Man of Steel (2013) Review

Man of Steel has a Zack Snyder look and feel with a Goyer/Nolan story, and if that is something that appeals to you then Man of Steel is your film. Somehow the team behind this film have made superman both more down to earth than any superman film before whilst also making him far more powerful and raw as a superhero. The visuals are just unbelievable and I’ll devote a paragraph to discussing that, the acting is good and General Zod is just wow. I have heard complaints that the film couldn’t decide between a science fiction film and a superhero film but to be honest that’s idiotic, the two blend perfectly and they did it in such a realistic way I am surprised it hasn’t been done before. I’ll go into much more detail below but for now bookmark this if you are waiting to see the film, leave any comments below, if you have seen the film then check out the spoiler sections and I will look forward to hearing everyone’s thoughts.

“My name is General Zod. I have journeyed across an ocean of stars to reach you. Your world has sheltered one of my citizens. He will look like you, but he is not one of you. To those of you who know his location, the fate of your planet rests in your hands. To Kal-El, I say this: Surrender within 24 hours, or watch this world suffer the consequences.”



In the pantheon of superheroes, Superman is the most recognized and revered character of all time. Clark Kent/Kal-El (Cavill) is a young twentysomething journalist who feels alienated by powers beyond anyone’s imagination. Transported to Earth years ago from Krypton, an advanced alien planet, Clark struggles with the ultimate question – Why am I here? Shaped by the values of his adoptive parents Martha (Lane) and Jonathan Kent (Costner), Clark soon discovers that having super abilities means making very difficult decisions. But when the world needs stability the most, it comes under attack. Will his abilities be used to maintain peace or ultimately used to divide and conquer? Clark must become the hero known as “Superman,” not only to shine as the world’s last beacon of hope but to protect the ones he loves.

Tim’s Film Reviews Recommended

Story: 90%     Acting: 90%     Characters: 90%     Dialogue: 75%

Sci-Fi/Action/Superhero: 100%     Style/Sound: 100%     Visuals: 100%

Total: 91%


I really liked the story and as an origin film it was very brave because I don’t know how they’d top the extreme nature of this one. The way they played out the origin story was clever in my opinion because you get a stunning Krypton Scene at the beginning, but after Clark gets to earth its straight into him as an adult and his life growing up is mostly recollection from Clark in some way linking to what’s happening to him at the time. I liked it because it avoided what I feared would be a one hour period of superman as a kid, thank god it wasn’t. Another plus in the story side of things was that I was never bored, not once did I look at the wall or at the ground whilst a stupid scene you know will be boring. The acting is great and I have no complaints of anyone in their respective roles only that I hope some like Lois Lane and Perry White get more screen time in any sequel but as an origin film it can be forgiven easily. Personal favourite would be surprise surprise General Zod played by the very talented Michael Shannon who has some great dialogue and easily some of my favourite scenes in the film.


I am going to talk about the science fiction and superhero elements separately. First off the science fiction as this film likes to point out this isn’t your parents superman film and the main point of that is the realism involved in the film, and the best example of that is the sheer amount of detail put into everything. Krypton is an alien world with alien landscapes and alien creatures and is incredible well fleshed out for what only appears in the film for maybe 20 minutes, obviously not going into too much detail because I’ll spoil it but throughout the film the krypton’s and the technology they use is realistic and very alien.


Now onto the superhero elements of the film, in which I think they handled it quite well because they had to balance friendly alien living among us with the superhero mythology it’s based off. Trying to avoid spoiler territory is difficult in this area but I’ll compare it with Superman Returns, one the cape is bright red rather than a darker colour which I didn’t like, two he hits things and he hits them hard! And three Metropolis is Metropolis and not a skinned version of New York. This film really makes me hate Returns all that more.


The visuals? Well I have been struggling to think of a way to describe them in a comparative way but cannot simply because there has never been anything quite as explosively large scale as this film. The best way to describe it is if you looked at some of the superman cartoons for example when Darkseid fights superman in Metropolis and the city is practically turned to rubble, yeah well they somehow made that into a live action sequence and I never thought they could. Every visual in this film was without a doubt perfect and so realistic looking despite what must have been extensive CGI use. My personal favourite in visual terms was either the civil war on Kryton or the epic final battle between Zod and Superman. The score of the film has to get praise as well and Hans Zimmer did a great job as always, his score added to atmosphere of the film without drawing attention away, but I love the person who decided to make it so load. I paid for an IMAX ticket and so I expect to deafened.



Seriously guys turn away now to avoid spoilers. There are a couple of things featured in this film that I am sure that superman fans may take as a little annoying or blasphemous in some cases. One would obviously be Lois knowing Superman’s identity before meeting as reporters, to me it’s not really a big problem because it kind of solves a massive gaping hole in the logic of superman in that a brilliant reporter can’t tell that Clark and Superman are the same person, am sorry but no glasses would be good enough. Oh and he does wear the glasses at the end which I loved! They kept saying he didn’t in this film but I knew they had to have it in there. But now the big controversy of killing Zod, you could take it as a darker and more cynical look on superman or you take it the way I do that General Zod was so cruel that the greatest pain he could inflict upon Superman would be to take in some small way a part of his innocence, something that no other super villain ever did to Superman. My view is that as children will watch this film that they will actually see a superhero who feels great pain in having to take the life of another even a villain, it’s something that maybe lost to some but I think that is ultimately what  a superhero is, somebody to whom taking life isn’t the solution to the problem. On that matter I complained quite a bit about Iron Man picking up a machine gun and killing five people, it just doesn’t seem right for a superhero.



Don’t forget my trailer reviews for trailers 2, 3 and 4.

The best reviews I found would be these:

“Ultimately, Man of Steel will soar past the expectations of many fans after the disappointing Superman Returns that was overloaded with character development and too little action. Almost the complete reverse” The Focused Filmographer. Full Review 

“MAN OF STEEL provides more than just a rollercoaster ride of action. It gets to the heart of the character, makes great use of a variety of super-powers Superman has at his disposal, and creates a world filled with deep characters” Guys Film Quest. Full Review 

“Man of Steel” is an epic, dramatic superhero film with great special effects, powerful action scenes, and a new iteration of one of the greatest superheroes of all time” Fogs’ Movie Reviews. Full Review 

“While I’ll probably have to see the film again before I can truly tell whether I love it or not, most people will fall in love with it straight away. Go check this film out, it’s finally a Superman film that works in the present realm of superhero films.” Hyper Sonic. Full Review 

“Snyder succeeds at making MAN OF STEEL a human story told in a poignant way. With exploding buildings and decimated cities, of course.” Blank Page Beat Down. Full Review 



My favourite scene would have to be the unbelievably epic show down between General Zod and Superman after Zods ship gets sucked into the Phantom Zone. Zod has lost everything, his men, his people and most importantly his reason for living. So now all that is left for Zod is to enact revenge on Superman and we get one of the best lines throughout the entire film “No matter how violent, every action I take is for the greater good…of my people”. Zod made sure that in the end is was him or Superman and there was no other way the deadly conflict could end.


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About Tim The Film Guy

Very opinionated about films Mwahahahahaha!

132 responses to “Man of Steel (2013) Review”

  1. boxofficebuzzab says :

    Good review! I very much enjoyed this one as well. Loved Zimmer’s score and the emphasis on the sci-fi elements of the story.


  2. Hypersonic55 says :

    Cool review yo. Seems like you loved the film a lot more than I did. I thought the film was good, but it was not nearly as incredible as I thought it’d be. This film was hyped up to the highest degree and in the end my expectations weren’t met. There were a lot of kick ass elements here and there, but there were a few cracks in the design too. I feel like I’ll be in the minority because I haven’t fallen in love with the film like everybody else did. Man of Steel was cool, but I’ll probably wait for the sequel to be the epic film I’m looking for.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Thank you. I get why people got far too hyped for this film, the trailers showed a glorious film that has the best qualities of a hundred excellent movies. Sadly that’s the trick with trailers they try to get people to see the film not aptly describe what your going to watch.

      However I knew what I wanted from this film and I thankfully got it, kick ass action and some emotional depth but not too much.

      Now that we get the story and we know his power and world at play we can focus on characters and romances in the sequels :D


  3. table9mutant says :

    Great review! You know, even though that rating is WAY off… Lol! 60% seems about right. ;-)


  4. sidekickreviews says :

    The previews and commercials were so long I had to pee so badly before the movie started. All I could think of is when is good time to leave my seat to pee. Dang that movie is long. My favorite scene is learning to fly.


  5. Dan says :

    Impressive stuff. I’ve read mainly middling to quite critical reviews so this is a nice surprise. I’ve yet to see the film but I’m buoyed by your enthusiasm for it.


  6. Nerdy Girl Ramblings says :

    Wow a 98%!!! Although I’ve heard both good and bad things, the most common comments I have been hearing/reading are pretty middle of the road and only because of the insane amount of hype are leaving people disappointed. I have yet to see Man of Steel and although I definitely intend to, I’m not a big Superman fan. I understand the reasons I’m less of a fan can be argued with a lot of superheros, he just happens to be one of my least favorites. That being said, I may not like it as much as you, but I have a feeling I’ll enjoy it considering my expectations for a Superman origin story aren’t amazingly high. I think, when it comes to superhero movies, it’s all about personal preferences and you definitely can’t please everyone. Well, unless you’re Joss Whedon, then you come pretty close.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Its a good film! Everyone’s entitled to their opinions and I get that Superman isn’t everyone’s favourite superhero and that’s fine. I hope you like the film when you see it and that you at least agree with me in general :D


  7. filmhipster says :

    Holy smokes man, 98%???
    You must have been in a very decent mood that night. It had a lot of problems I thought but I was entertained for sure. Fantastic summer blockbuster.


  8. atothewr says :

    Haven’t seen it, but I really can’t wait to go. Nice review and thanks for the spoiler warnings. So many reviewers fail to do that.


  9. Tom says :

    Nice review Tim! Glad to see we could have possibly crafted a mostly-agreeing review together. Wish I got my shit together quicker and we could have, but either way — I’m liking your review as well as I think I covered more of some of the generals. I thought Man of Steel was a spectacular experience, and I, like you, really don’t understand why it’s getting bashed so hard. Sometimes all people want to do is criticize something that’s great. Or at least, that’s what seems to be going on right now. . . .57% on Rotten Tomatoes…are you kidding me?? :\


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Thanks Tom, we certainly could have :D

      There are only a few proffesional critics who I take any notice of and they all thankfully gave this film a good score, Empire Magazine (Subscribed) Total Film (also Subscribed) and Screen Rant who normally on the ball with their reviews :D

      Superman Returns got 72%, Rotten Tomatoes doesn’t work. However user reviews are quite high :D

      Thanks for commenting Tom, what was your favorite scene or Line?


      • Tom says :

        My personal favorite scene was the opening moment, when Jor-El and Lara were giving up their son. It was so fantastically done, and heartbreaking at the same time. Really helped set a darker tone for this movie (a tone that I didn’t have a problem with lol)


  10. Franz Patrick says :

    People bitch about this movie so much. I stopped reading reviews because I noticed that there is a lot of cynicism floating around out there. What irks me most is the claim that it should have had more sense of humor. Uhh, this is not “The Avengers.” (Which I loved.) Sure, mention what you hoped it would have had or been but always evaluate the film for what it is.

    Was I entertained? Hell to the fucking yes. As someone who was not even excited about this movie six months ago (until more trailers came out later), it exceeded my expectations.

    Like many, I prefer the first half. I thought the flashbacks are utilized exceedingly well. Also, like many, I thought some of the fight scenes during the last 45 minutes or so feel drawn out. However, unlike many, I was more or less OK with the drawn out, overblown, badass action. I was into it and I cared about what would happen.

    Overall, I really enjoyed the changes this movie made with respect to the original material. Especially with the Lois thing. I liked Amy Adams a lot as Lois.

    Cheers for a sequel!


    • Tom says :

      I couldn’t have said it better myself dude. . .


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      To be fair a little humour here and there wouldnt have been too bad but origin story as a whole are a darker affair, I mean look at The Amazing Spiderman, Batman Begins and even Iron Man 1 was the most serious of the series :D

      The Krypton scene was very impressive and detailed, and I liked the use of flash backs rather than super long coming of age film about superman :D

      Thanks for commenting Franz, and bring on the sequels :D


  11. knoxcarnabyoverstreet says :

    Though it may have been a bit drawn out, Superman and General Zod battling at the end was definitely my favorite scene. :D


  12. Derek says :

    God review. I really liked this movie a lot and can’t quite understand the reviews it has gotten from some critics.
    Count me in as enjoying the climactic battle between Superman and Zod. I am as big a comic book geek as there is but the actions Superman took in that fight didn’t bother me one bit.
    And Faora was awesome.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Thanks Derek, I don’t get the mixed reviews either, I do take solace in my favourite reviews gave it good reviews. Empire Magazine, Total Film and Screen Rant :D

      That fight was unbelievably epic! And Faora was great, forgot to talk about her :D

      Thanks for the comment, what was your favorite scene or line?


  13. FH7 Productions says :

    I like your detail on the special effects, that is the sort of thing that makes me head out to theaters.


  14. Victor De Leon says :

    Nice review, Tim! I still have some reservations but I may go either way once I actually see it. As far as Zimmer is concerned, I am not a big fan of his music but I have the MOS score and it is very epic. Glad you liked it. Good post buddy!


  15. CMrok93 says :

    Good review Keith. A very fun and entertaining movie, but at the same time, pretty disappointing since it could have been so much more. I didn’t mind it for what it was, but could have been so much better and more focused in on what story it was telling and how it ended.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      I’ll let Keith know you liked his review :D

      Well am glad you enjoyed it at least even if it was disappointing, maybe there will be a super long directors cut that solves your problems with the film. We can hope :D

      Thanks for commenting Dan, what was your favourite scene?


  16. Shah Shahid says :

    Hey Tim,

    Thanks for the shout out! Glad you loved it. I more or less had the same reaction as you. You mirror some of my enjoyments, as well as disappointments; Fishburne not getting enough screen time, etc.

    About the ending, I liked the rationale and the concept. I loved Cavill’s first, and only real display of acting as he bursts out screaming. I just would have preferred a little post-killing referance to it afterwards. A small scene with Ma Kent maybe, telling him it’s ok… or some other somber moral. I had a problem how we just breezed past the scene after it happened. Felt a little jarring.


    • Tim The Film Guy says :

      Thanks Shah and your welcome :D

      Haha first display of acting, well there was very little room for anyone to act except Zod what with all the mayhem and acting has never been a need for Superman as he is a pretty stoic character :D

      I feel like there were quite a few scenes that they had to cut down a little to save time, expect something like you said in the 300 minute directors extended cut on bluray :D

      Lastly, what was your favourite scene?


  17. keith7198 says :

    We just got back from vacation late last night so will be seeing this today. I’m glad to see someone give it really high marks. I’m anxious to read you for review when I get back.


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