Man of Steel

 

Warner Bros

 

Rating: PG-13

 

Reason for the Rating: Intense sequences of sci-fi violence, action and destruction, and for some language.

 

Plot Summary: A young man from another planet, who was sent to Earth as a baby, must learn to channel his super powers and save Earth.

 

PopFam Recommends: Boys will love this movie.

 

Superman. Clark Kent. These names bring up certain images in your mind, and chances are they look an awful lot like Christopher Reeves. But once you see Man of Steel, the image in your mind will no longer be the same.

 

Man of Steel is an updated version of Superman. The suit is sleek and armor-like, Clark Kent is hunkier (no meek and mild reporter in this movie) and angst-ridden, the plot is darker, and the special effects play a starring role. This is a remake that looks very little like the original, and you'll either love it or hate it.

 

In Superman (the 1978 version), Christopher Reeves played a character who was trying to hide his identity behind the personality of a meek and mild newspaper reporter. He was soft and gentle, wanting to protect his adopted planet from the likes of Lex Luthor. In Man of Steel, Harry Cavill plays a tormented Clark Kent who runs from all relationships, while trying to understand why he was sent to Earth and how he fits into this world. He's a loner who drifts from one job to the next, and is close to no one. That is, until he meets Lois Lane (Amy Adams), a reporter whose life he saves. Of course, being the thorough investigative reporter she is, Lois must find out who this amazing person is who rescued her from certain death.

 

Little of the movie's conflict revolves around Lois and Clark, but centers on General Zod (Michael Shannon), another Kryptonian who was banished to a dark hole for attempting to overthrow the government on Krypton. As with most alien-invasion movies, he has not come in peace, and intends to destroy earth for his own benefit. All of which leads to some amazing special effects with aliens flying into-between-and around high-rise buildings, tanker trucks and warehouses. The action is so fast it's difficult to see at times.

 

While Man of Steel is about Clark's journey to understand his supernatural abilities and how they should be used on Earth, it's also about the legacy of parents and the hope one person can give in any situation. Clark's Krytonian parents, Jor-El (Russell Crowe) and Lara (Ayalet Zurer), are people of inner strength and character who die for what they believe, while his earthly parents, Jonathan (Kevin Costner) and Martha (Diane Lane) instill character into Clark through their words and actions. Clark is who he is, because of both sets of parents and the examples they set for him. Clark is shown having respect for his parents, which is so different from what is typically seen in the media.

 

As with most superhero movies, boys of all ages will love Man of Steel. Yes, it has loose ends and some things that don't make sense, but does it have action? Yes. A villian that is evil but not of nightmares? Yes. A superhero that can fly faster than a speeding bullet and leap tall buildings in a single bound? Yes! And with a great message of family, respect and hope, this is a movie everyone will enjoy.

 

And while you're watching, see how many ways you can compare Superman to Christ? It's pretty cool.

 

Let’s Talk About It

Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:

 

• All of Clark's parents gave him great advice. What is the best advice your parents have ever given you?

 

• How is this Superman like Christ?

 

• We love stories of superheroes who save us from evil, and often speak of "what if" scenarios. As a society that longs for a superhero, why is it so easy to dismiss Jesus as the one who saves us from the ultimate evil?

 

--JW

 

Note: All product-related graphics in this article are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective publisher.

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