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Truth, Justice & Giant Spiders
February 10, 2010 9:14 AM   Subscribe

With the recent news that Christopher Nolan will be "godfathering" the next Superman film into production for Warner Bros., one can only hope that his project fares better than previous attempts. Previously.
posted by Toby Dammit X (81 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
To star Edward Norton, perhaps.
posted by Joe Beese at 9:21 AM on February 10, 2010


So he's official D.C. Comics' go-to guy now? Works for me, I like his adaptations better than Marvel's offerings of late.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 9:22 AM on February 10, 2010


Christopher Nolan was meant for so much more...
posted by setanor at 9:22 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


You know, I'm cool with giant spiders so long as Superman actually punches something from time to time. Or does anything that is not moping, basically.
posted by Artw at 9:25 AM on February 10, 2010


Or does anything that is not moping, basically.

With the possible exception of flying around the world backwards to turn back time.
posted by DU at 9:27 AM on February 10, 2010 [4 favorites]


I'd quite like to see a Superman film set in the 1930s, really. The present day is rubbish.
posted by dng at 9:28 AM on February 10, 2010 [14 favorites]


Nolan? So they're going more dreary than Superman Returns? Don't get me wrong, that works fine for Batman, but I have to wonder if the studio knows what property they have.

Then again, Nolan's a smart guy. Let's hope he knows and doesn't push this in a "gritty" direction.

On preview: a 1930s version would be great.
posted by brundlefly at 9:30 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


dng: "I'd quite like to see a Superman film set in the 1930s, really. The present day is rubbish."

Ahh, I was going to say that. I'd love to see an earlier, less powerful Superman based on the early comics and Fleischer cartoons.
posted by octothorpe at 9:33 AM on February 10, 2010 [4 favorites]


How about a superhero movie where every single frame doesn't look like an HDR photograph and the actors don't all look like they are standing in front of a green screen with a video game projected on to it. Come on. I hope Nolan has decent taste in DP's.
posted by JBennett at 9:34 AM on February 10, 2010 [6 favorites]


Live action version of the DC:AU stuff would do me, TBH. Though none of the straight to DVD movies have been a patch on the Superman or JLA cartoons.
posted by Artw at 9:35 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


With the possible exception of flying around the world backwards to turn back time.

That movie was perfect, dammit!
posted by Artw at 9:37 AM on February 10, 2010


I've always wondered what Superman would look and sound like on steroids.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:37 AM on February 10, 2010


Broody, boring hero + enraged, colorful villains = successful DC comic book movie. Only one director in the world gets this formula?
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 9:38 AM on February 10, 2010


"Only one director in the world gets this formula?"

Well, two, but Tim Burton already had his shot at Superman.
posted by Toby Dammit X at 9:40 AM on February 10, 2010


Jimmy Olsen wrote himself endless notes. But he'd get mixed up. I've got a more graceful solution to the red kryptonite problem. I'm disciplined and organized. I use habit and routine to make my life possible. Jimmy had no drive. No reason to make it work.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:43 AM on February 10, 2010 [8 favorites]


With the possible exception of flying around the world backwards to turn back time.


I think it was implied that he wasn't literally reversing Earth's axial rotation, but was exceeding the speed of light to create some kind of quantum time warp or something. They should've have laid out the sequence better to prevent that kind of confusion.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:44 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


That is an interpretation that has never occurred to me. I'll have to rewatch it with that in mind.
posted by brundlefly at 9:46 AM on February 10, 2010


The Silver Age comics pretty clearly laid out that Supes can't alter anything in the past when he time travels. It's not frickin' Back to the Future rules!
posted by shakespeherian at 9:46 AM on February 10, 2010


That movie was perfect, dammit!

You mean mov-IES ... The director's cut of Superman II has him doing the exact same thing.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 9:47 AM on February 10, 2010


I'd quite like to see a Superman film set in the 1930s, really. The present day is rubbish.

You're on to something, here, I think. There was a column in Amazing Heroes (I think) not too long after the John Byrne Superman reboot that took a pretty close look at the differences between the original image (original-ish, there has been a lot of tinkering with the character) -- Superman/Clark Kent as an immigrant (who looked longingly back at the society he could never rejoin) and as a beat reporter (definitely a working-class guy) who was supposed to be an archetypal American changing into a character who saw himself as an American first (he pretty much rejected Krypton in those early Byrne issues) and who worked as either a major paper columnist or (my memory is foggy here) or possibly some kind of TV pundit (definitely not workining-class). I think I preferred the "exceptional everyman" idea better.
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:47 AM on February 10, 2010


The Silver Age comics pretty clearly laid out that Supes can't alter anything in the past when he time travels. It's not frickin' Back to the Future rules!

Is there anything "canon" about Superman other than he wears tights, is from Krypton, and is allergic to fragments of his destroyed planet? It seems that arbitrary caprice is the only rule otherwise.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:49 AM on February 10, 2010


Or does anything that is not moping, basically.

When you have a superhero whose abilities are as broken as Superman, you're pretty much left with a) moping or b) coming up with yet another kryptonite delivery mechanism as your only options to make it interesting. Unfortunately, we'll get both. Again.
posted by norm at 9:50 AM on February 10, 2010


Burhanistan: "exceeding the speed of light to create some kind of quantum time warp or something"

I could have sworn it was supposed to be some horseshit about crossing the international date line.
posted by idiopath at 9:50 AM on February 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'd also like to see them bring back the "cross dressing at the drop of a hat" Jimmy Olsen from the 60s.

Also, maybe they could make a movie of that story where red kryptonite turned Superman into a baby and the the only way to change him back was to have Lois Lane spank him and make him cry.

The early 60s were a magical time for Superman....
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:51 AM on February 10, 2010 [4 favorites]


Well, I didn't know this:

Attorney Marc Toberoff, who keeps suing Warner Bros on behalf of creative rightsholders, warns that, in 2013, the Jerome Siegel heirs along with the estate of co-creator Joe Shuster will own the entire original copyright to Superman -- "and neither DC Comics nor Warner Bros will be able to exploit any new Superman works without a license from the Siegels and Shusters".

I don't know if the above has to do with copyright law or if that is an agreement between the heirs and Warner Brothers.
posted by marxchivist at 9:57 AM on February 10, 2010


Worse, it left diehard fans only "meh" about a sequel starring Routh.

That's too bad, because I don't think the problem was Routh. It wasn't Spacey or Posey either (because they can do no wrong in my eyes). I think the problem was that Bosworth had no screen chemistry with anyone involved and it left people wondering why they should care. (Seriously, I cared more about Superman's interactions with Posey's character than with Lane. That's a problem.)

Nolan will be a positive influence on the franchise though, and possibly bring us one step closer to the much needed film version of Batman vs Superman, where we see the Bat teach that red caped do-gooder a lesson in ass kicking.
posted by quin at 9:59 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm pretty sure any time travel by Supes was incidental. It has been established that Superman is a dick. He was CLEARLY so angry about his girlfriend dying that he decided to spin the earth backwards in order to destroy everyone on it via the massive environmental damage this would cause (earth quakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, etc). He accidentally turned back time and then pretended it was his idea all along. Then he made Jimmy Olsen marry a monkey.
posted by haveanicesummer at 10:07 AM on February 10, 2010 [10 favorites]


Ahh, I was going to say that. I'd love to see an earlier, less powerful Superman based on the early comics and Fleischer cartoons.

Has anyone optioned The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay yet, btw?
posted by acb at 10:08 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


It has been established that Superman is a dick.

That much we can all agree on.

posted by Burhanistan at 10:09 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


Am I the only one who actually liked "Superman Returns"? Wait, don't answer that. :)

In all seriousness, I thought "Returns" had some interesting premises to it:

  • Does the world really need Superman?

  • How would Superman react if he learned that Krypton may have survived in some form or another?

  • How would Lois move on with her life if Superman disappeared one day?

  • Does Clark still feel any attachment to his life in Smallville?

  • Does Superman still consider himself an immigrant or has he finally made peace that he is a citizen of Earth?



    Of course, there were other bits of terribleness thrown in, too:

    -- The whole "Lois Lane is a mommy" subplot.

    -- Superman brought to a hospital.

    But I'd rather not dwell on the negative bits. My point is that "Superman Returns" wasn't the devil spawn that fanboys/girls make it out to be.

  • posted by zooropa at 10:09 AM on February 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


    Nolan will be a positive influence on the franchise though, and possibly bring us one step closer to the much needed film version of Batman vs Superman, where we see the Bat teach that red caped do-gooder a lesson in ass kicking.

    I would especially love it if Clark were taking orders directly from Reagan a la Dark Knight Returns.
    posted by shakespeherian at 10:09 AM on February 10, 2010


    That's too bad, because I don't think the problem was Routh. It wasn't Spacey or Posey either (because they can do no wrong in my eyes). I think the problem was that Bosworth had no screen chemistry with anyone involved and it left people wondering why they should care. (Seriously, I cared more about Superman's interactions with Posey's character than with Lane. That's a problem.)
    posted by quin


    I think the problems with Superman Returns were not Bosworth-related (she wasn't a Katie Holmes in Batman Begins level drag on the proceedings). The problem for me was the script. The film was essentially tedious, and clung to closely to the Donner Superman films (I know for some this is a good thing, for me quite the opposite). It should have been more Superman Begins and less Superman Returns (not that I want an origin story, just nothing that involves Brando phoning it in... IN OUTTAKES!)
    posted by haveanicesummer at 10:12 AM on February 10, 2010


    But I'd rather not dwell on the negative bits. My point is that "Superman Returns" wasn't the devil spawn that fanboys/girls make it out to be.
    posted by zooropa


    Just for the record, I don't even LIKE Superman, and I didn't like the film. I just WANT to like a Superman movie, is all. So it's not all fanboys/girls who thought it was kind of... dumb.
    posted by haveanicesummer at 10:15 AM on February 10, 2010


    acb: "Has anyone optioned The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay yet, btw?"

    Yeah, but it's kinda been in development hell.
    posted by brundlefly at 10:15 AM on February 10, 2010


    Also Bryan Singer is to be blamed because he didn't make an awesome movie while leaving Brett Ratner to take the already shaky X-Men series into fullblown idiocy.
    posted by haveanicesummer at 10:18 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    I thought the main problem with Superman Returns was that it was an 80 minute film dragged out over 2 and a half hours
    posted by dng at 10:19 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    I think it was implied that he wasn't literally reversing Earth's axial rotation, but was exceeding the speed of light to create some kind of quantum time warp or something. They should've have laid out the sequence better to prevent that kind of confusion.

    Oh, come on Burhanistan!

    The people responsible for that sequence either thought that Time Works That Way, or assumed that the audience thought so. Unforgiveable.

    -
    posted by General Tonic at 10:23 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    The problem with Superman Returns wasn't Superman. It was the same problem that all superhero stories have.

    It's the villain. The villain, the villain, the villain. The villain always has to be the most interesting character. A superhero story lives and dies based on its villain, and to a lesser extent, it's supporting characters' interaction with the villain.

    * The X-Men movies succeeded because of Ian McKellan, Rebecca Romaijn-Stamos and Brian Cox.
    * Wolverine failed because they didn't use Liev Schreiber very well at all, and they made a unfocused mess of all the other characters.
    * Gene Hackman and Terence Stamp stole the original Superman movies.
    * Superman Returns asked Kevin Spacey to do a Gene Hackman impression. DUDE.
    * Batman Begins did some interesting things with Cillian Murphy and Liam Neesom, sure ...
    * ... but we all saw how much better this franchise was with Heath Ledger.

    I bet you could make a great Superman movie without a single line of actual Superman dialogue. Just Clark Kent and the supporting cast. And a great fucking villain.

    If I'm Chris Nolan, I spend 100 percent of my "godfather" time working on the villain and casting that role.
    posted by Cool Papa Bell at 10:28 AM on February 10, 2010 [11 favorites]


    I don't know if the above has to do with copyright law or if that is an agreement between the heirs and Warner Brothers.

    Interesting. A few weeks ago I finished the book Men of Tomorrow, by Gerard Jones. It covers the beginnings of the comics industry, but has at its core the tale (saga, really) of how the creators conceived of Superman and then lost control over the character — which led to decades of anguish and penury for Siegel and Shuster, with redemption only near the end via copyright law. At one point Siegel was apparently a janitor in Los Angeles, and Shuster became a deliveryman in NYC.

    I'm not a fan of copyrights held in perpetuity, but given this extended drama, I think the heirs are due a few years of revenue as sole copyright holders.

    Anyone know if DC's parent company still holds the international copyright? That might complicate future Man of Steel developments, and force an agreement.
    posted by Jubal Kessler at 10:29 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    Men of Tomorrow and Kavalier and Clay make a great combined read for anyone interested in the early days of comics. Both thoroughly recommended.
    posted by Artw at 10:32 AM on February 10, 2010


    I want to see Andy Serkis play an awkward, inhuman, dickish and completely alien Superman with a bad approximation of an American accent. It's an origin story set in 1944 amidst the ongoing Second World War. Superman must balance the notions of "truth, justice, and the American way" against the call to be an international hero to all. His dilemmas include daring (and morally ambiguous) rescues of Nazi soldiers trapped in perilous situations, and his secret involvement in (and eventual resistance to) the Manhattan Project. Will Superman partner exclusively with the Allies or align with the entire human race?

    Driving Superman to focus on the bigger picture is another disguised alien rising through the political ranks: it's Brainiac, an evil android from the planet Colu (played charmingly by Russell Crowe) out to enslave the planet through mind control, propaganda, and, in the final act, a menacing new shrink ray device. Superman and Brainiac take turns thwarting each other's plans over several short romps through time that irreparably damage the course of human history. Each jump leads to a more dystopian timeline with a more devastating war in progress. Superman eventually realizes that the only way to save humanity is to prevent himself from ever arriving on Earth, so he travels back in time to divert the flight plan of his infant self.

    Then he flies straight to Colu to pre-empt the creation of Brainiac, where he must sacrifice himself in a factory heavily stocked with Kryptonite greebles. Cut to Earth, proceeding with WWII as we know it, unaffected by heroes or villains from other worlds and getting by just fine, thankyouverymuch. Hopeful music swells. Then, in the final shot, cut to Mars, where baby Superman has crashed and is growing up, leaving the door open for a very strange sequel (starring Jon Hamm as hard-boiled reporter Jimmy James Olsen and Anne Hathaway as classy rookie journalist Lois Lane, both of whom were conspicuously absent for the first film).
    posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 10:33 AM on February 10, 2010 [9 favorites]


    Dear Movie Studios,
    We know you don't know how to make a decent Superman story that doesn't suck. Just pretend you're adapting a novel and use an existing story and make a movie version of it. Don't try to write something new, because frankly YOU SUCK AT IT. Any of the Superman Elseworlds stories would be fine with me... Or ANY comic book storyline. Personally I prefer Man of Steel.
    Sincerely,
    blue_beetle
    posted by blue_beetle at 10:38 AM on February 10, 2010


    As long as he brings back Gene Hackman as Lex Luthor, I'll be happy.
    posted by The World Famous at 10:40 AM on February 10, 2010


    Wow, I'm kind of amazed that the studio can't find someone else to tackle Superman. They've made no bones about their assumption that "grim and gritty" = "better movie" but this shows an astounding lack of vision. "Hey, guys, let's take this fella who's done pretty well with a different superhero franchise, and give him this one too! It worked with Singer, right? Oh ..." At this rate, if Nolan falls through, I'm sure they'll go right to Raimi.

    What superhero movies *need* if they're ever going to be more than an incestuous little circle of formulaic action movies, swapping directors and writers back and forth like a bunch of seventh graders playing spin the bottle, are inspired picks of talented people to helm them.

    Branagh's Thor and Edgar Wright's Antman are both excellent examples of how the studios should be going about this, whatever the eventual outcome (in quality or box-office) may be.
    posted by Amanojaku at 10:42 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    For a modern and interesting take on the character that isn't all grim and gritty, doesn't shy away from superman being superman (and yet at the same time doesn't let power-inflation prevent it form telling stories) and which is just flat out awesome Grant Morrison's All Star Superman is hard to beat... they should just adapt that.

    However my money is on origin story + bit of a tussle with some bank robbers and/or a not very interesting version of Lex Luthor.
    posted by Artw at 10:48 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    i was just going to say the same thing.
    posted by saulgoodman at 10:51 AM on February 10, 2010


    Morrison on Superman.

    I particularly like his take on Luthor: I saw Superman/Luthor as a classic pair of opposites, complementing one another like the two sides of a coin or an argument. Lex is, of course, convinced that if there had been no Superman to stand in his way, he’d be the beloved leader of a scientific utopian culture. I don’t agree and think the flaws in Luthor’s character would have always held him back. If he didn’t have Superman to blame all his failures on, it would be someone else’s fault. His decision to become Superman’s archenemy is a way of inflating his own sense of importance to cosmic proportions.
    posted by Artw at 10:55 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    My juvenile obligatory Batman vs Superman animated gif featuring offensive humor for the whole family.

    And Kevin Smith talks about his involvement on Superman Lives [YT] for those unfamiliar with the spider...
    posted by cavalier at 10:57 AM on February 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


    The Winsome Parker Lewis - That sounds like an absolutely fantastic movie! I'm entirely in favor of films taking an entirely different direction than their source material. Think of how much better a world we would live in if Jodorowsky's Dune had actually come to fruition.
    posted by Jawn at 10:57 AM on February 10, 2010


    Apologies; realizing now that Smith's bit is linked in the background MeFi post.
    posted by cavalier at 10:59 AM on February 10, 2010


    Jawn: "That sounds like an absolutely fantastic movie! I'm entirely in favor of films taking an entirely different direction than their source material."

    I totally agree. I'm not a huge fan, but I'll always wonder what Darren Aronofsky's Batman would have been like:
    If you think that Christopher Nolan's take on Batman is 'realistic,' Darren Aronofsky's probably would have made you shit your pants. Aronofsky worked with Frank Miller on a script that adapted the comic book story Batman: Year One into a grim, violent R-rated feature.

    The Batman franchise was up in the air after the disastrous Batman & Robin. Warner Bros began looking for a new direction; for a little while they considered adapting the cartoon Batman Beyond as a live-action movie, and they even entertained bringing Joel Schumacher back for Batman 5. But they also talked extensively with Darren Aronofsky, who had well-cemented his reputation as an edgy auteur. They went back and forth with him, and even brought in the Wachowski Bros to pitch a concept to Aronofsky.

    Aronofsky wasn't interested in making anything that resembled a Batman film that had come before. He also wasn't interested in hewing close to Miller's original comics. This film saw Bruce Wayne wandering the streets after the murder of his parents; he's taken in by an auto mechanic named Big Al (Aronofsky's version of Alfred). Bruce grows up a borderline psychotic who begins taking violent vengeance on street thugs. He turns an abandoned subway station below Big Al's auto shop into his version of the Batcave. He puts a bus engine in a black Lincoln Continental as his version of the Batmobile. Over the course of the story he assembles the elements of the costume and persona of Batman (or The Bat-Man, as he's called).

    posted by brundlefly at 11:10 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    That would be a really awesome elseworlds batman.
    posted by Artw at 11:12 AM on February 10, 2010


    Here's the question that we're all tip-toeing around:

    Does Superman even have a place in today's world?

    Think about it. As others mentioned already, Superman was a character created firmly of his time (the 1930's). He was an immigrant (from another world), he was blue-collar (a mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper was blue-collar back then), and he was unambigously for "truth, justice, and the American way."

    Today, our culture doesn't want black or white. It wants grit and grime in its infinite shades of gray. Superman is perfect, and we really don't seem to want perfect.
    posted by zooropa at 11:31 AM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    zooropa - To quote the Morrison WIRED interview:

    Wired.com: All-Star Superman exploded the narrative possibilities of the Man of Steel.

    Grant Morrison: I tried to be true to the concept of Superman as I understood it. It seemed fairly significant that the more threatening the world has been made to feel, the more this concept of the superhero has bled from the margins into mainstream consciousness, onto screens and T-shirts and into political speeches. That seemed worth exploring via the original superhero, Superman. He seemed the perfect subject for what became an attempt to make a mainstream, adult superhero comic that didn’t rely on ultraviolence, or superheroes swearing and getting their dicks out.

    Wired.com: He seems to be one of the pure heroes left standing in the 21st century.

    Morrison: We’ve deconstructed all our icons. We know politicians are lying assholes, we know soap stars are coke freaks, handsome actors are tranny weirdos and gorgeous supermodels are bulimic, neurotic wretches. We know our favorite comedians will turn out to be alcoholic perverts or suicidal depressives. Our reality shows have held up a scalding mirror to our yapping baboon faces and cheesy, obvious obsessions, our trashy, gossipy love of trivia and dirt.

    We know we’ve fucked up the atmosphere and doomed the lovely polar bears and we can’t even summon up the energy to feel guilty anymore. Let the pedophiles have the kids. There’s nowhere left to turn and no one left to blame except, paradoxically, those slightly medieval guys without the industrial base. What’s left to believe in? The only truly moral, truly goodhearted man left is a made-up comic book character! The only secular role models for a progressive, responsible, scientific-rational Enlightenment culture are … Kal-El of Krypton, aka Superman and his multicolored descendants!

    So we chose not to deconstruct the superhero but to take him at face value, as a fiction that was trying to tell us something wonderful about ourselves. Somewhere, in our darkest night, we made up the story of a man who will never let us down and that seemed worth investigating.

    posted by Artw at 11:34 AM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    I'd quite like to see a Superman film set in the 1930s, really. The present day is rubbish.

    This is really the best option, I think.
    What we need is something with this premise, with someone like David Fincher directing and the set and costume team from "Mad Men".
    posted by kaiseki at 11:54 AM on February 10, 2010


    Today, our culture doesn't want black or white. It wants grit and grime in its infinite shades of gray. Superman is perfect, and we really don't seem to want perfect.
    I'm hardly qualified to speak for our culture in it's entirety (but then neither are you!) but I for one am sick of mindless grit and grime. Grit and grime do not equal mature, they do not equal grown up, they do not equal realism, or art, or any number of other things. They equal pessimism, which is all well and good but it's nice to have some optimism to balance it out for a change.

    So yes, Superman and any number of other silly, outlandish Golden/Silver age ideas very much have a place in today's world. It's a big world and there's aplace for anything, well, nearly anything.
    posted by davros42 at 11:56 AM on February 10, 2010


    In comicbook terms grim and gritty mainly indicates a state of ingrown teenagerhood that's frankly a bit crap.
    posted by Artw at 11:58 AM on February 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


    For a truly non-gritty, optimistic tale, screw the modern era. How about Superman battling Lex de' Medici in the Italian Renaissance?
    posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 12:07 PM on February 10, 2010


    Does Superman even have a place in today's world?

    (rambling, disconnected thoughts follow)

    I think the point of any Supes movie should be to play up the disconnect between his ideals and the realities of the world he lives in. He's raised by midwestern farmers; he sees the world through rose-colored glasses. He believes in self-sacrifice and truth, justice, all that stuff. When he comes to New York City Metropolis, this should be a fucking huge shock for him. He sees rapists, muggers, prostitutes, homeless, junkies... this is shit that should horrify him. He can't even conceive of it; it goes against everything he thought America was about.

    But he's also naive. He thinks the govt. wants to do right by people. He thinks corporations have people's best interests in mind. I'm thinking of Superman in DKR -- even though Miller is well-known for his antiipathy for Supes, that potrayal is probably the most humane and interesting portrayal of the Kryptonian I've ever read. He gets duped into thinking that by serving the powers that run the country, he'll be making the world a better place. They know how to manipulate him, they know what he'll believe, so they convince him that if he just squashes this rebellion here, secures that oilfield there, he will save people. But, when he figures out that he's been lied to, all hell breaks loose. I'm thinking Supreme Power or Cla$$War here. What do you do when a superbeing realizes that he's been lied to and manipulated? Duck and cover.

    I'd also be up for an adaptation of Millar's Superman: Red Son, wherein Kal-El lands in the Soviet Union rather than the US.

    Or, have him fight some giant fucking robots from outer space and shit. That would be cool.
    posted by Saxon Kane at 12:17 PM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    Shitty film though it might have been, I thought Matrix:Revolutions actually had a pretty awesome Superman fight at the end.
    posted by Artw at 12:24 PM on February 10, 2010


    Then again, Nolan's a smart guy. Let's hope he knows and doesn't push this in a "gritty" direction.

    Yeah, Supes isn't really made for "gritty". Supes is made for colourful ZAM-POW-WALLA-WALLA and general bellychuckles.
    posted by turgid dahlia at 12:46 PM on February 10, 2010



    I'd quite like to see a Superman film set in the 1930s, really. The present day is rubbish.


    They could do worse than to adapt this.

    The director's cut of Superman II has him doing the exact same thing


    To be fair to Donner, the plan was to end the first movie with Supes throwing one Luthor's missiles into space, where ripples from the explosion free the Phantom Zone villains. The time-travel was only supposed to happen at the end of the second movie, resetting things so that Zod and company were still safely locked away, and Clark never revealed his secret to Lois.

    Having shared that, I gotta say that while I loves me the Donner cut, I'm still not such a fan of that ending. I like the idea of Superman's status quo undergoing such a radical change, and that would have made for a kickass third movie.

    Instead of, y'know, Richard Pryor and his pinball computer.
    posted by mgrichmond at 12:55 PM on February 10, 2010


    I never really followed the Superman comics so I don't know if this was ever done, but rather than going to the 1930s, I'd like to see a movie about him set in 2110, and either have it be a far flung future where technology has allowed the average person to have many of the same powers as him, or a post apocalyptic hellscape where he was still all-powerful, but he wasn't fighting crime or whatever, but trying to deal with things like mass starvation and radiation poisoning.
    posted by quin at 12:57 PM on February 10, 2010


    I thought Superman Returns got too much crap. Yes it's mopey, yes the entire Lois subplot sucked, yes it looses steam about 45 min in, but it does have at least one Superman Being Amazing! scene and Kevin Spacey's Lex was just on the right camp notes.

    Superman gets worse the gritter he gets. He's SUPERMAN! The big blue boy scout! Here's what he does, he saves the girl, he punches bad guys. I love the idea of it being set in the 30s - everything should have Little nemo colors and it's always the nicest day of the year.

    Basically, in order for me to like a Superman movie, someone has to be able say "Oh Superman! You've saved my life again!" completely straight.
    posted by The Whelk at 1:35 PM on February 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


    Clark Kent totally has to mention being scooped by Lois for an interview with visiting playboy Bruce Wayne cause any hint that the DC universe is a cohesive whole makes me happy in my lizard brain no matter how stupid it becomes if you think about it too hard.
    posted by The Whelk at 1:36 PM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    I thought Superman Returns got too much crap.

    Its biggest problem, in my opinion, was that Superman seemed sort of embarassed about being dressed in a Superman costume for some reason. Whereas Batman, not actually having any super powers and having created his own super suit, is fully justified in having a slight air of being stoked about how awesome his whole rig is, Superman just is Superman, and there shouldn't be any hint of introspection as far as whether he thinks his rig is cool or not. Sure, he can have existential crises, question the true nature of his calling, and whatnot. But self-consciousness about being a superhero in a superhero suit doesn't work for Superman. If anything, he should be relieved to be out of that stupid Clark Kent costume, rather than silently longing for human normalcy or some crap like that.
    posted by The World Famous at 1:50 PM on February 10, 2010


    Less mope-y more punch-y!

    And yeah, Brandon Roth or whatever couldn't act his way outta a set of tights. That's what you get when you do your casting decisions in a hot tub.

    (and yes, thanks for giving X-Men 3 to Ratner. Sheesh. Way to take all the fun out of the series. "That's your answer to everything, just flow flaming cars at the problem!")
    posted by The Whelk at 1:54 PM on February 10, 2010


    throw*

    flow works too.
    posted by The Whelk at 1:54 PM on February 10, 2010


    (thanks to the new Related Post feature a I saw the title "They're imaginary stories ...aren't they all?" and thought "I bet ArtW posted that" and Lo it was thus.)
    posted by The Whelk at 1:55 PM on February 10, 2010


    Er... 4 out of 5 related posts are mine...

    (Maybe I should slow down a bit)
    posted by Artw at 2:47 PM on February 10, 2010


    DON'T STOP THE MUSIC!
    posted by The Whelk at 4:40 PM on February 10, 2010


    I just really, really like Superman
    posted by Artw at 4:41 PM on February 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


    Everyone does! He's Superman. The only people who don't like him are BAD GUYS.
    posted by The Whelk at 4:43 PM on February 10, 2010


    SUPERMAN THE MUSICAL
    posted by The Whelk at 4:43 PM on February 10, 2010



    SUPERMAN THE MUSICAL

    Oh, now see, up to now I was able to use the excuse that, "no video of the musical has turned up on the internet." Now I'm gonna have to watch it, and I'm gonna hate it almost as much as I hate Smallville. Why would you do that to me?
    posted by mgrichmond at 4:56 PM on February 10, 2010


    IT HAS LESLIE ANN WARREN IN IT THAT'S WHY.
    posted by The Whelk at 4:57 PM on February 10, 2010


    For ArtW and others, this is the playlist I had during a Superman tribute party. The whole idea was having the 1930s-40s Superman and cast in various vignettes where the music and scenery would be the er, commentary -done in conjunction with Yoe's Book "secret Identity" about the fetish drawing past of the Superman creators- eventually ends up with clothes off but I did like out set of zip-o-tone and 40s furnishings.


    Unforgettable

    Love Theme From Superman
    Let's Misbehave
    You're My Thrill
    It's a Bird! It's a Plane! Overture
    Spiderman Theme
    Teach Me Tiger
    Do You Want To Know A Secret?
    That's really super, Super Girl
    Whip It
    Batman Theme
    Batman And Robin Swing
    Superman Lover
    Theme To Superman: The Movie
    I Put A Spell On You

    Joker Is Wild
    Venus In Furs
    O Superman
    Angel
    Loving The Alien
    posted by The Whelk at 5:21 PM on February 10, 2010


    Oh! and the exit music was Cartoon Heroes
    posted by The Whelk at 5:27 PM on February 10, 2010


    With the possible exception of flying around the world backwards to turn back time.

    That movie was perfect, dammit!


    Artw - Throughout your posting history I have learned to respect and admire your pop culture knowledge and sensibilities, but I have to admit, even though I was seven, and even though walking out of that movie theater in the 70s was the very first time in my life I had ever seen snow falling from the sky, I still realised that ending sucked donkey balls.
    posted by Sparx at 6:13 PM on February 10, 2010


    Can I just say that Anne Hathaway as Lois Lane is about as close to perfect as casting is allowed to get. I get squishy just thinking about it.
    posted by gern at 11:18 PM on February 10, 2010


    Short update on the Siegel heirs vs. DC suit.
    posted by marxchivist at 5:13 PM on March 1, 2010


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