Reviewed by: Keith Howland
Is Jesus Christ a man, or is he God? Answer
If Jesus is God, how could he die? If Jesus died on the cross, then how can he be alive today? Answer
Was Jesus Christ God, manifest in human form? Answer
Is Jesus Christ really God? Answer
If Jesus was the Son of God, why did He call Himself the Son of Man? Answer
Trinity—How can one God be three persons? Answer
Has science disproved the miracles associated with Jesus Christ? Answer
How can we know there’s a God? Answer
Why does God allow innocent people to suffer? Answer
How can I deal with temptations? Answer
Should I save sex for marriage? Answer
How far is too far? What are the guidelines for dating relationships? Answer
|Featuring||Brandon Routh, Kevin Spacey, Kate Bosworth, James Marsden, Kal Penn, Frank Langella, Hugh Laurie, Sam Huntington, Eva Marie Saint, Shawn Ashmore, Parker Posey, Ted Maynard|
|Producer||Gilbert Adler, Stephen Jones, Chris Lee, Scott Mednick, Jon Peters, Bryan Singer, Thomas Tull|
Superman (Brandon Routh) was away for a while. Like many adopted children, he had gone in search of his true family. Now, five years after his sudden disappearance from Earth, the Last Son of Krypton has returned. But things have not stood still in his absence. Old flame Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth) has a fiancé, Richard White (James Marsden), and a five-year-old son, Jason (Tristan Lake Leabu). Criminal mastermind Lex Luthor (Kevin Spacey) is out of prison, with a new plan for world domination. Perhaps worst of all, Metropolis has learned to live without the caped superhero. But though a city may spurn its savior, it still needs him, now more than ever.
Of course, you know that Metropolis will come to welcome Superman’s return. But will moviegoers welcome Superman Returns? They should. It is a visual treat from start to finish, especially in IMAX (with select scenes in 3-D). Brandon Routh is very good as Superman and Clark Kent, managing to be both grandly heroic and subtly emotional. (He certainly looks the part, too.) Kevin Spacey is entertaining as Lex Luthor, who manages to make you laugh even while concocting vile schemes. There are very light moments and loving tributes to Superman lore sprinkled throughout the story. Director Bryan Singer (who helmed “X-Men” and “X2: X-Men United”) deftly handles all the action and visual-effects sequences, while the screenwriters have wisely chosen to stress character over spectacle.
The film is rated PG-13, which is entirely due to the intensity of the action. The violence in some scenes is rather intense, but it is never bloody. There are a few mild profanities in the dialog, but there is little else that would cause offense. With regards to the film’s suitability for younger children, viewers of “Spider-Man” or “Spider-Man 2” should have a good idea of what to expect of “Superman Returns”.
Apart from being well made and inoffensive, the film touches on some worthy themes. “Superman: The Movie” (1978) had especially highlighted the similarities between Superman and the greatest hero of all, Jesus Christ. He is an only son, possessing great power, sent to Earth to be raised by simple country folk and then, after disappearing into the wilderness for a while, reappearing at age thirty with miraculous displays of selfless heroism and a message of hope. In lines repeated in “Superman Returns,” Superman’s father, Jor-El (Marlon Brando), told him that the people of Earth “can be a great people… they only lack the light to show them the way.”
To that end, Jor-El sent his only son to Earth to light the way and save the perishing. (Compare this with what the Bible says of Jesus in John 1:1-14 and 3:16-21.) Jor-El even speaks of a mystical union with his son, so that “from the son comes the father, and the father the son.” (Compare this with the way Jesus describes his relationship with God the Father in John 10:38—“the Father is in me, and I am in the Father.”)
At one point in the film, Lois Lane tells Superman that “the world doesn’t need a savior—and neither do I.” Superman retorts, “but every day I hear people crying out for one.” That is one reason why any good superhero film—including this one—resonates with millions of viewers throughout the world: They may not know it, but they need a savior. They rejoice when he comes to right the wrongs of the world. But even Superman cannot save everyone, and he has some troubles of his own. By contrast, Jesus Christ bore our troubles on the cross, so that he could effectively save everyone who believes in him. The end of “Superman Returns” may be flawed and a little downbeat, but when Christ returns, it will be a perfect end to history.
Violence: Heavy / Profanity: Mild / Sex/Nudity: Mild
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.