There hasn’t been a really good Superman movie since Superman II way back in 1980.  No one has touched the performance of Christopher Reeve as the Man of Steel.  But even the first two movies lacked something that would make it true to what fans want to see.

When it was announced that Christopher Nolan would be taking over the new Superman reboot, I was extremely excited.  After what he did for the Batman franchise, I am hopeful he will bring that something magical to Superman.  The previous Superman movies were a little bit of drama mixed in with special effects and sprinkled with ridiculous humor (Richard Pryor in Superman III).

The key villain throughout the series has been Lex Luthor but not the Lex fans are use to seeing from the comics.  Played brilliantly by Gene Hackman then by Kevin Spacey in Superman Returns, the character to me was always a bit of a joke.  He was the kind of villain to fell ass-backward into his schemes and plots and was never really much of a threat to Superman.  That’s not how the “real” Luthor is.  He’s a ruthless, power hungry, obsessed, plotting genius who wants nothing more than to see Superman lying dead at his feet.  That’s the kind of villain fans want to see take on Superman.  Better yet, how about a fresh approach?  There is an entire universe of rouges lined up to take him on; Doomsday for one.  Tell me you wouldn’t want to see him and Superman slug it out toe to toe while in the process reducing Metropolis to rubble.

That’s not to say that Superman is all brawn and no brains, but the villain should stretch him to his limits and make themselves a genuine threat and a force to be reckoned with.  There are plenty of bad guys to choose from, Darkseid, Metallo, Cyborg Superman or Bizarro, so don’t get pigeon holed into Lex as the resident baddie. Unless they are willing to go beyond the comical nature of the past Luthor incarnations, then a new villain needs to be chosen.  Being one of the most recognized and popular superheroes, why can’t they stay true to the character and make a good movie?

Then there comes the subject of who to get to play the Man of Steel.  In my opinion as good as Christopher Reeve was in the role, he lacked something…muscles.  I’m sorry, Superman I am use to and picture in my mind is muscular and looks like he could perform the feats we’re use to seeing, more so than Reeves or Brandon Routh.  The only actor to come close to the look was Dean Cain in Lois and Clark but he always looked more like Superboy than Superman.  There’s Tom Welling of Smallville who looks good in the part, but still has too much of a boyish appearance.  All things being equal I would like to see Welling put on the blue and red and see him on the big screen; to me it would only be fitting since he’s played the Clark Kent character over the past ten years.

With Nolan supervising the production of this new movie and rumors already starting to fly about possible directors, it would not be fair to see another The Dark Knight type film with Superman taking the place of Batman.  But it should be darker than any of the previous films, darker, more action, more substance.  That is something all of them have lacked.  The first 1979 movie was packed with A-list stars that made it credible but lacked the substance, even for that time.  As in all first of the series movies, you have to tell a back story, the origins of the character.  But after all this time, everyone knows the back story of Superman; let’s get down to the action.  Even a retelling of the death of Superman would be a welcomed approach.  Then leave it open for sequels and spin offs or maybe even a Superman/Batman or Justice League movie.

So what would I like to see in a Superman movie?  That’s simple; heart and soul.  Whoever ends up directing this new movie, rumor to be titled Superman – The Man of Steel; needs to bring with it the same heart and passion that directors like Nolan did for Batman and John Favreau did for Iron Man.  What makes these types of movies successful is how they are reacted to by the fans.  If you don’t have the fans, you’ve just got another run of the mill genre movie.  Will lightening ever strike twice as it did for Nolan’s The Dark Knight?  Who’s to say, but I think it will happen eventually, but will it with the first outing of a new Superman is any one’s guess.

So what would you like to see in this new Superman movie?  Let me hear your comments.