Have you ever read Sumerian poetry or storytelling (it’s more or less the same thing)? It’s extremely repetitive. It makes the elements of the story almost a litany, a chant to be memorized and retold. The first superhero’s story was written in Sumerian: the story of Gilgamesh, who was thought to have been a demigod, two thirds god, one third human; five epic poems were written about him that we know about, and were distributed widely in ancient Mesopotamia.
Our modern legends owe a lot to Gilgamesh and the Sumerian view of him, especially our modern legend of Superman – so when retellers of the story take liberties with it trying to make it artificially trendy, they misunderstand what they’re working with and miss the mark.
From the trailer released today, it’s clear that director Zach Snyder and screenwriters David S. Goyer and Christopher Nolan understood what they were working with. The new film looks less like it was meant to keep kiddies happy on a Saturday morning and more like an honest treatment of the Man of Tomorrow and what his life might be like were he here today. There is a lot of action on the screen, but every detail on the screen adds up to a whole instead of fighting for attention. The last several Superman movies have ranged from lackluster to embarrassing, but we think this one will be one to remember.
Man of Steel, from Warner Bros. Studios, opens June 14.
- Official Man of Steel web site
- Man of Steel on Facebook