Amy Adams is good as Lois Lane.
Now on to the bad stuff:
Let’s get Henry Cavill out of the way first. News: He’s too cute to have this role. He’s underwear-model cute and it’s disturbing. Also disturbing is this: if you’re Kal-El from Krypton, why are your lower teeth so very very crooked? Why didn’t this man have orthodontia in his childhood? Is he British or something? Oh wait…
Russell Crowe is Jor-El. He’s great, if you like Russell Crowe being all brooding.
I hate Kevin Costner, but I liked him a lot here. He doesn’t overact. Diane Lane is Mrs. Kent. She’s fine. Now, on to the story, the interminable, tedious story.
We spend what seems like ten years on Krypton before Lara and Jor-El finally push the send button to get little Kal-El to Earth. Suddenly, Kal’s a man (they call him “Kal”) doing really strong things, holding up oil platforms, walking through fire. The chronology is all back-and-forth loony, but we sigh and get through it, because, after all, this is Superman, and we’re Americans, so we have to like it, right?
The geography is also weird, because Clark is all over the place, helping people out, and he just miraculously stumbles (working as “Joe the Cargo Man”) onto a leftover Kryptonian base up in Canada where Lois Lane from the Daily Planet is doing a story. They meet. He saves her.
General Zod needs to kill Kal/Clark to use his cells. It seems Kal/Clark is a kind of uber-horcrux for all Kryptonians ever, amen. Clark decides he likes humans better.
He’s also a not-subtle Christ figure. When I say it’s not subtle, I mean he’s sitting in a church in front of a Giant Picture of Jesus talking about self-sacrifice for the good of Mankind. He also assumes a cruciform position more than once, but once very obviously Messiah-like, hanging, arms-outstretched, between heaven and earth.
Our Greatest City is once again blasted to smithereens and buildings fall down all over the place. Also, as in Thor, a small midwestern Main Street is trashed. Hilariously, there are cars just driving around in the background, as if, when your town is beset with alien battleships, you continue on your daily grind. Of course, it’s the midwest, and those people have backbones. I did enjoy seeing the IHOP destroyed, because they have such horrible coffee, and the Sears, because you know, it’s Sears.
The end is over-the-top silly. Clark is all, “I need to get a job so I can keep my ear to the ground and know what’s going on.” You know the job he gets and where it is, but really, I know what’s going on and I just watch CNN on my computer–which saves a step of having to find a phone booth: if you’re at home, you can keep your super pajamas on all the time. I know I do.