Superman Returns is a 2006 film directed by the critically acclaimed Bryan Singer. Singer, best known for his work on The Usual Suspects and The first two X-Men movies, co-wrote the screenplay for the relaunch of the Superman franchise. He turned down the offer to direct X-Men 3 to make Superman Returns.
The Superman franchise is more popular for the performances of the legendary Christopher Reeve than the films themselves. Superman Returns is a continuity 'branching off' from elements of 'the first two films'. Personally, I have never been a big fan of the franchise. However, Superman Returns deserves praise! It is probably, together with Steven Spielberg's War of The Worlds, one of the most under-rated films of recent times. It is ground-breaking cinema. You do not expect Bryan Singer, who Peter Jackson called up to direct scenes of his phenomenal King Kong, to pull off some cock and bull movie. I seriously do not understand why this movie doesn't have a rating up their in the 8's. It is, together with Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins, one of the best comic book to celluloid adaptations ever made. Right from newcomer Brandon Routh's portrayal of a very vulnerable Superman (With all due respect to Christopher Reeve!), to Kevin Spacey putting the icing on the cake with his chilly take on Lex Luthor, Superman Returns is a treat!
Be it the straightforward storyline or the realistic performances (Loved Kate Bosworth as Lois Lane!), be it the minimal dependency on visual effects (Superman actually gets beaten up with a person's bare hands!) or the smash-bang edge-of-the-seat action sequences; Superman Returns is a film worth watching.. Over and over again.
8/10. The sequel, Man of Steel, is in the making already.