To be honest, I think I could have seen just the opening credits and gone home happy. To hear John Williams's score and then see the unbelievably awesome 80's-style credits flash past, I felt like I was 8 years old. (Not that I was 8 years old in 1978, mind you, but then again I don't think my parents took their infant daughter to see Supes that year.)
My biggest complaints?
- The kid needed a haircut. I thought he was a girl in the trailers. A really unkempt girl.
- Most predictably cheesy moment: Lois in the hospital talking to Superman, saying, "I don't know if you can hear me..."
- Superman's affected enough by kryptonite to get beat up by Lex & Co., but later "overcomes" his weakness enough to hurtle the crystal island into space. The kryptonite-infested crystal island. ...How?
- And Alex has a point about how on earth did Lex get stranded on a tropical island when he was right off New York. Not that I thought about it at the time (unlike the dramatic day/night shift in X-men 3 that drove me crazy).
- In my mind, the kid. Just two days before, a relative spilled the beans on the kid's father to Alex and myself. But they handled it fairly well--he wasn't instantly all-powerful, you didn't actually hear Lois tell Supes (thank goodness), and at first I thought Supes was just going to strongly hint it at the end--but then he had to go and say "son," which I thought was a shame. They were handling it so elegantly--but then again, I'm sure they didn't want 35% of the audience to leave the theater saying, "So what was that about? Why was Richard White's kid so strong?" Sadly, the writers' lack of faith in the audience is probably justified.
- I was also skeptical because beautiful, gorgeous, as those trailers were, Jor-El's voiceover had a distinctly Messiah-like flavor. However, the voiceover being used in a different context in the actual movie, I didn't get that feeling while watching it.
- And I was distinctly unhappy--pre-movie--with Kevin Spacey's casting as Lex--but I take it all back now. He might be old enough to be Superman's dad, but he's so delightfully good. Er, at being evil. (And Parker Posey, as usual, is genius.)
- Did I mention the opening credits? What a beautiful ode to the original, and that nostalgia struck a cord in our GenX hearts last night.
- Beauty. Um, did you see the costumes, the sets, the colors, the cinematography? Classic. Gorgeous. I could watch it with no dialogue and be immensely happy.
- Restraint. They almost made it on the kid point, but they really shone through on the romance. Not a lot of mush, and in the end, Superman doesn't get the girl (really). And related to this: Lois didn't find out Clark = Supes. It was elegant instead of eye-rolling.
- The spirit of Christopher Reeve. I was also skeptical of their casting here, and maybe some people won't like his attempt at channeling Reeve's performance, but I thought it was spot-on. His Clark was enjoyable, and his Superman was classic.
- The moment where the kid looks at Superman on the TV, then looks at Clark with that "hmmm" look.