Superman’s ‘Steel’ appeal flies low in film

There’s something about Superman. 

His story seems to never be told properly. “Man of Steel” is no exception.  

Because the writers, David Goyer and Christopher Nolan, are masterminds behind the “Dark Knight” trilogy, there was much anticipation and hope for “Man of Steel,” yet it failed to ignite the same spark.

Goyer and Zack Snyder, director of “300,” disappointed as writer and director in their action-packed yet lackluster approach.

The film begins as Kal-El, known on Earth as Clark Kent (Henry Cavill), becomes the product of a miraculous birth on the planet of Krypton – the first naturally conceived child on Krypton in countless years. 

Taking a plot line right out of the New Testament, “Steel” creates an almost  Christ-like version of Superman. 

With the help of subliminal placement, such as Kent standing before a stained glass depiction of Jesus as he asks the priest if he should sacrifice himself for man, or Kent falling out of his spacecraft in the shape of a crucifix after his father says, “You can save all of them,” the film supports a dogmatic tone. 

Though the film spends too much time on the birth of Kal-El and the destruction of Krypton, it takes a different direction than most superhero films by solely alluding to Superman’s backstory through flashbacks. 

As an adult, Kent struggles with hiding his powers or saving humanity as General Zod, the alien general of the Kryptonian army responsible for the annihilation of Krypton, comes to Earth in search of Kal-El, who holds the key to rehabilitation of the planet. 

Though filled with elaborate, cinematic battle scenes, they tend to become overdrawn and arduous, a seemingly increasing trend in the genre, almost as if the super-flicks are in a race to see who can draw out the story the longest. However, the longevity fails to deliver emotion and is filled with plot holes, such as Kal-El’s father having the foresight – almost prophetic – to land a ship on earth 18,000 years before with a suit that fits Kal-El perfectly.

Acting is the asset that places this film above any Superman film before it.

Though Amy Adams gives an excellent performance as Lois Lane, the chemistry between Cavill and Adams lacks depth, and their first kiss comes across as forced and awkward. 

The rest of the cast creates a powerful dynamic and somehow manages to tell the uninspiring story wonderfully. 

Though this film can use improvement, it is a decent start to a potentially redeeming series.