“Superman: The Movie” Still Soars After All These Years

Released on December 15, 1978, Superman: The Movie was the first modern comic book movie…and it’s still one of the best! Director Richard Donner skillfully brought the Man of Steel to movie screens in a whiz bang adventure that starred the late, great Christopher Reeve (still and always the best Superman) as the Last Son of Krypton. Posing as bumbling Daily Planet reporter Clark Kent, Superman falls for acerbic ace writer Lois Lane (a scene-stealing Margot Kidder) while trying to halt a deadly plan by notorious criminal Lex Luthor (played with scenery-chewing aplomb by Gene Hackman) to kickstart an earthquake that could kill millions.

A visually stunning masterpiece whose tagline accurately predicted that “you’ll believe a man could fly” is a defining example of the power of comic book movies as pop cinema. This is an effort in which all of the pieces — the engaging story, John Williams‘ unforgettable score, masterful supporting performances from the likes of Marlon Brando and Jackie Cooper — came together perfectly to pay tribute to the source material while still standing on it’s own (or should that be flying on its own?) as superb cinematic experience. Can you read my mind? Because I’m thinking it’s time to watch this classic once more.