I recently learned that my buddy Sean has been working off and on out of Pennsylvania, not that far across the NJ/PA border. We made plans to meet up after work. I took the train back to my train station as usual, then drove the hour ride down to Willow Grove, PA. The initial plan was just dinner and drinks. While driving on my way on the PA Turnpike, I contacted him with a crazy idea. “How about we also go see a movie?” He was in, so now the evening got more interesting. I met up with him at this hotel room, changed to shorts and sandals (damn, it has been a hot and humid week), and then we went out for dinner. After much researching, we ended up at Miller’s Willow Grove Ale House for dinner.
There was a rather long wait, so we hit bar #1 at the restaurant, but it was packed. We walked over to bar #2, and still packed. We ordered, then walked over to a uncrowded corner of the restaurant to stand and drink, and wait for our number to come up on the big board. We ended up standing next to the windows, between two tables of guests. In hindsight, I don’t know if that was weird or not, but no one said anything, and the place was pretty crowded on a Thursday night. We eventually ordered dinner, and chatted for a long while. It’s been a very long time since we saw each other or hung out together, so this was huge.
A little after 9pm, we got the check, and hightailed it for the car, and to the local Regal theater to see the 9;30pm showing of Man of Steel. Let me tell you — it’s a Thursday night in a theater in a suburb of Philadelphia. It’s 9:30pm, and this movie came out more than a month ago, yet there are maybe 15-20 other people here with us. I figured most people had gotten their kicks and seen the film by now. Go figure.
The film was written by David S. Goyer, and directed by Zach Snyder, is a new origin story for Superman. The origin is mostly the same, though some things have been altered or embellished this time around. And I don’t really care too much these days, so carry on, gentlemen. The film stars Henry Cavill as Clark Kent / Kal-El, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, and Michael Shannon as General Zod. They are the primary folks in this film, but Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Christopher Meloni, Diane Lane are also key characters. And yes, Laurence Fishburne plays Perry White. The film follows the general and familiar story line for Kal-El’s arrival to Earth. However, Zack Snyder takes a different approach by mixing up the order of how scenes are played. It starts initially on Krypton, but the film jumps back and forth in time from the present day to scenes where Clark is growing up, and then back to the present. I know some people didn’t like it, but I didn’t mind it. The acting in the film was good, but I wasn’t a big fan of Amy Adams as Lois Lane. Sorry, Amy, but you’re no Margot Kidder.
Besides the plot holes the size of Krypton in this film, the film itself wasn’t very joyful. I also didn’t feel like it had a lot of heart. Do you remember in the 1978 Richard Donner original where Clark discovers his powers, and there was this wonderment about what he could do? In this film, it’s more scary and somber for Clark. Maybe because it’s 2013 and we’re so somber in everything after 9/11, but I always liked that depiction of a young Clark Kent floating for the first time, or outrunning that train.
BTW, does anyone have any idea how Lois Lane gets around the ruins of Metropolis so fast? She gets everywhere pretty quickly, and I couldn’t figure that out.
More importantly, without revealing any spoilers, I’m pretty sure Superman could have resolved the entire film about 20-30 mins earlier without the big climax. However, then you couldn’t have the big climax, I suppose. Ah, you crazy, kooky, Hollywood screenwriters. Always making things happen for no good reason.