Written by Griffin Banks
It’s clearly brought to us by the director of 300 and the writer of Batman Begins. It hits the ground running, I thought the first act was pretty brilliant actually. It plops the viewer right into the thick of things with the birth of Kal-El, dragon vs. space ship Kryptonian civil war, and Jor-El doing his best Liam Neeson in Clash of the Titans cosplay to go all Way of the Dragon on Zod and his cronies. I have to give Zack Snyder, the king of hit-and-miss (300 was meh, Sucker Punch was abominable, and Watchmen was great), for employing a left-field flashback device to retell the nearly century old origin. You have the Peter Parker-esque high school melodrama, and Clark doing a little soul searching while co-staring on what I assume was Deadliest Catch (which was a nice nod to the “Fisherman of Men” Jesus Christ symbolism peppered throughout the film). The whole thing screamed Superman: Birthright to me, which happens to be my favorite Superman story, with a rough and tumble proto-Superman trekking across the globe in an attempt to “find himself”, which includes wrestling jungle cats and cracking down on warlords before he settles upon donning the tights. That story also empathizes the shadow of Jor-El, which from Russell Crowe’s half an hour plus screen time evidently figured into the final cut as well. Which is why I was floored to find out that the writer of the story Mark Waid spoke out against the film. Hell, he was literally kicking and screaming in this seat when Superman snapped Zod’s neck like the friggin’ Punisher when he’s out of ammo. In his personal review, he said it’s something that really stuck with me and sums up all misgivings I have.