The 12-issue comic-book series, All Star Superman by Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly is my 2nd favorite Superman story, after Superman Vs. Muhammad Ali. So when I heard that Warner Bros was making an animated film based on the series, and that it would be written by Dwayne McDuffie, one of my all-time favorite comic-book writers (R.I.P.), I was greatly looking forward to it. It came out last month, but I only just got it. I kept checking the two Target stores that are near me, to see if they had it, but they didn’t. And I meant to order it from Amazon, but just didn’t get around to it. Then I finally found it at Target, they had it all along. The problem is I was looking in the regular movie section, but it was always in the Kids movie section. Duh. So I picked it up, and just watched it.
Unfortunately, I have to say that it just doesn’t translate that well. I can’t really fault McDuffie, or producer Bruce Timm, they seemed to have tried the best that they could. I think the problem is that the comic-book really wasn’t a typical story that could easily be adapted into a 76-minute feature film. It was a collection of single-issue stories, plus one two-part story, so when they try to put it all together in a film, it feels like it’s rushed and just jumping from one action sequence to another. And some of the best stories were cut completely, like the Superboy flashback story, the adventure on the Bizarro World and the story from All Star Superman #10, where Superman writes his Will and creates a pocket parallel universe in order to see how Earth would get along without him. That issue is one of the greatest single Superman stories of all time. Cutting those stories from this film takes out most of the real “heart” of the series. I think if they wanted to adapt the comic-book, they would have been better off producing it as a 12 episode miniseries. Adapt each issue as a half-hour cartoon, thereby giving it the time it needed to include everything, and then released that as a DVD box-set. Maybe air it on TV first. Sure, it would have cost more and taken longer to make, but it would have served the story better, in my opinion.
Christina Hendricks provides the voice of Lois Lane. I only mention it because it gives me an excuse to post these recent pictures of her:
[…] was also an animated movie but, in my opinion, it just wasn’t that good. But I think that’s a fault of the format, if you were to faithfully […]