Tuesday, August 16, 2011

All Star Superman film

I’ve already gushed about my enjoyment of the All Star Superman trade; not long ago an animated adaptation of Grant Morrison’s series was made. Having All Star Superman fresh in memory it seemed like a no brainer to take a look at the movie conversion. And I’d say any fan would be pleased with what Warner Bros. delivered to us.

Firstly, I see the All Star Superman movie as more of a abridged version of the comic and less as a film on it’s own; It would be foolish to try and cram a twelve issue trade down to an hour and half…I’d watch it, but that’s still a bit too long for most tastes.

All Star Superman, comic and film, are two halves of a whole – scratch that, All Star Superman as a narrative is complete, but the film should serve as a nice treat for those who’d read the book already.

By film's end Lex Luthor is painted in a slightly different light than the comic.

The story stays very faithful, and some scenes are shot-for-shot rips from the pages of Grant Morrison’s work. That’s certainly a good thing. The animation and art is all top notch. The voice acting is good across the board, although James Denton as Superman comes off a little too flat and monotone occasionally; but it makes sense that Superman would always have a calm tone of voice even in the direst situations.

What I’ve said about All Star Superman the compiled comic can all be used to describe the film version. Some finer points are lost in the transition, such as Superman’s fight with Bizarro; the touching flashback to his Smallville days and the semi related side story about Jimmy Olsen. Luckily most of which aren’t entirely integral to the plot.

Since I am partial to the source material it’s hard see this movie through the eyes of someone who didn’t read the graphic novel. Maybe the story is too weird in some areas. Yet I think most of the core message is visible. I did find the comic had more of a view of mankind as a whole, while the movie focused more on Superman’s last achievements – as I said before I find that both film and comic go together like milk and chocolate, and they should be consumed together…preferably through your eyes!

Warner Bros. has had some really great animated films as of late – Batman: Under the Red Hood comes immediately to mind – and the All Star Superman film fits neatly with the others. I recommend the comic first, but the film shouldn’t be ignored it’s a wonderful addition to Grant Morrison’s tale. 

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