'Man of Steel treks Into Darkness' - A Review

Now that I'm into a writing halt for quite a while, I am actually reading and not skimming through every other blog, selected at random. This is me, figuring out how even the most elite class of bloggers get out of a writer's block. And I think I'm finally getting the answer. Either I should devote myself into writing about cellphones and apps and tablets and throw big words like 'SEO' and 'Microminiblogospherosomes' here and there, or I could write mystic, romantic poems that don't rhyme. Instead of ending each paragraph with 'the touch of his lips' type phrases, I'm ending up at 'the smell of her underarms' lines. And then I got to meet the third kind.

Movie reviews!


Although frequently referred to as a dependable movie connoisseur, (within some secret underground niche) I have been deprived of a movie-watching experience of any kind after that of Kai Po Che. All Work and No Play is making me a douche-bag  Thanks to a couple of unfinished novels that kept me sane and a decent print of Spielberg's epic cinema Lincoln, which was an instant sleep-inducer. I used it again and again to fall asleep at night, and also kept count.

Twenty-three. 23.

So, among all the chaos that my dedication towards lab-work brought on me, me and my friend Noelle mutually promised to watch a movie together one weekend. We wanted to catch a show of 'Star Trek Into Darkness' in IMAX. Both of us are huge fans of the original series, of the SpocKirk Xeno-bromance, of U.S.S. Enterprise and of Benedict Cumberbatch. But none of that budged our respective professor's resolve of making us work only harder. So both of us kept mum on that plan.

While we thought the movie would 'live long and prosper' it was soon replaced by one of our Bollywood's 100-Crore-Club entry within a couple of weeks!

And by the end of that month, the internet chatter was already abuzz over a new movie. The third trailer of 'Man of Steel' was out and BOY! IT INDEED WAS ONE OF THE MOST AWESOME TRAILERS EVER MADE! Of course, the buzz in town was the involvement of Christopher Nolan - "Snyder kaun? Bhencho, Nolan ka hi movie hai!!"

Indeed, I was eager to watch it ever since I was made aware of Christopher Nolan, David S. Goyer and Hans Zimmer's involvement in the Zack Snyder team, with the first two being essentially involved with the story development and script. Plus, there were Academy Award winners and repeatedly nominated actors all over the trailer! Even in small roles. Amy Adams - so many movies, so few time to mention each. Russel Crowe, Gladiator! Kevin Costner, JFK! I was drooling. But still the biggest impact was Nolan's shadow over the project and Zimmer's background score.

So, me and Noelle decided to make one more promise!


But before I finally got to see Man of Steel, I did manage to sneak into one of the shows of the sequel of the popular sci-fi series rebooted in the 2009 movie with JJ Abrams at its helm, keeping my side of a broken promise. I've seen only two JJ Abrams movies earlier and loved both of them - Super 8, which although had kids as its main characters, was certainly not a movie solely for children and Star Trek, which was more of a good start to a rebooted franchise. Star Trek Into Darkness however, was awaited because of other reasons altogether. One of them being Benedict Cumberbatch.

And the other, his British accent.
'I well woke ovaa your cowld corpsis tu recova my peapl' I LOVE YOU!

Star Trek Into Darkness had a strong script apart from the SFX, something that the likes of Ironman 3 (or any other Marvel comics-turned-movie) always missed! In short (as its now an old movie, it'll be no fun reviewing something that everyone's already seen!), it not only lived up to the expectation of the fans, it also revived memories of a deadly sinister villain long forgotten for 300 years. No really, how many from the current generation would remember the tyrant, Khan Noonien Singh? Although I was always confused with how Khan looked like an over-tanned British sailor, despite his Indian nomenclature (or perhaps Canadian?), I set that thought apart to fit Cumberbatch in. And he did not disappoint!

I especially liked the coolness and precision about that of Cumberbatch's character while carrying out his sinister plans. Something I'll definitely except a superhuman would do easily. Some positives from the movie were the scene where the half-human side of Spock lets go of his Vulcan mannerisms to let out a cry of rage, 'KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA-AN!!', the plot about the torpedoes, the otherwise-doomed decision to warp away from U.S.S. Vengeance, the character Scotty and his accent and how, for a major part of the film, the focus shifted away from Khan while him still being at the helm of events.

Oh, and also how they killed off Captain Pike in the very beginning. Killing off important characters always work wonders! Movie history tells similar tales: remember Santino Corleone, Godfather? Sardar Khan (or Sardar Single), Gangs of Wasseypur? Apollo Creed in one of the Rocky movies? Billy Costigan, The Departed?

I can almost swear by this formula!


But shame shame, Man Of Steel is one movie where that formula didn't work.

Why? Because there's really never been a tragedy with this Superhero (of course his entire planet went KA-BOOM, but that's a different story altogether). Superman is the sugar-daddy of the DC universe, notwithstanding the true meaning of the word. He is a soft spoken father figure with awesome powers who saves the world every time. An American alien with an almost correct sense of humour. He is easily more 'super' than all his friends. His only weakness is a rock. But so what?! He can become a total stranger by merely adding a spectacle to the finely chiseled face, and can even carry off a bright coloured brief over his costume without being eve-teased in New Delhi. Beat that, eh!

Oh Dark Knight, what have you done? 

But much like the curse of Tutankhamen, all the upcoming superhero movies of the DC universe nowadays, suddenly need to be dark, deep and insightful like that of The Dark Knight. This is precisely the point where Man of Steel derailed. In a story needing no tragedy, quite a few were wrongly introduced in many places. For starters, Superman doesn't brood! That's Bruce Wayne/Batman's job!!

The story was faulty, wrong and abrupt. After introducing the story to quite a few issues like the Al Gore-ish 'Fight Global Warming to save Krypton!' and Taare Zameen Par-ish 'Let Kal El choose his own destiny!' and also the case of an alienated extraterrestrial kid's 'E.T. go home!' crisis, they suddenly hurried everything into Clark's conversion into Superman. And why the cliched snap at the foster-father just before the latter dies? Did we not watch the Spiderman movies already?

Even the other actors disappointed big time! Except perhaps Kevin Costner. Also Russel Crowe can do nothing wrong when he's wearing Sandor Clegane's get-up from the Game of Thrones! Biggest disappointment was Amy Adams. She managed to render dumbness to the character of a smart-ass Pulitzer winning journalist! A better Lois would perhaps be one from the magic of animation, like they did with Snowy in the Tintin movie.

Visual effects were pretty good, but also it was nothing that we haven't already seen!


The only takeaway from this no-chaddi Superman is his super good-looks! That, and with all the British accent, I think I know why the girls are loving this movie, way more than us guys!


  1. I just lost the desire to watch the movie now!

    1. No-no. Do watch, if you like action and good graphics! But all that thrashing makes little effect, as we all know how much Superman is affected by them ...Go, if you like excellent looking men, and a modest superman (without his undergarments hanging out, that is!)