You know what is funny...
Every time I hear someone bash SUPERMAN RETURNS or Bryan Singer, I really have to laugh, simply because if you hated SR then you hated Richard Donner's SUPERMAN THE MOVIE.
Essentially the movies are the same, Superman the Movie's plot ripped out and put in 2006 context. The way I see that film, is it was Bryan's "love letter" to his childhood and to the character of Superman. Let's face it, Superman had been gone from the public eye for years. DC's only really hero that has been in our face since the late 80's and 90's was Batman. Even after the Animated sereis ended, the shelves were still full of Batman figures. Superman was always just an extra hero to help out Batman. Anyway, The Singer crew had to reintroduce Superman to a world where everyone likes their heros flawed. I think that was one of the points Bryan was trying to get across, the world marched along and changed in a lot of ways (morally)from when Superman was around(why the world doesn't need Superman)and now how do we fit this character who has always pretty much been a squeaky clean image of goodness into a world that is very damaged. Is there a place for Superman?
I always read about the films that were supposed to come out to reintroduce Superman, all dark and twisted. Superman in black latex suit with wires and junk coming out of his body...sorry but that's not Superman to me. What was great about SR to me, was that the Singer and Crew embraced the vision that Richard Donner and Tom Mankiewicz set out to create back in 1978.
Another thing I don't get is when people complain about the performances....The way I saw it, Brandon Routh protrayed the Man of Steel with as much charisma and compassion that the immortal Christopher Reeve gave that character. Kevin Spacey as Lex? Come on, he was perfect, menacing and yet still had a sly sense of humor(I never thought Gene Hackman did Lex that well, maybe it was just the wigs didn't do it for me). Kate Bosworth? Okay, her Lois wasn't the "His Girl Friday" Lois I always expect but at lease she doesn't have a horse face like Margot Kidder....
Why do people complain about the love story in SR? Wasn't there just about the same mush in 78 movie? Can anyone remember the "Can you read my mind" sequence that was pretty mushy and for the time, cheesy. What? Was it the whole love triangle thing with the kid that people didn't like? Well, after 7 seasons of watching Tom Welling and Kristen Kreuk go back and forth:
Clark: I'm sorry
Lana: No, I'm sorry Clark.
Clark: I love you Lana but I can't be with you
Lana: But Clark you can tell me anything.
Chloe: Hi guys! It's Chloe and I love Clark!
Lex: Yes it is I Lex and I love Clark also...Let's move to Massachusetts!
Come on, you guys should be used to the soap opera that is Superman!! There's always been that element to Superman even going back to the old George Reeves show.
The kid, well, hey it's a sign of the times. There are lots of single moms and people who get into relationships with someone who has a kid. Again, I think Singer and Co. were just trying to modernize Superman. Same thing with the plot of "land." In the 78 version Lex used a nuke missle. In SR Lex used the Kryptonian Crystals all for the same purpose the whole "my father said land yada yada" deal.
It's like I said, to hate on SR is just kind of dumb. Okay maybe you didn't like it but just take a step back on see SR for what it is....a 2006 version of the 1978 film with better costumes, sets, and special effects. Be happy Superman didn't get warped into some "Matrix" kind of fluff. It's a tribute movie and if Bryan gets the chance I'm sure with the sequel he will take those same elements and put his own spin on it and give us something new and exciting and something that is a little bit of a throwback just like X2.
Final thought: I think Chris Nolan's Batman films are the closest we are going to get to perfection when it comes to Batman. Sure Tim Burton's Batman was pretty to look at but plot wise he totally screwed that up...but I guess that's another post.
Batman Begins was perfection. The Dark Knight will be perfection with a side of fried gold!