Surely, someone has done a list running down exactly what Visionary Director Zack Snyder™ considers to be a "superhero film" under the tutelage of Christopher Nolan. Which is to say that Man of Steel is incredibly surprising since Snyder isn't allowed to indulge his usual tools of speed ramping and covers while providing beautiful destruction.
And oh what destruction he can wrought.
Starting on Krypton and speeding through the essentials of Superman's origins (he's a baby, sent through space, shit…
There is so much happening here: a random cameo from Gérard Depardieu; a flying robot that becomes a suicidal piano player; Billy Boyd drinking--and, oh yes, the unexplained flying robot supposed to help with therapy that instead becomes sentient and turns itself into a bomb. At every turn, there's a new descent into WTF that made this a personal favorite for Avant Retard of 2011.
The hopeful end of Nichols' "Dads" trilogy takes a slight step into the realm of Southern mythos before quickly mooring itself in reality. Aside from having another entry in the "holy shit Matthew McConaughey" column, "Mud" takes Nichols down the road for a teaching parable about what's expected from fathers, sons and the expectation of tradition will ruin a life.
Also marks David Wingo getting his country fried rock on along with a Dirty Three track from "Cinder."