never been seen before. Nowadays filmmakers have become lazy with the use of CGI, but the return of Superman demands something greater. Snyder has proven an expert at making visually stunning films, so we can hope he brings that talent to this project.
3. Keep it Real: One of the elements that Singer missed, which made Donner’s film so successful was that the world Superman lives in must be the world of the audience in order for the hero to have any connection with the audience. What Grant Morrison is doing in Action Comics right now is a prime example of that. By putting him in the real world facing challenges we face everyday, will solve the problem of people relating to Superman.
4. Do Something Different: By now everybody, even those who have never touched a comic in their life knows Superman’s origin by heart. Thus the filmmakers have to come up with a new twist on the story to get people interested. Delve more into the emotional aspects which drove Clark Kent to put on the costume and save the world.
5. It’s Superman not Emoman: One of the biggest complaint from fans about Superman Returns, was that he spent more timing stalking Lois than stopping bad guys. For this film Snyder needs to remedy that, Supes needs to show audiences how cool he is by smacking around giant robots. Not to say the film has to be devoid of any emotional aspects, quite the opposite, they should show audiences how Superman is forced to keep his emotions bottled up in order to do what’s right, but along the way they need to have some fun.