Superman Returns - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Superman Returns Reviews

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May 9, 2018
Superman Return is a fun and enjoyable superhero movie
May 3, 2018
Superman Returns to Form.

Director Bryan Singer revived Superman on film after the classic Superman and Superman II movies were massive hits, while Superman III and Superman IV were abominations to the character. Superman Returns is a colossal return to form for the character on the big screen. While Singer rehashes the original story over and makes numerous callbacks, he generally maintains Superman's heroic nature and goodwill. It just feels like a hollow tribute that contributes nothing new. Strange edits that elongate scenes make the movie feel much longer than it really spans, that I am certain audiences will lose engagement after awhile. Superman Returns is a nice Superman flick, but an average film in the end.

It is worth noting that Superman Returns sadly feels quite dated. The CGI and special effects look completely fake due to the heavy use of green screen and old graphics. In the 12 years since I first saw Superman Returns, it has already aged poorly in the visual department. Odd direction and half-baked cinematography really detracts from the nice story and enjoyable performances herein. Superman Returns especially feels dated as characters repeatedly pull out flip phones, type on ancient computers, and Lois Lane even uses a fax machine at one point. It is all technology a modern younger viewer would have no connection to and older audience members will laugh at surely.

Overall, the tone and visuals of Superman Returns are the problem. We get to see Superman save lives and be a hero, but he is often just depressing and moping about throughout the majority of the movie. Singer chose a far too serious tone giving this film a familiar, yet fleeting feeling of heroism. It's too dark and shrouded in shadows and not in a good way. The shadow play and dark lighting makes you unable to see a lot of the action on screen instead of delivering a more mature atmosphere. Superman Returns leaves you more bored than inspired and wishing this movie were better.

The standout of Superman Returns is the acting as Brandon Routh gives his best Christopher Reeve impression. He feels sincere, but still too serious for the role. It definitely feels more like he is trying too hard to be like Reeve instead of his own take on Superman. That really sums up this whole film: trying too hard. Kate Bosworth is nice as Lois Lane, but she is given little to do. Kevin Spacey delivers a scary Lex Luthor that leaves you shaken, but delighted at his jokes. Spacey too, however, feels like he is doing his most admirable attempt at recreating Gene Hackman's legendary Lex Luthor. I absolutely adore Parker Posey as the sweetly sincere and misguided Kitty Kowalski character. I am delighted to see Eva Marie Saint appear as Superman's mother for a scene or two as she is an excellent actress. The entire ensemble plays their parts well enough. In all, Superman Returns can claim a solid cast that suits a Superman movie's likeness.

Finally, I must mention the score composed by John Williams is a cute touch. Singer knew he could pull at your heart strings just by playing Williams' classic score once more. Sure enough, it works wonders as dreary scenes are lightened by the joyous sounds of Williams' symphony. Superman Returns' most heroic moments are elevated to new heights thanks to Williams and his inspiring score. The music is a nice choice to endear you to this film that future Superman films like Man of Steel tragically lack.

In short, Superman Returns gives new life to Superman after two brilliant films and two awful sequels. This movie may be hated to this day, but it remains entertaining for a watch. At the very least, I can say that Superman Returns respects the sanctity of the source material and tries to awe, but merely amuses.
May 1, 2018
Boring. A Superman film for those who cannot let go of the nostalgia of the 4 decades old Donner Superman films.
It fails to update the character for a new generation in any meaningful way.
With advancement in vfx you have to do more than simply making us believe a man can fly - you have to make us believe a man can be truly super. Super, this film is not.
April 17, 2018
Though, i like the original superman the most, this movie is pretty good itself. mainly because Bryan Singer made it instead of Wolverine 3. Brandon Routh made a great superman, and Kevin spacey was equally great lex luthor. The digital effects on this movie are amazing, almost as stunning as the original was in its day.
March 24, 2018
A boring plot and a bad performance by Brandon Routh, "Superman Returns" offers nothing to be desired.
March 7, 2018
Neither good enough to be great nor bad enough to suck, Superman Returns is a perfectly average Superman flick. Brandon Routh is good in the titular role, but he's nothing special. Kevin Spacey is pretty good as Lex Luthor as well. There's not enough action, but what action there is is great. The special effects are surprisingly great, and Bryan Singer gives the film an interesting new visual style. Overall, Superman Returns isn't for everyone, but it's definitely good.
February 23, 2018
The story wasn't the strongest but I was thoroughly entertained and though it was a good film
February 4, 2018
The one thing that really irritates me about Superman Returns is that it's rated higher than Man of Steel by critics- which is atrocious. Superman Returns ris an ok movie at best, whereas Man of Steel is a strong movie. What hurts Superman Returns is it tries to much to be Superman The Movie from 1978. And it's not. The opening sequence was maybe the best of any Superman movie yet which got me really excited, but it was all downhill from there. The first hour is fine- I like the way they brought Superman back and he was introduced back into the lives of Metropolis. But afterwards it sucked. The last hour was confusing, and sloppy. The casting was horrendous. Routh is the worst Superman yet- he just doesn't look the part and he tries too hard to be Reeves when he's Clark Kent. Lois Lane was horrible, and Jimmy Olson was annoying. The only saving grace of the cast was Kevin Spacey. He wasn't great or anything, but at least he tried to bring something new to the role of Lex Luthor, unlike with what the rest of the movie was trying to do. Overall, it's not a bad movie, but it tries too hard to be the original which makes it a bore, especially by the end.
½ January 18, 2018
It was fine. Nothing special. The airplane catch was a nice scene. Surprised James Marsden didn't want a bigger part in X-Men: The Last Stand for this.
½ January 16, 2018
Bryan Singer's Superman Returns is a much better film than many people give it credit for, it certainly is superior to the disaster visited upon the character by Zach Snyder and Company. Brandon Ruth brings a measured Superman to the screen but one that is still reminiscent of what audiences were accustomed to in the original series, while not as charismatic as Reeves, his touch of humanity resonates however with me, I like his portrayal, forgiving, caring, and gentle. What is wrong with that? Certainly better than more modern portrayals. . Kevin Spacy is an excellent Luther. There isn't a great deal of chemistry between Routh and Bosworth and she is a fair casting for Lane. CGI effects are pretty bad in places. Overall, I think it works as an action film with a very interesting take and twist at the end. It would have been nice to see the sequel and to see where the story would have progressed to. There are a few great scenes including the saving of the airplane and the catching of the Daily Planet sphere. It is a shame that the series did not continue and there was really no reason not to, as Routh established a good character and the movie did well at the box office, unfortunately, we will never know, but this movie works as a great addition to the superman movie world.
½ January 4, 2018
I think people should give a chance to this movie it wasn't as bad as people are saying. Yes is a bit too long because the ending part I just wanted the movie to be over. I think Brandon Routh played the role very descent, the action was solid. In my opinion it wasn't as bad, I liked this Superman movie. For that being said, for this being a solid film and a solid Superman movie, and for Kevin Spacey being a solid Lex Luther, I give " Superman Returns" B-.
January 2, 2018
The whole point of Superman is that he can do the right thing partly because of his wholesome upbringing, but also because he is powerful enough to BE the ultimate Boy Scout. This move loses sight of that. It turns Superman into a peeping tom deadbeat dad, among other failures. And starts turning the corner into refusing to paint him as a product of wholesome (if simplistic) middle-American values. Overall, a failed attempt to re-write a classic archetype.
½ December 28, 2017
Superman Returns does acknowledge the quintessential story of Superman and the action sequences (although limited) are undeniably perplexing. The run time, though, is a particular issue considering half of the storyline is unnecessary.
December 3, 2017
They did it all wrong.
November 25, 2017
Personally for me, my favourtite Superman movie. Better than the Man of Steel. It has a good storyline, not patchy and certainly has it best moment.
November 25, 2017
Although a little too long, this is a fun, thoughtful picture. I wish the writers' strike of 2007 had not derailed the planned sequel.
November 24, 2017
With a mostly good cast, solid acting, and a good mix of campy, and dark, this reboot works, despite the arguably silly plot
November 21, 2017
Could have been so much better, Routh really looked the part but this movie is a snore fest with very little action.
½ November 8, 2017
Looks good with a bit of a CG issue and the obvious plot twist can't exist in the Superman universe. It's a main rule.
October 31, 2017
How is it possible that folks thought this movie was anything but great? It revitalizes the old Superman via finding a guy who sounds and looks very much like Christopher Reeves, then tells a tale that fits in the structure of the those aforementioned movies/world.
This movie is epic and has a huge cast [which delivers], has superb writing with both heart and unbelievable Superman action, has forbidden love, and infinitely more comic book fun!
If you don't like the movie you simply don't like the 50s style Superman an that is you baggage not mine. The bizarrely fantastic strikes again and the alien of our democratic-republic honesty dreams is back in all its glory.

Too bad the new, "real", Man of Steel had to take this man's place in the "Justice League/Bat V Super", which many of us remember from the 80s, and wonder out loud..."WTF WB is thinking?"
I guess all great things must pass in time: even truth, justice, and the American way.
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