Good, but not great - but that's more an indictment on the original movie than on the editor. B3nmitchell has made a tremendous effort to save this movie - and I could watch it all the way through, which I couldn't do with the original.
The only edit problem I found was the finale being quite bitty, with Marsden's character suddenly arriving and loading Lois and son into the plane. And then Superman being thrown off the island, then suddenly recovering (why?).
The reveal of the son of Superman was also very out of left field and didn't really work in this edit.
But I couldn't really think of any other way to save the movie -except maybe to remove Marsden's character entirely? Then the son of Superman would be more obvious.
Anyway, well done b3nmitchell. My kids enjoyed it! :-)
Well this certainly was an invigorating edit to watch. I wasn't much of a fan of the original, mostly due to lack of action and an annoyingly written Lois, but I believe this to be the best version of this film I have seen. I agree with ALL the cuts made, they really made sense to me (though one of them was a bit jarring) it wasn't too noticeable. I applaud b3nmitchell's dedication and thought to the pacing of this edit. I quite enjoyed it!
I watched this edit earlier in the week, i've always had a love hate relationship with superman returns, there's just so much that doesn't really fit into the movie and superman doesn't really get much chance to do a whole great deal of super things.
Along comes the Resolved edit, striving to put right what once went wrong and hoping each leap will scale a tall building in a single bound. Well for the most part it works, Superman doesn't get to do more super things but he does have some of his weaker moments removed.
Unlike some people I've always found Spacey's lex to be a little too over the top, just like Gene Hackman's, hindsight is not my friend, after being subjected to the likes of Clancy Brown's ruthless businessman in the animated series, or Michael Rosenbaum's bad guy pretending to be a nicer guy with bad intentions the older lex feels like a joke in comparison. So toning him down actually worked for me, Kitty and Lois are also reduced in their annoying traits, so I am greatful for that.
Like others I didn't really like Richards rescue sequence, I think it works but barely and as Isaid superman barely gets to do a great deal (stops the plane, walks into a machine gun and then that disasters sequence near the end before the island) so depriving him of one more thing seems a little bit silly. I think everything is pretty solid choices until the last 20 mins or so, because without the stabbing we never really get a feel for supermans weakness and lex's escape seems a little apbrupt, I actually prefer the island sequence too because its a silly little closure.
It is is better than the theatrical but it's not my preferred edit. It's certainly a valiant effort and I like that you tried to do completely different things from other people
Do you recommend this edit?
Thank you for taking the time to watch the project, and for your honest and thorough review. I don't think that using the Lex island ending would have been such a bad thing if it was tagged on the end after the credits. (as another reviewer pointed out). Perhaps down the road a bit I'll release a blu-ray version and take a second look at the rescue while I'm at it.
This was a mixed bag for me. On the one hand, b3nmitchell has effectively streamlined the film, cutting away much redundancy and improving the character dynamics overall. But on the other hand, not everything works as well as intended, and cutting away personality extremes from all of the characters (good and bad) leaves everything feeling a bit lifeless.
First the good: this is a very professional editing job in most places. The cutting is frequent but invisible. Going back and watching some of these scenes in the original cut after watching "Resolved," I was amazed by how many changes the editor implemented without my realizing it. The poor writing and casting of Lois Lane was one of the biggest stumbling blocks of the original film, and while she is still the biggest problem here (seriously, Kate Bosworth is just awful in the role), she's not as intensely hate-able due to a lot of irritating lines being cut. The pacing is also much improved over the overly-ponderous original's, with many redundancies and weak plot threads cut away. For the most part, these were all very good decisions. Removing the ridiculous other half of Luthor's plan alone is a massive improvement.
As for the bad, there are a few issues. The biggest for me is that Kevin Spacey's perfectly over-the-top-with-an-edge performance as Lex Luthor has been seriously neutered here. I feel like editor b3nmitchell has mistaken personality for "melodrama" and in doing so has robbed the film of one of its greatest assets. I loved the unhinged playfulness that Spacey brought to the role, and having his performance toned down next to the (necessarily) toned-down Lois Lane saps the film of much of it's dynamism. I also had some problems with the way the ending was handled.
The sequence built for Richard's rescue of Lois and Jason doesn't really work. It's really a credit to how well the rest of the film was cut, but this scene sticks out like a sore thumb. The cuts come swiftly and without rhythm, with the result being a choppy, confusing mess. It was a good try, but it's easily the weakest spot in the whole edit. Also, while the final confrontation between Luthor and Supes (a greatly altered scene all the way through Superman's lifting of the island) is really beautifully handled, it felt weird that Luthor would just toss his nemesis off a cliff without relishing the moment. Had there been a way to include Luthor's line "Now fly" just before he does so, this scene would have been perfect. Also, I know the last scene with Luthor and Kitty trapped on the island was a bit silly, but is it really better than him just getting away? Even as a post-credits sequence, I would have liked to have had that closure.
In the end, this edit could not save Superman Returns for me, but I did find it to be an improvement over the original. I'm going to recommend watching it should you be interested, as there is some impressive editing on display here and there are still sequences in the movie that are a lot of fun. Just don't expect it to turn back the earth's rotation for you; this is still the Superman story we were given.
The DVD was perfect, with great audio and video quality and some really beautiful handmade menus.
Do you recommend this edit?
Ouch! Kind of a harsh rating, but I guess you can't please everyone. Thanks for the thorough review. :)