View Poll Results: Did you like the original superman movie with Christopher Reeve?

Voters
37. You may not vote on this poll
  • Yes !

    33 89.19%
  • No !

    4 10.81%
Page 6 of 6 FirstFirst ... 23456
Results 76 to 84 of 84
  1. #76
    Death becomes you Osiris-Rex's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Memphis
    Posts
    6,081

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    Well, the effects were products of their time in the sense that the production crew used available tools to create the effects. But they were developing new optical effects just for that movie. It was a step forward in effects work. You could say the same thing about CITIZEN KANE or AVATAR--the director of photography and the production crew developed new techniques using the available tools of the time to do things that no movies before had done.
    One of the selling points was "You will believe a man can fly", saying the effects were so ground breaking that it actually looked like Superman was flying instead of just strapped to a board in front of a green screen.

  2. #77

    Default

    I've actually just started a rewatch of the Superman movies -- now on my Blu-Ray set.

    Watched Superman: The Movie Special Edition and Superman II theatrical and Donner cuts.

    I still enjoy the movies. I don't care if they "hold up" because that's not the point, but to me, they do still hold up. They were great for their time, and I really appreciate the innovations they came up with, which were groundbreaking and then used on other special effects movies during the 80s -- particularly the Zoptic front projection technique used for many flying sequences.

    As far as story is concerned, I don't have a problem with Superman crushing Zod's hand or Clark's returning to the diner in II. The only place where returning to the diner doesn't make sense is in the Donner cut of II because if Superman turned back time, then he was never in the diner to begin with, so why did everyone remember him?

    When I saw II with my friends back in 1981, we and the audience all groaned at the amnesia kiss, not because we thought it was "wrong," but because it undid a significant development in the mythos. As a kid, I was thrilled that the filmmakers finally took their relationship to the next level and finally had Lois discover Superman was Clark. There were so many fakeouts in the comics until that point that it was pretty amazing that this finally was not a fakeout. Then, they had to ruin it by undoing the whole thing! Still loved II, though. At the time, we all preferred it to I because it moved past the origin that we all knew and gave us the great super-fight in Times Square. Superman II was really uncharted territory as far as Superman stories were concerned at that point.

    The Donner cut is generally inferior to the Lester-theatrical version, quite frankly. I can appreciate Donner wanting to go back and finish that bit of business that he was never able to, but Lester's additions such as the opening Eiffel tower sequence, the Zoners taking over the midwest town, and the ground level Times Square stuff were all great additions.

    I actually preferred Clark tripping over the bearskin rug and falling into the fireplace as a Freudian slip way of revealing his identity to Lois in Lester's version rather than having him look like an idiot the way he does in the Donner cut when Lois shoots Clark to prove he's Superman and then the bullets turn out to be blanks. The tripping allowed Superman to be the one to choose, even unconsciously, to let Lois in on his secret. Likewise, I preferred the exciting opening at the Eiffel tower to Donner's opening at the Planet where Lois first begins to suspect the dual identity and throws herself out the window to prove it. Lois does something similar in Lester's additions to the Niagara falls sequence, but it works better for me because in Donner's version she suspects and gets talked out of it at the Planet and then suspects again at Niagara then pulls the gun. Just once was better.

    The ending fight at the fortress was also better in spite of how Lester just invented powers like the finger lasers and the giant cellophane S-shield. In Donner's version, they just talked. Maybe if Donner had filmed II fully, there would have been more, but maybe not because all of Gene Hackman's scenes were filmed by Donner during I because they didn't want to take a chance that he wouldn't be available to come back. So, maybe the Donner cut Fortress sequence was all he ever intended, and it wasn't as good, although it did (along with the Donner cut deleted scenes) address that the Zoners and Luthor were not just left at the Fortress or killed.

    One thing the Donner cut did much better was explain how Clark got his powers back after he gave them up to live as a human. By the way, in the Donner cut, Superman has sex with Lois BEFORE giving up his powers, which I prefer because we don't need to analyze too closely how he can have sex without killing her. That's always silly to me when fans do that. Anyway, in the Lester cut, Clark returns to the Fortress and screams at the heavens for help from his father, then the green crystal glows, then the next time we see Reeve, he's flying up to the Daily Planet asking Zod if he wants to "step outside" (a Lester addition and better than Donner's "Zod, don't you believe in freedom of the press?" as far as quips go). So, in the Lester cut, there's really no big explanation as to how he got his powers back after he was told by his mother that once he gave them up, it was not possible to get them back. As a teen back in 1981, I never understood this. It was just a lazy handwave on the part of the writers to me.

    In the Donner cut, he's told much the same by Jor-El about how he will be human forever, but then when Clark goes back and screams at the heavens, Marlon Brando appears in a bunch of restored footage to give Clark an "I told you so" speech about abandoning his identity and then proceeds to tell him that the Jor-El energy essence in the Fortress can be merged with Clark to restore his powers or somesuch. Then, the Jor-El projection will cease to exist. It was the fulfillment of the earlier Brando dialogue about "the son becomes the father and the father becomes the son." It was some explanation, at least, and a payoff to the father-son theme the Donner version intended.

    Overall, though Lester's theatrical cut was superior to me, but I definitely appreciated all the new footage that we finally got to see and really loved that we got to see all of Brando's performance, finally.

  3. #78
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    1,714

    Default

    Despite everything, I do ultimately like "the original Superman movie with Christopher Reeve." I do, however, dislike many, many things about it, and think that it's very overrated.

    Donner's Krypton lacks the splendor of the Krypton from the comics at the time, which is a bigger problem mostly because Donner's stark, sterile frozen wasteland version was very influential on the comics later on. It did make the frankly wonderful innovation of making the S shield into a Kryptonese symbol, which I always preferred, but otherwise I don't find much to cherish about that Krypton. Donner Krypton lead into Byrne's less icy but even more unemotional Krypton, which got to a point where Jeph Loeb just wanted the Bronze Age Krypton back, which led to the endless barrage of retcons and changes to Superman's backstory as a whole that we've endured ever since. I don't think it's any exaggeration to say that we can blame the endlessly shifting ephemera of Superman's last twenty years or so at least partially on Donner's Krypton, though obviously not all of it.

    Also I'm not all that fond of the way they treat Luthor as basically a more sophisticated Batman '66 villain. I don't like Luthor's goals, I don't like his plan, and I don't like how Gene Hackman pretends his real hair is a wig. And I hate Otis. And the time travel ending is by any estimation, a total cop-out. Not that they should have fridged Lois of course. In fact in some ways, having Superman choose to save the whole of California over her is a really great decision, but the obvious solution is to have Lois save herself. Maybe the '70s weren't ready for that yet, I don't know.

    But the biggest issue I have with Superman: the Movie is the way it treats Superman himself as an old fashioned character against the cynical modern world of the 1970s, growing up in a Norman Rockwell vision of Americana before going into exile until '78 when the bulk of the film presumably takes place. Lois is a strawman for the cynical '70s, meant to first scoff at and then fall in love with Superman's "simpler time" values. Of course, in the original Superman comics, the radio show, the early TV show, etc. Superman and Clark Kent were always shown to be a progressive character with a sense of the cynical himself, not a representative of the past. It always bothered me because of course, in reality the "simpler" 1950s when Clark is shown as growing up were filled with fear and hatred, depression, oppression, war, and all sorts of other modern horrors. Not of course that Superman is actually "conservative" in an meaningful political way, he's just old-fashioned in a way which pretends that the good old days had no and needed no politics. Of course, Superman didn't invent the image of Superman as an old-timey figure, but it embraced it in a way that few other media ever did, including the comics, and as with Krypton, I think this view of Superman, the way the movie spread it across Superman's pop culture image in such a big way, did damage to the character which still resonates to day.

    But for all that, Superman is endlessly charming, witty, and delightful. Do I think it's the best Superman movie? No. Do I think it harmed Superman for a time in the long run? Yes, I do. But for all that, it's a great pleasure to watch. As media critics often say, having problems with a piece of media doesn't mean you can't enjoy it overall, and in this case, I do.

    By contrast, Superman II has such striking problems I actually don't think I like it much at all the final analysis. The obvious ones are all the powers Kryptonians use that they shouldn't even have; I don't think I need to go into much detail on that side of things. Some people have a huge problem with Superman fighting Rocky with his powers at the end of the movie. I more have a problem with how bad he came across losing to him earlier on. Blurring the lines between Superman and Clark, creating an image that without his powers or the dual identity, Kal doesn't really know how to behave in any given situation, is a bold experiment, and I give them props for trying, and Chris Reeve, as always, does a phenomenal acting job with it. But it just makes Superman look weak as a character, as though he needs his powers to function not only as a hero but even as a person. Yuck! Even worse is the mind-wipe at the end, where Kal erases Lois' memory without her consent for no other reason than because he presumes to know what's best for her. Functionally, it's a bad cop-out which shies pitifully away from what should have been the real ending of Lois and Clark sitting down and talking out their relationship like grown-ups. Emotionally, it's monstrous. It makes Clark look irredeemably paternalistic, a horrific violation of Lois' rights as a person when her only crime was falling in love with him. Like Adventures of Superman episode 13 "The Stolen Costume," the only thing that can keep me sitting down at this franchise afterward is just to ignore Superman's crime.

    General Zod, Ursa and Non are generally very memorable and entertaining though, and quite possibly my favorite moment in the entire film sub-franchise, "General, would you care to step outside?" is from Superman II, so you know, no movie is all bad!

    Superman III is goofy, but I love the bits with Lana and Clark in Smallville. Where Superman II blurred the lines between Clark and Superman, Superman III strengthened them. It even solidified the later universal conception of Clark Kent as Superman's conscience. But yes, it's also very silly. Gus Gorman's not a great villain, neither is his boss, nor his boss' sister, nor the machine Gus builds. I do kind of love Lorelei, actually. Superman III is goofy, but it has the fewest things I dislike, and my favorite moments in the franchise are mostly from Superman III as well, at least as far as Clark Kent is concerned.

    Superman IV: the Quest for Peace is just as bad as everybody says, but I don't know if it's bad for the same reasons as everybody says. The movie is a cynical cash grab designed to repeat all the beloved memories of Superman: the Movie and Superman II. The times this works are often when the movie gets weird. Nuclear Man, Luthor escaping from prison and having a confrontation with Superman, these are all bread-and-butter and they work just fine, despite cartoonishness. The scene with Clark on the Kent farm, that's wonderful. The times when Superman un-erases and then re-erases Lois' mind, just for long enough to take her on a version of the "can you read my mind" scene with worse effects? That doesn't come across quite so well, in fact it's disastrous. That's just one jarring example of the movie's awful cash-grab qualities. Additionally, while the idea of structuring a Superman movie around a political issue is very sound, making that issue "universal nuclear disarmament"... might not be? I live in a different age from when Superman IV was made. I don't know if nuclear disarmament was a controversial issue or not, but in 2019, it doesn't seem like it would be, creating the impression that the only issue that the old-fashioned Superman could take a stand on was so uncontroversial it hardly even qualifies. Still though, it's the thought that counts. I don't have a problem with that element of the movie, ultimately. Just the ugly retread bits.

    I half like the Reeve movies. I like Superman I & Superman III, with reservations, and I dislike Superman II and Superman IV, also with reservations. None of them are unequivocally good, or unequivocally bad. There are no perfect movies, except Casablanca, but I just look at all the things I like about the Superman movies and all the things I don't, and I kind of make a judgment call on whether I "like the movie" or not, based on the issues and how much I can look past the flaws.

    EDIT: Dammit, I just now realized I'd already posted half this stuff before in a much shorter post on the front page.
    Last edited by Adekis; 04-01-2019 at 11:34 PM.
    "You know the deal, Metropolis. Treat people right or expect a visit from me."

  4. #79
    Smiles but not on command Powerboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    4,613

    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Comic-Reader Lad View Post
    When I saw II with my friends back in 1981, we and the audience all groaned at the amnesia kiss, not because we thought it was "wrong," but because it undid a significant development in the mythos. As a kid, I was thrilled that the filmmakers finally took their relationship to the next level and finally had Lois discover Superman was Clark. There were so many fakeouts in the comics until that point that it was pretty amazing that this finally was not a fakeout. Then, they had to ruin it by undoing the whole thing! Still loved II, though. At the time, we all preferred it to I because it moved past the origin that we all knew and gave us the great super-fight in Times Square. Superman II was really uncharted territory as far as Superman stories were concerned at that point.
    I remember feeling the same way at the time. This was in a time before the original version of the Squadron Supreme which explored the misuse of mind control technology and similar stories. At the time, the idea that it was a "mind rape" just was not on the radar. Like yours, my objection was that it was what we would now call the reset button, that they were throwing out everything that had been built up and that it was just going to fall into the rut the comics were in at the time with the endless recycling of the old never-ending Superman/ Lois cycle- wash/ rinse/ repeat/ repeat/ repeat. But who knows? Maybe the negative backlash helped them realize relationships in comics needed to move forward so we got the marriage of Spider-Man and later Superman. I know some people don't like either but since they are caught in a time loop that won't let them get any closer to us than 1996 at best, I'm okay with that.
    "I'm not what you think I am". Higher, further, faster.

  5. #80

    Default

    Christopher Reeve's performance as Clark/Superman is aces, as is Margot Kidder as Lois.

    The first movie is the best and most satisfying of the bunch. But having said that I feel it's dated in a lot of respects. I don't think this Superman is the best and one true version forever and forever. Nor do I think it was intended that way.

  6. #81
    Standing Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    11,149

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DrNewGod View Post
    . . . their relative innocence was an effort to reach even further back in time. The first two films, however, were really gold.
    The movie reaches back in time but it does that to subvert expectations. Something that was evident at the time, but might not seem so apparent now.

    The writing is very smart. The 1978 movie is one of those that has many lines quotable lines, like with CASABLANCA and THE GODFATHER. While there are notes of innocence and comedy these are mixed with irony and profundity.

    The very first scene does a trick that's repeated throughout the movie, but in different ways. You have the scene of the old comic book which transforms into an old style serial which takes off across outer space with the credit sequence. This sequence was ground-breaking at the time and had audiences gob-smacked. The contrast is so sharp between the black and white old stye and the all new style with the special effects and the John Williams score.

    So you have something that appears old-fashioned that suddenly becomes the most radical thing you've ever seen. This happens again and again in the movie, where old and familiar scenes and plot developments turn on their head and become brand new.

    Rather than giving audiences a Superman they expected, the movie actually pulls the rug out on the viewers and gives them something new. The phonebooth bit is just one short-hand example of that trick. You expect Clark to change in a phonebooth--but he can't, because it's modern day and those booths are old hat.

    Characters appear simple and innocent, but then they reveal depths to their character that demands they be seen in a new way. Lois Lane is a complex creation and Margot Kidder gives her a curious mix of experience and innocence. Valere Perrine appears to be your no-nonsense moll, then reveals an unexpected innocence in her scene with Superman.

    We have gotten so used to this Superman being the old and familiar one, that we no longer see the trick that Donner pulled off--making the old and familar new and different.
    WE THE NORTH

  7. #82
    (formerly "Superman") JAK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    iowa
    Posts
    1,534

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    The movie reaches back in time but it does that to subvert expectations. Something that was evident at the time, but might not seem so apparent now.

    The writing is very smart. The 1978 movie is one of those that has many lines quotable lines, like with CASABLANCA and THE GODFATHER. While there are notes of innocence and comedy these are mixed with irony and profundity.

    The very first scene does a trick that's repeated throughout the movie, but in different ways. You have the scene of the old comic book which transforms into an old style serial which takes off across outer space with the credit sequence. This sequence was ground-breaking at the time and had audiences gob-smacked. The contrast is so sharp between the black and white old stye and the all new style with the special effects and the John Williams score.

    So you have something that appears old-fashioned that suddenly becomes the most radical thing you've ever seen. This happens again and again in the movie, where old and familiar scenes and plot developments turn on their head and become brand new.

    Rather than giving audiences a Superman they expected, the movie actually pulls the rug out on the viewers and gives them something new. The phonebooth bit is just one short-hand example of that trick. You expect Clark to change in a phonebooth--but he can't, because it's modern day and those booths are old hat.

    Characters appear simple and innocent, but then they reveal depths to their character that demands they be seen in a new way. Lois Lane is a complex creation and Margot Kidder gives her a curious mix of experience and innocence. Valere Perrine appears to be your no-nonsense moll, then reveals an unexpected innocence in her scene with Superman.

    We have gotten so used to this Superman being the old and familiar one, that we no longer see the trick that Donner pulled off--making the old and familar new and different.
    Some great observations there - well done!
    Hear my new CD "Love The World Away", available on iTunes, Google Music, Spotify, Shazam, and Amazon: https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B01N5XYV..._waESybX1C0RXK via @amazon
    www.jamiekelleymusic.com
    TV interview here: https://snjtoday.com/snj-today-hotline-jamie-kelley/

  8. #83
    Fantastic Member Vampire Savior's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    383

    Default

    While I have posted in this thread, I don't think I answered the question. 1 and 2 are great, but 1 is a little goofier than I'd like. Probably due to Lex being rather goofy. 3 is one of the worst movies I think I have seen. 4 is not nearly as bad as some make it out to be. I think it's okay. Clark, Lois, and Zod were perfectly cast, and I think that has a lot to do with why the movies and their influence are so enduring.

  9. #84
    All about DC. DCStu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    UK, just outside London.
    Posts
    196

    Default

    Basically the original Superman movie is the greatest superhero film ever made. Always has been, always will be. Nothing will ever top it. My preferred version is Richard Donner's Extended Version that he put together in 2000.

    Superman II is good fun but it has a kind of goofiness that the original film didn't have and I don't know if that really works in it's favour. But it's not a bad film by any means. I prefer the Richard Donner cut to be honest because that seems to take itself more seriously.

    The less said about Superman III and IV the better.
    Collects
    80's 90's Post Crisis Era
    Eaglemoss DC Graphic Novels Collection
    New 52
    DC Rebirth

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •