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This time, the Man of Steel has his hands full with a trio of super-powered villains who escape from their Phantom Zone prison (remember the weird flying diamond-shaped mirror that scooped them up from the planet Krypton?) and land on Earth, where all three have powers to rival Superman's own. How does it all come out? With a fabulous duel above the streets of Metropolis, and a startling plot twist that neatly ties in Superman's explosive past. Arch-criminal Lex Luthor plays both ends gleefully against the middle in hopes of a modest reward: Australia.
Miraculously freed from eternal orbit, the three outlaws from Krypton descend to earth, for the ultimate confrontation.
Title: Superman II
Release Date: June 19, 1981
Runtime: 127 mins
All Genres: Action, Adventure, Romance, Sci-Fi
Languages: English, French
Sound: 70 mm 6-Track, Dolby
IMDB Rating: 6.7
Brimstone Pit Rating: 7.7 - (Rate This Horror Movie)
Category: Horror Movies Starting With S
MPAA Rating: PG
Gene Hackman ...Lex Luthor
Christopher Reeve ...Superman / Clark Kent
Ned Beatty ...Otis
Jackie Cooper ...Perry White
Sarah Douglas ...Ursa
Margot Kidder ...Lois Lane
Jack O'Halloran ...Non
Valerie Perrine ...Eve Teschmacher
Susannah york ...Lara
Clifton James ...Sheriff
E.G. Marshall ...The President
Marc McClure ...Jimmy Olsen
Terence Stamp ...General Zod
Leueen Willoughby ...Leueen
Robin Pappas ...Alice
Roger Kemp ...Spokesman
Roger Brierley ...Terrorist #1
Anthony Milner ...Terrorist #2
Richard Griffiths ...Terrorist #3
Melissa Wiltsie ...Nun
Alain Dehay ...Gendarme
Marc Boyle ...C.R.S. Man
Alan Stuart ...Cab Driver
John Ratzenberger ...Controller #1
Shane Rimmer ...Controller #2
John Morton ...Nate
Jim Dowdall ...Boris (as Jim Dowdell)
Angus MacInnes ...Prison Warden (as Angus McInnes)
Antony Sher ...Bell Boy
Elva Mai Hoover ...Mother (as Elva May Hoover)
» [more cast members]
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 1
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 2
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 3
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 4
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 5
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 6
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 7
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 8
Superman II Horror Film Trailer 9
"Pick Up the Pieces"
More Movie Taglines:
- Miraculously freed from eternal orbit, the three outlaws from Krypton descend to earth, for the ultimate confrontation.
- The adventure continues
- The three outlaws from Krypton descend to Earth to confront the Man of Steel in a cosmic battle for world supremacy.
- The Man of Steel meets his match!
- The Man of Steel is back, and better than ever!
- [Arriving on Earth after overhearing some NASA astronauts] General Zod: So this is planet Houston.
Lex Luthor: [to Zod and Company, at the half-wrecked White House] ... Hi! Lex Luthor. [no reaction from the Super Villains] Lex Luthor: LEX LUTHOR! Possibly you've heard the name? the Greatest Criminal Mind on Earth! Ursa: I told you this was a puny planet. [moves menacingly towards Luthor] Lex Luthor: Whoa whoa whoa wait... why don't you get to know me better? [Ursa continues moving towards Luthor] Lex Luthor: WAIT! I can give you anything! The... the... the... the Brass Ring, unlimited freedom to maim and kill! PLUS! Lex Luthor's keen mind, Lex Luthor's savvy, Lex Luthor's school of career guidance... [Ursa begins crushing his hand] General Zod: We already have this without you. You cannot bargain with what you don't have. Lex Luthor: [sucking on his thumb to numb the pain] Oh Great One, what I am bargaining with is what YOU do not have: The Son of Jor-El. General Zod: The Son of Jor-El? Lex Luthor: [confused] I just said that. General Zod: Jor-El? Our jailer? Lex Luthor: [sarcastically] No, Jor-El the BASEBALL PLAYER... [Ursa and Non start moving menacingly towards Luthor] Lex Luthor: Yes, Jor-El your jailer. General Zod: The Son of Jor-El! On this planet! Lex Luthor: Perhaps you know him better by his nom de voyage, or the name he travels under: Superman. General Zod: So THIS is Superman! How do you know of Jor-El? Lex Luthor: Well, Your Excellency, as I explained earlier: I'm about the best there is. General Zod: Revenge! We will kill the son of our jailer! Ursa: Revenge! Lex Luthor: REVENGE! Now we're cooking! General Zod: He flies then? Lex Luthor: Constantly. General Zod: He has powers as we do? Lex Luthor: Certainly. But, oh Magnificent One, he is one, while you are three. [Non growls] Lex Luthor: Or four, if you count him twice! General Zod: Come! We will bring him to his knees! Ursa: Praying! General Zod: Yes, to ME! Lex Luthor: Wait! [the Super Villains turn to face Luthor] Lex Luthor: First you must find him... and Lex Baby is the only one who knows where he is...
General Zod: No! Who else is seeing this? Reporter: Well, with the satellite link up just about everybody, I mean the whole planet. General Zod: The whole planet Houston? Reporter: Earth... The whole planet Earth. General Zod: [pleased] You may continue. Reporter: As the extraordinary story continues... Ursa: [petulantly to Zod] Enough of this! If the whole planet is watching, can we not show them something more interesting? Army Major: Throw down your arms and surrender. This is an order! Ursa: General Zod does not take orders. He gives them.
Ursa: You are master of all you survey. General Zod: [bored] So I was yesterday. And the day before.
President: [on T.V] This is your President. On behalf of my country and in the name of the other leaders of the world with whom I have today consulted, I hereby abdicate all authority and control over this planet to General Zod. Only by following all his directives will the lives of millions be spared... [desperately] President: Superman! Can you hear me? Superman! Where are you... General Zod: Who is this Superman? President: You'll find out and when you do-... General Zod: Come to me, Superman! I defy you! Come and kneel before Zod! Zod!
- Originally, Richard Donner had filmed Superman talking to his father for Superman II (1980), but Marlon Brando sued for (and won) a percentage of the profits of the first film, so the producers had his scenes removed, and they were replaced by those with Superman's mother instead. The lawsuit also resulted in him receiving a share of the proceeds from this movie - even though he doesn't appear. These scenes with Brando appear in Superman II (2006) (V) and can be heard briefly during a scene in Superman Returns (2006)
Tom Mankiewicz was hired to oversee the script originally written by Mario Puzo for the original Superman (1980), which of course was to be made simultaneously with its sequel. Thus, the script had elements of both films in it. Mankiewicz eliminated most of the camp elements that Puzo had inserted in the original draft and went ahead with the filmmakers' decision to keep the religious allusions of the Superman story in the script. Specifically, there are elements of the Second Coming of Christ in the Superman saga ever since it first appeared in comic book form in the 1930s. Among the similarities to the Second Coming are: 1) Jor-El (God) casts out Zod (Satan) from Krypton (Heaven); 2) Jor-El's speech as he and Lara say goodbye to Kal-El "...The son becomes the father and the father the son...."; 3) The ship that brings Kal-El to Earth is in the form of a star (the star of Bethlehem); 4) Kal-El comes to a couple unable to have children "...How we prayed and prayed the good Lord see fit to give us a child...."; 5) Just as there is not much known about Jesus during his middle years, Clark Kent travels into the wilderness to find out who he really was and what he had to do; 6) "...You must live as one of them but always hold in your heart the pride of your special heritage. They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be, they only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you, my only son." There would have been more religious references in the sequel if director Richard Donner would have been allowed to play out the story of Superman's fall and resurrection and his battle with evil in 'Superman II (1980'. Unfortunately, he was fired and replaced by Richard Lester, who did not respect the Superman character or the mythology.
Original director Richard Donner left the production due to a clash with the producers, the Salkinds, over the material.
US-born Director Richard Lester , an American expatriate living in England, claimed he had never heard of the Superman character before being hired to replace original director Richard Donner for the sequel as comic books had not been allowed in his house when he was child. Many critics believe that Lester's lack of understanding of the character of Superman bordered on disrespect, which was most apparent in the next sequel, Superman III (1983), which he directed entirely on his own.
Director Richard Lester was not sympathetic to the epic look that original director Richard Donner had given the original Superman (1978), saying that he did not want to do "the David Lean thing". Imposing his own control over the Superman saga, Lester took advantage of the death of Donner's cinematographer, Oscar-winner Geoffrey Unsworth, to stamp his own look on the sequel. Lester decided to scrap most of Unsworth's footage, which created an epic stateliness through the use of a gliding camera and unique colors for different locations, and hired potboiler director Michael Winner's cinematographer, Robert Paynter, to create a comic book-style that would evoke Superman's roots in comic books. Lester deliberately wanted to break the stylistic "American epic" mold created by Donner and, with Paynter, set out to recreate the look and feel of a comic book. For this reason, Lester did not use his own long-time collaborator, lighting cameraman David Watkin, as Watkin's photographic style was too classical, and thus not adaptable to a comic book aesthetic. Working with his Lester, Paynter and his camera operator Freddie Cooper developed a different type of framing from the original, but one that was ideal for their concept of a comic book film: They replaced Unsworth's gliding camera with horizontal panning and static framing to evoke comic books and comic strips, with their static frames that are crammed with people and objects. Similarly, the composition of shots the trio developed for 'Superman II (1980'. had objects and people crammed into the frame. To further emphasize comic book composition, the action was photographed from one angle, to give the film a desired flatness. (Harkening back to the technique of the early sound era, Lester's films had always been shot with three cameras simultaneously filming the action all at one time, with two cameras for close-ups and one for the long-shot (the establishing shot). Actors do not like this technique as they do not know when their close-ups are being filmed, and must be "on" constantly, rather than saving their best takes for the close-ups. Lester's technique added to the friction on the set caused by Donner's firing, with Margot Kidder particularly disliking Lester as a director.) Paynter's palette consisted of pastel colors to suggest the color of comic books. The theatrical gray skies of Paris, the rainbows of Niagara Falls and the Caribbean colors of St. Lucia were thusly rendered with a comic book look. Whereas Unsworth had given every new destination Superman visits seem like an awe inspiring new discovery, Lester and Paynter showed Superman having as easy access to far off lands, just as he did in the comics. One minute he's in France, the next in Metropolis, and so on, without any second thoughts. Unfortunately, Lester's disdain for Superman as an American epic masked a certain disrespect for the enterprise, and his comic book aesthetic backfired badly with the next sequel, Superman III (1983), which was routinely panned and underperformed at the box office.
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