Mixed or average reviews - based on 47 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 2404 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 47
  2. Negative: 3 out of 47
  1. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jun 13, 2013
    Man of Steel is more than just Avengers-sized escapism; it's an artistic introduction to a movie superhero we only thought we knew.
  2. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Jun 10, 2013
    Deploying an impeccable American accent, Brit Henry Cavill may be as charming as the late great Christopher Reeve.
  3. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    Jun 14, 2013
    The most striking and curious aspect of Man of Steel is the way it minimizes and even shuts out women.
  4. Reviewed by: Tim Robey
    Jun 11, 2013
    It has heft, it looks amazing, and it's businesslike to a fault.
  5. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Jun 13, 2013
    If this version of Superman is to have a future — as Warner Brothers seems convinced he will, having already green-lit the sequel — I hope Snyder will dial back both the casualty count and the Krypton mythmaking and instead focus on establishing a fictional Earth that’s rich enough to be worth saving.
  6. 50
    The movie isn’t dead on arrival, like Snyder’s over-reverent "Watchmen." But it’s pleasure-free.
  7. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Jun 13, 2013
    Snyder tries to up the spectacle ante with ever more explosions, crashes, thermal blasts, topological realignments, gunfire and mano-a-mano fistfights. But the result is a punishing sense of diminishing returns and a genre that has finally reached the point of mayhem-induced exhaustion.

See all 47 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Jun 21, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. To be honest in my humble opinion, the opening sequence on planet Krypton felt so much more fleshed out than the entire Star Trek reboot films. That blew my mind away and got me sold on the whole movie instantly. Man of steel was an emotional ride for me. I found myself tearing up a couple of times during the first act of the film. Credit must go to David Goyer and Snyder for capturing the internal turmoil and strife that Clark Kent faces before accepting his calling to be the beacon of light that guides mankind from becoming extinct like Krypton. The action sequences were a beauty to behold. I was glad there was no use of slow-mo effects that Snyder is infamous for in his other films. I actually can picture Nolan’s universe of batman existing in Snyder’s superman universe. The lack of comedic relief in this 1st outing of man of steel can be forgiven because it was important to get his back story fleshed out for potential sequels. I think by taking a serious and realistic approach to this franchise they can build a solid foundation for JL movie or a World’s Finest movie. What also liked about man of steel was how the “villains” where defined in their motivations. General Zod and Faora’s back stories were really logical enough and added more depth to why they wanted to takeover earth in order to continue Krypton’s existence. Last but not least, Hans Zimmer’s score really pulled the strings in magnifying the scale of this movie. He captured all the emotions you should feel in every scene just by the use of music. Simply amazing! I’m gonna watch again 2moro in Imax 3D because I watched it in 2D only. I have to see planet Krypton in glorious 3D. Expand
  2. Jun 14, 2013
    After watching Man of Steel, I immediately came here to give it a review. I am not surprised at the terrible score these "critics" gave this movie, as most of them are complete idiots anyways. The user score is and always will be the only score that matters, and that is exactly what you should be paying attention to if you are an undecided Superman fan who's skeptical whether or not this movie will deliver.

    This might have been pre-programmed in my own mind as to how great this movie was, considering the list of failures so far in 2013. Biggest of note, would be Iron Man 3, but those details will be more suited for it's own review which I plan on writing soon. The pace, writing/script/story and amazing action/effects is what makes this movie one of the best of 2013 so far. A massive redemption overshadowing the must forget "Superman Returns" which hung on the thread of Kevin Spacey's portrayal of Lex Luther. General Zod was the perfect choice as the super villain for this franchise launch(hopefully it's successful enough to be a new franchise), and was well played by Michael Shannon. His female concubine was nearly equally as impressive, her sexiness and powerful warrior spirit pumped just the right amount of juice into what a mighty pair of foes should be like for Superman to face.

    The background story was touching, well written and was perfectly balanced not to bore your eyeballs out in meaningless cry baby scenes of over-emotion(IE Tobey Maguire's Spiderman trilogy). No one would have been a better fit for Jor-El than Russell Crowe. Krypton and it's people/technology have never been portrayed in such great detail and special fx. This movie, as a Superman movie SHOULD, never skimps on the epic action that is the god like red caped hero.

    So if you're not a pompous, over-arrogant, jaded, over-critical critic and are a huge DC comic/Dark Knight series fan, then this movie is a MUST SEE. You will NOT be disappointed. If you are more like the critics, not the users who write reviews here, move along as a cheesy romantic comedy might be more up your alley.
  3. Jun 14, 2013
    I had my doubts about Man Of Steel but after watching Superman come alive and kick some serious ass, I was happily proved wrong. The film captures the humanity of Superman's search to be human even after finding out who he really is. David S. Goyer's screenplay perfectly reflects Kal-El's struggles and challenges growing up in today's world. Zack Snyder has managed to do the impossible, he has successfully made the Man Of Steel relevant and above all human. With a strong cast including Russel Crowe as Jor-El, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, and of course Henry Cavill as Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El. Michael Shannon makes a truly menacing General Zod that you actually respect for his notions but understand his questionable motives. Overall, Man Of Steel is a pleasant surprise filled with plenty of little Easter eggs for DC fans to look out for. This is one summer blockbuster you won't want to miss, Zack Snyder has created another epic superhero masterpiece. Expand
  4. Dec 25, 2013
    I could care less about how many plot holes there are. Sure, after being written by Christopher Nolan and directed by Zach Snyder, I was expecting something truly amazing. Of coarse, I'm always wrong about these things. It was still good, but not by the crappy acting or the plot holes, but the action. I try to avoid looking at how well the characters are developed, and more onto how the film was directed. It was directed well. Expand
  5. Aug 15, 2013
    I'll start with the film's biggest flaw: it clearly can be split into 2 short films:

    1. A sci-fi character drama about an alien trying to
    fit into society while struggling to contain and control his superhuman abilities. So this is what the first 4/5 seasons of Smallville should've been. The fact that it's handled via non-chronological flashback gives it dynamism, so it never becomes stale or boring. We even see an awesome version of Krypton, which actually looks alien, unlike Michael Shannon's (General Zod) screaming tantrums. Also, Russell Crowe is a badass Jor-El.

    But that lasts for like 15 minutes; the real highlights are the Kents (played by Kevin Costner and Diane Lane) and all the child actors whom I don't even want to kill. Good job, Warner! I know I haven't said much of Cavill up until this point, but he doesn't have much to do in this part of the movie, but when he's on screen, he's serviceable and the emphasis is more on the struggles of young/teenage Clark. We get to see the man (/boy) with godlike powers constantly get bullied and emotionally tortured by idiots, a**holes and kids, which makes us see his vulnerability and desire to distance himself from us.

    When he's an adult though he (sort of) loses his calm once.

    Also, some citizens of Smallville (sort) of know who Clark really is. That's actually a refreshing and, if you think about it, logical take on the situation. At the end of this almost masterfully put together first hour there's a strange death scene however, which is justified in the movie, but I can see people having an issue with it.

    2. Here come the problems (and not just the not ginger Jenny Alsen). This is basically an alien invasion/action movie in which Snyder lets his inner child blow s**t up, just without the slow mo.

    I'm just going to say: the action is great, made even better with the HD handheld camera perspective and the sound audio effects (along with Hans Zimmer's score of course) and the CGI is amazing. Thrown punches really do have impact and combatant characters don't look like rag dolls on ropes (I'm looking at you, X-Men Origins). Amy Adams is the best Lois Lane in a long time, Laurence Fishburne plays a great white (punpunpuuun) guy (note to Goyer: Perry NEVER says and never would've said "Now's not the time for journalistic integrity!"), Cavill is actually a perfect fit for the big blue boyscout and Shannon is (somehow) just serviceable; but the menacing Faora (played by Antje Traue) steals the show for the time she's on screen. Oh, and the Lois (at that point he didn't have the name, so let's call him) Hopeman interrogation scene was awesome.

    Not quite this awesome though.

    Now for the major (yet minor... Well, f***k you too!) flaws:

    - Superman punches Zod into Smallville when there's nothing but wide open (uninhabited) fields surrounding them. That's now very cost or human life friendly there, Clarkie. AND right after this Martha Kent remains with Faora and a Kryptonian Pain and Gain reject AND THEY DON'T KIDNAP HER; because who needs leverage against Superman?

    - Necessary (almost like racism in Transformers) military-bro eye bonding moments. Because nothing says America more than the good old (red, white Blue Steel.

    - Unnecessarily long action scene with a dubstep squid robot/ship, but I'm okay with that. Even spell check hates dubstep and so should Superman. If Skrillex is Lex Luthor in Batman vs Superman, I'm giving it 10/10 right now, because yes, dubstep is humanity's biggest enemy. Right after Adam Sandler.

    - The only Kryptonian scientist has a (glorious and) heavy German accent; in case you haven't noticed that the genocidal aliens with superiority complex are space Nazis.

    - Another controversial death scene that really could have been executed, pun intended, better.

    - More people die than there are Justin Bieber fans in Kansas, yet they don't get any kind of a memorial service or ceremony and that's just cold. If the movie specified they really were Girl Wonder followers, it would be a different story.

    A final and omnipresent flaw of the movie is the lack of humor. It's unfortunate, but the character stuff evens that out. The guy with the weight of the world on his shoulders needs some light hearted moments every now and then.

    In all seriousness, as you may have noticed, most of the problems are minor and my biggest flaw (the easy separation in 2 parts) isn't even a one if you don't mind heavy, dense action. Maybe it might have been a good idea to mix punches with tears and words a little bit more often for the sake of more action-phobic movie goers. Irregardless, Snyder still does far more right than wrong and this is definitely a huge step forward for him as a director.

    So, Man of Steel soared mightily, stumbled a bit at the last few yards, but still reached the Sun without falling. It's one of my favorite movies of the year, along with Iron Man 3 (I’m guessing up until I see Elysium).
  6. Aug 22, 2013
    It has spectacular action sequences, thanks in part to Zack Snyder's (from 300) masterful directing. Unfortunately, i cannot say the same about the script and character development, which is a weird thing for a movie written (partly) by Christopher Nolan. It was trying to be complex like the Batman trilogy, but it wasn't. And Henry Cavill's acting is not good. And the actors who are, were given underdeveloped characters. Overall, awesome action scenes is what saved this movie from being a total mess. They are that awesome. Expand
  7. Jun 27, 2013
    the "S" must stand for stupidity.
    They spent so much time with the cinematics that they forgot the plot.
    It was weak, corny and absolutely
    predictable. It had the essentials in there.
    But they were just slapped in with no real focus. There was no originality, it was just a remake.
    The only thing special about this movie was the special effects.
    If they are going to remake these movies they have to do it differently.

    Superman? or Moral:
    of, pertaining to, or concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong; ethical: moral attitudes.

    I could tear this movie apart into tiny pieces and then tear those tiny pieces into more tiny pieces.

    I wanted to leave the cinema halfway through this "blockbuster".
    An absolute shocker.

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