Zack Snyder's attempt at rebooting Superman with the 2013 film Man of Steel was extremely divisive amongst critics and fans. While some believe that it was overly dark and depressing a movie for a character like Superman, others say that it captured the essence of the character well, while reinventing him to become more relatable and interesting for modern audiences. However, it is certain that the movie did have its moments, where it was extremely emotional and made the audiences feel for the characters. Here are five of the best, most powerful and impactful scenes in Man of Steel:
5. Clark's Inner Struggles & Pa Kent's Advice
After General Zod broadcast a message to the whole planet, the world went into panic mode as humanity came to realise that they weren't alone in the universe. The fact that Zod threatened to destroy the world if this alien didn't come out of hiding didn't help either.
This scene is a perfect transition from a flashback to Clark's childhood, where he was being bullied by others, and gets some advice from good ol' Pa Kent about what kind of a person he chooses to become in the future, to the present-day Clark Kent, where he's ready to follow his father's advice, and do the morally right thing.
4. Clark And Pa Kent Have A Conversation
Another interaction between father and son, this scene serves to highlight how close Clark was to his parents, and how the death of Jonathan Kent later in the movie would affect him. The conversation is really touching, as Pa Kent explains to Clark where he came from, and what lies ahead of him.
Clark finally learns why he has these special powers. He now needs to decide what kind of a man he will become, and how he will use these powers. Finding all this out at a young age of 13 is heavy stuff.
3. Clark Struggles To Control His Powers
Unlike previous Superman movies, Man of Steel successfully showed Clark's struggles while growing up, how he gradually adjusted to his powers. This scene is a perfect example of how Clark felt when he discovered his powers at a very young age. The fact that we see Clark struggle, and be afraid of his powers at such a young age, is extremely heartbreaking.
Imagine yourself as a 6 year old, sitting in class, and suddenly you were able to see the skeletons of everyone around you. That's bound to make you completely terrified of what's going on. In this moment, we see a great bond between Clark and Martha Kent, and it helps to establish the close relationship between the two, and how it grows even stronger after the death of Jonathan Kent.
2. Zod's Monologue
Man of Steel made General Zod one of the most sympathetic and understandable comic book villains ever. On one hand, there are characters like Heath Ledger's Joker from The Dark Knight, who exists solely to cause chaos and anarchy. Then there are villains like Loki from The Avengers, who want to take over the world.
Zod, however, had no such agenda. As explained in the movie, the children on Krypton were born and raised for a very specific purpose. General Zod's purpose was to ensure the survival of his people. This was taken away from him by Kal-El. He was now a man without any purpose in life... that's harsh. No wonder he wanted to destroy the planet. Combines with Michael Shannon's delivery of the line just makes the scene even better.
Man of Steel actually makes you feel for the villain, their pain, their anger, and provides real depth and motivation to their actions. This scene was the perfect example of that.
1. Superman's First Flight
This (in my opinion) is the single most powerful and impactful scene in the whole movie. This scene represents the "birth" of Superman, and how he begins on his journey to become the protector of the world.
Thanks to the modern CGI and Zack Snyder's excellent work, this scene shows the raw power behind Superman's flight, as he leaves cracks in the ground and takes off at an extremely high velocity.
With the beautiful cinematography, stunning visuals, and Hans Zimmer's stunning soundtrack playing in the background, it serves to highlight how happy Clark is after discovering what he is truly capable of.
After suffering through bullying, self-doubt, and fear of his powers, he has finally come to accept them, and realised that he was sent here for a greater purpose - to guide the people of Earth and protect. To accomplish what his real parents never could by saving Earth from destruction.
All in all, Man of Steel was certainly a good start to kick off the DCEU, establishing a great Superman. The overarching plot of the DCEU has been focused on Superman's rise to becoming the hero we all love, and his transformation is nearly complete. Look forward to the next Justice League movie to see the return of Superman!
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