connor’s review published on Letterboxd:
revisiting this with the knowledge of what happens in Dawn of Justice just breaks my heart.
a bit obvious that Clark is reading Plato as a teenager, but it works—Zod’s fascistic ideations of control and order as a foil to Clark’s faith in goodness (which, of course, eventually fails him later on and once again breaks my fucking heart) and hope for a better future.
a lifetime of unimaginable burden (“You have to keep this part of yourself secret”) which only grows as the weight of reality crushes down on the desire to help. there’s a great deal of kindness within them, but these films make me extremely sad.
• the transition from the first half of the film to the second isn’t great (and makes the first hour then seem a bit rushed), but the structure generally didn’t bother me at all this time. what a boring and barely incriminating thing to hinge a critique upon.
• Clark’s relationship with his mother is so beautiful and lovely and warm. his home is destroyed twice in this film :(
• the camerawork and editing during the action sequences is just astonishing. Snyder manages to hone in on a fluidity of movement unparalleled in genre cinema this side of the first setpiece in Spider-Man 3, every shot mid-flight pummeling the image into near-abstraction. elsewhere, Snyder uses match cuts to cross vast periods of time and space, but in these sequences the editing hardly registers in the best possible way. incredible momentum.
• i think i understand the hatred for the tornado scene in this even less than i do the Martha scene in BvS? has the general public simply forsaken genuinely empathetic filmmaking?
• everything about Krypton is very smart. colonialist authoritarians led by an ineffectual congress, exploitation of resources leading to the planet’s gradual collapse—misguided determinism in tow—and a corrupt and pointless prison system. really awful that Jor-El wishes for Clark to lead earth astray from the problems which lead to Krypton’s downfall and yet earth ostensibly fails him.
• love how Snyder frames the images of Krypton’s history as political propaganda / classical tableaux
• the entire opening sequence on Krypton is ridiculously good.
• i like that this touches on the narrativization & mythopoeia of the Hero without being too obvious or detracting from the heart of the film; “As you work your way back in time, the stories begin to form a pattern.”
• i now feel confident in saying that Cavill’s performance in this is very good (and he might be a good actor in general??). Adams is also good. kid who plays young Clark not so much, but who cares.
• the way the showdown between Zod and Clark ends is unbearable. he deserves one million hugs.
• guess this means i’ll probably like BvS even more when i rewatch it as well!
anyway this film is really good and the world that rejected this version of Superman is not one i care to be a part of