Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 11 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 154 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: An adventure re-told, spanning the Man of Steel's life from his Krypton infancy and Midwest boyhood to his career as Daily Planet reporter Clark Kent and through his titanic struggle with archnemesis Lex Luthor. [Warner Bros.]
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. Boasts a smart screenplay by Robert Benton and David and Leslie Newman, striking cinematography by Geoffrey Unsworth (especially in the Smallville sequence), bright comic turns by Margot Kidder and Gene Hackman, and of course, that winning performance by Christopher Reeve in the title role. Believe a man can fly? You bet!
  2. Estimates of the movie's costs range between $35-and $70-million; whatever the price, it was not too much to pay. As gods go, Superman is one of the godliest; his movie is one of the best.
  3. 100
    Superman is a pure delight, a wondrous combination of all the old-fashioned things we never really get tired of: adventure and romance, heroes and villains, earthshaking special effects, and -- you know what else? Wit.
  4. 88
    There's no doubt that it's a flawed movie, but it's one of the most wonderfully entertaining flawed movies made.
  5. Reviewed by: Jack Kroll
    Jun 4, 2013
    80
    Superman turns out to be a surprisingly infectious entertainment, nicely balanced between warmth and wit, intimacy and impressive special effects, comic-strip fantasy and several elements that make the movie eminently eligible for Deep Thinking about rescue fantasies, cherubic messiahs and other pieces of popcorn metaphysics. [1 Jan 1979, p.46]
  6. Reviewed by: Judith Martin
    80
    it's the simple, earth-bound quality of the film that makes this comic-book fantasy soar.
  7. Reviewed by: Staff (Not credited)
    60
    The film burdens itself with too many story lines and an overlong (though beautifully photographed) prologue, but things really get moving when Reeve takes the screen.

See all 11 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 44
  2. Negative: 2 out of 44
  1. GeorgeS.
    Jul 14, 2006
    10
    Quite possibly the best super hero movie of all time. Special effects years ahead of its time, Puzo's script was great, Donner was spot Quite possibly the best super hero movie of all time. Special effects years ahead of its time, Puzo's script was great, Donner was spot on directing, best complete casting job of all time, and what else can you say about Chris Reeves - he will forever BE Superman. Expand
  2. TedF.
    Oct 28, 2008
    10
    Before Batman Begins, Spider-man 2, Iron Man, and Dark Knight there was Superman and Superman II. Fantastic film making with wondrous Before Batman Begins, Spider-man 2, Iron Man, and Dark Knight there was Superman and Superman II. Fantastic film making with wondrous moments. John Williams score takes flight. They got it right. Superman Returns needs to get back to this formula of film making - bright colors, fun story plots, spunky superboy, and energetic risk taker(Lois Lane). Superman is American Pop culture. I think of Coca Cola, Apple Pie, Uncle Sam, State Fairs, and Amusement Parks. I love the story of Superman. The whole thing. I think Donner and Lester both understood the super hero myth and where it fits with Americana. I would sure love more movies made like these. I don't think they ever get old. Expand
  3. DS
    Nov 22, 2008
    10
    Looks like somebody got bored and decided to trash a classic film. Yeah it seems a bit dated now, but it's a great great movie. Supes is Looks like somebody got bored and decided to trash a classic film. Yeah it seems a bit dated now, but it's a great great movie. Supes is in need of a reboot. Expand
  4. May 16, 2014
    9
    Great movie, really the first good superhero movie and it's a classic despite being somewhat outdated. Gotta love Christopher Reave asGreat movie, really the first good superhero movie and it's a classic despite being somewhat outdated. Gotta love Christopher Reave as Superman he does it perfect and is one of the reasons this movie is a blast. Expand
  5. Sep 30, 2014
    8
    Though it can be corny at times, Christopher Reeves performance as well as Richard Donner's direction and the dazzling effects make Superman a classic
  6. Jun 8, 2014
    7
    The original Superman is campy, superficially fun stuff, and knows it's that way. It's a bit overlong and the dialogue is cheesy at points,The original Superman is campy, superficially fun stuff, and knows it's that way. It's a bit overlong and the dialogue is cheesy at points, but all in all it passes the time. Hey, at least it's better than Man of Steel. Expand
  7. DamonC.
    Jan 28, 2008
    0
    The problem with this movie is that it goes too far with Superman's powers. And whenever he fights a bad guy, he always wins. Its like The problem with this movie is that it goes too far with Superman's powers. And whenever he fights a bad guy, he always wins. Its like he's undestructable and invincible. And director Richard Donner cheesily art directs this movie, with a horrible style, unengaging fashion, and a dull, dudfull life. Superman would have been better if it weren't cheesy, frick'n overrated, and better acting. Its so corny, Richard Donner presents a getting far overaged, and has easily lost its high standards it once had. The affects are terrible, everything sucks. The kryptonyte stuff, the nudity (which in the beginning shows an 8 year-old kid butt-naked, showing absolutely everything, and some parts we don't want to see), its nudity like never before, but a bit too much. The planet Krypton stuff, the 7 crystal things, the ghost of his father, led being a weakness. There are so many stupid ideas. Just to settle the reviews, I personally think this is a simply forgettable bore. Snd a huge disappointing letdown. Expand

See all 44 User Reviews

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