October 01, 2019
First off, I want to start by saying that I enjoyed this edit. After reading through the cutlist, I knew that Zarius approached this edit in a radically different way than I would, but that's okay. I was interested to see his take on this tale. So no points off for things like keeping the kid as Clark's son (or, for that matter, keeping him in the film at all), as I knew that those things would be in place going into it.
I loved the opening of this edit. Starting it off with Lex's story was a great approach. Kevin Spacey's performance as Lex Luthor was a highlight of this film, so I liked the narrative choice to use his story here as the driving narrative.
The main issue I have with this edit is that Superman seems to have no driving narrative. My wife and I both agreed that the movie felt more like a collection of scenes than a cohesive story. It was a bold choice to rearrange scenes so drastically, and I appreciate the effort, but I feel like the film just didn't flow well. If Superman has been away for quite a while (long enough to not know that Lois even has a child), then why are Lois and Richard discussing Superman right now? Why is she contemplating writing an article about Why the World Needs Superman right now? Superman being heavily on everyone's minds before he even shows up again is weird. And the first interaction between Lois and Clark (their last interaction in the theatrical release) just feels off. It feels more like a good-bye than a hello. Additionally, it's weird that there's talk about this "blackout" throughout the whole film without ever seeing it. It's a huge part of Lois' arc; it's even what gets her on Lex's boat. So it's very strange that we never see it or hear what it was. And finally, the lack of backstory for Clark (almost all scenes from the farm are gone) take away from his development as a character. Without all of that, Clark really has no character development in this film. He's just kinda...there--without even an explanation for why he wasn't there for so long.
While the plane crash at the end did seem to take a while to get going and kinda felt tacked on as the scene was starting out, it made for one heck of an ending. It was a VERY heroic and worthy end to the film. I would never have thought to end the film with the plane crash, but I have to say, it worked really well. Definitely ended the film on a very high note.
I think Zarius said it best when he called this "a highlight reel for the man of steel". Superman shows up and he does some very heroic things. If that's all you're looking for, you'll enjoy this edit. If you're just interested in seeing a fresh take on this narrative, as I was, it's definitely worth the watch. But if you're looking for a strong narrative about Clark as an individual and the loneliness of being a god among men, you'll need to look elsewhere for these deeper themes.