The Superman Motion Picture Anthology, 1978-2006 [Blu-ray]
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Superman The Movie
Superman The Movie: Expanded Edition
Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut
Superman IV: The Quest for Peace
Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut-The Richard Donner cut of Superman II is an infamous legend come to life. Director Donner shot most of the sequel at the same time as his first blockbuster film, but somewhere along the line, the producers and studio lost confidence and brought in Richard Lester (The Three Musketeers) to rework the film, and receive sole credit. For years fans speculated on how different the final film was from Donner's original until an underground copy appeared showing a fully formed feature. In an unprecedented move, Warner Brothers officially embraces this alternate version. For those who have not been part of the rumor mill, know that Donner shot all the footage with Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman). You can find blow-by-blow descriptions of what is new/changed elsewhere, but most of the changes deal with Christopher Reeve and Margot Kidder as the comic-book couple. Donner's cut provides alternate scenes for how Lois tests her hunch that Clark is Superman, the moment he reveals his identity, and how Lois unlearns that truth. Thing is, Lester's reshots are stronger, adding weight to the romance between the two, lifting the picture's stature. Lester also added the dandy Eiffel Tower opening. Donner's chief additions are in the Fortress of Solitude, where Marlon Brando returns to teach (Susannah York, as Superman's mom, appears in the Lester cut). The producers cut Brando's footage so they wouldn't have to pay him millions. The Brando/Reeve scenes continue the father/son dynamic of the first film. There is a great lesson in editing--Lester's less is better than Donner's more--when you compare how Kent turns back into Superman after losing his powers. The Donner cut is completely formed but does use some rehearsal footage, new effects, and some pieces shot by Lester. The history of cinema has many of these stories of movies reshot, hijacked, and changed from the original version, but here the underdog wins and Donner gets his chance to change history, even adding a note in the end credits about the use of fur and smoking as regrettable choices of the time.
Director Donner and creative consultant Tom Mankiewicz have a jolly good time revisiting their past on the commentary track. You get a clearer picture of who shot what, but the two have nothing good to say about Lester's edition. Donner doesn't go much into why he was dropped, just a difference of opinion and the need not to pay Brando. He also explains why the déjà vu ending of this edition was used in the first movie and a new ending would have been thought up for part 2. A quick featurette looks at how Michael Thau and a small crew reconstructed the film and compares several scenes from both versions. Also added are additional scenes shot by Donner but not used, most with Hackman. --Doug Thomas
Superman III- Here was a case in which the progenitors of this successful comic-book adaptation figured they had to go in a new direction--and chose the wrong one. For starters, they recruited comedian Richard Pryor, who was the kiss of death for almost every movie he was in except his own concert films. He plays a computer specialist who is hired by a criminal mastermind (Robert Vaughan) to help him take on Superman by exposing him to a new form of Kryptonite: red Kryptonite, which always had unpredictable effects in the comic books. In this film, it splits Superman in two, dividing his good self from his dark side. The special effects had gone about as far as they could, and this movie strains to hold an audience's interest for its full running length. --Marshall Fine
Superman IV: The Quest for Peace-The law of diminishing returns: It's the law--obey it! Someone should have posted that sign on the set of this, the third sequel to the film based on the DC Comics superhero. The "IV" in the title refers to medical supplies needed to resuscitate this anemic retread. This one reportedly was a pet project of actor Christopher Reeve, whose career seemed to flounder whenever he tried a role minus the blue underwear and red cape. Before agreeing to don the suit one more time, he insisted on a script that preached nuclear disarmament. So, in this film, Superman rounds up all the missiles and warheads and flings them into outer space. Which still leaves him to contend with Lex Luthor, who has a secret weapon: Nuclear Man. Yawn. Having pushed the envelope of special effects in the first film, it seemed as if the filmmakers simply stopped trying with this one. --Marshall Fine
Superman Returns-If Richard Donner's 1978 feature film Superman: The Movie made us believe a man could fly, Bryan Singer's 2006 follow-up, Superman Returns, lets us remember that a superhero movie can make our spirits soar. Superman (played by newcomer Brandon Routh) comes back to Earth after a futile five-year search for his destroyed home planet of Krypton. As alter ego Clark Kent, he's eager to return to his job at the Daily Planet and to see Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth). Lois, however, has moved on: she now has a fiancé (James Marsden), a son (Tristan Leabu), and a Pulitzer Prize for her article entitled "Why the World Doesn't Need Superman." On top of this emotional curveball, his old archrival Lex Luthor (Kevin Spacey) is plotting the biggest land grab in history.
Singer, who made a strong impression among comic-book fans for his work on the X-Men franchise and directed Spacey in The Usual Suspects, brings both a fresh eye and a sense of respect to the world's oldest superhero. He borrows John Williams's great theme music and Marlon Brando's voice as Jor-El, and the story (penned by Singer's X-Men collaborators Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris) is a sort-of-sequel to the first two films in the franchise (choosing to ignore that the third and fourth movies ever happened). The humorous and romantic elements give the movie a heart, Singer's art-deco Metropolis is often breathtaking, and the special effects are elegant and spectacular, particularly an early airplane-disaster set-piece. Of the cast, Routh is excellent as the dual Superman/Clark, Spacey is both droll and vicious as Luthor, and Parker Posey gets the best lines as Luthor's moll Kitty. But at 23, Bosworth seems too young for the five-years-past-grizzled Lois. It's nice to see Noel Neill, Jack Larson (both from the classic Adventures of Superman TV series), and Eva Marie-Saint on the screen as well. Superman Returns is one of those projects that was in development for seemingly forever, but it was worth the wait -- it's the most enjoyable superhero movie since Spider-Man 2 and The Incredibles. --David Horiuchi
Top Customer Reviews
All, and I mean ALL, the special features from the previous dvd set is included in this eight blu ray disc box set. Now maybe someone out there can correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't recall, on the box set dvd or the blu ray, the previous releases of Superman Returns having the deleted scene of Superman returning the barron and destroyed planet Krypton searching for life in his crystal spaceship. I've never seen this five minutes sequence before in my life. I've only seen snippets of it on the theatrical trailers for the film. Well, I got to see it for the first time today. While Returns is no great film, this scene should have been left in. It would've opened the film up more. Even weirder is this scene is completely finished. All the effects are GREAT and finished and polished. I can't believe they cut this scene. Hell, there were even action figures made of Superman's space suit and his ship back in 2006 for a sequence that was never even seen by mainstream film goers. Whatever. All the other deleted scenes and extended cuts are here too. All the films have their commentaries included, except Returns which never had one unfortunately.
Of course some of the special features are repetitive. The commentaries repeat some of the info give in the featurettes and documentaries. Back in 2001 a box set for the first four films was released on dvd.Read more ›
Superman: The Movie - Special Edition sees the birth of a legend as we are introduced to the titular superhero and his Kryptonian origins. Also included is the expanded edition, which features an additional eight minutes of screen time.
This is followed by Superman II - Special Edition in which our boy in blue must do battle with three escaped super criminals bent on destroying the earth. Presented here in both its theatrical and director's cut versions, the latter is expanded by an alternate beginning and ending, as well as 15 minutes of restored footage of Marlon Brando as Jor-El.
In the third instalment in the franchise, Superman III - Deluxe Edition, Superman learns of his Achilles heel when he is exposed to kryptonite.
The penultimate Superman IV - The Quest For Peace sees the Man of Steel take on Nuclear Man, culminating in an explosive showdown of epic proportions.
When the Super One returns to Earth in Superman Returns - Special Edition, he discovers that the woman he loves, Lois Lane, has moved on with her life, and must figure out how to protect a world that has learned to survive without him.
Over 20 Hours of Bonus Features
Featuring the full length You will believe: The cinematic saga of superman ~ Look, up in the sky! The amazing story of superman
George Reeve in Superman and the mole-men
The complete fleischer/famous studios 1940s superman cartoons
Film Maker commentaries
Rare TV Pilot
Disc 1 - Superman the Movie: Original theatrical release.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Superman movies have always been crappy and suck I cannot even stand to watch this terrible acting.Published 4 days ago by A. J. Kellett
This set is amazing. Two versions of Superman the movie, two versions of Superman II. (This is the only way to get the theatrical release of the second one on blu-ray. Read morePublished 17 days ago by Ken Oliver
Received it as expected. Only note was that I did not catch that this edition includes the Richard Donner cut for Superman II. Woops!Published 1 month ago by Brittany Bratt
I would give this a good rating (because the movie itself and the extras are great) but not one single disc is labeled with the title. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Kyle Mallory
A great series for Superman fans. I love Superman and Superman II. Superman III and IV: TQFP is so stupid. Superman Returns is one of the worst of the series. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Ben Bachman
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|UK version vs. USA version||
Yup! I bought Superman Anthology from Amazon UK. At first I'm a little bit annoyed with the age rating logos, and thinking it must be nice to have the US version of sleeve where you can separate the top part and the bottom part. But come to think again, The movie is just great, and with a price... Read More
Dec 18, 2011 by valiantonov | See all 6 posts
|What's the difference between this and Superman Complete Blu-ray...||
The Superman Complete Collection does not have the alternate version of the first movie, the Richard Donner cut of the second movie, or the extra disc of all bonus material. You get some bonus on the discs but not nearly as much. If you just want theatrical versions of the films and don't care... Read More
Feb 3, 2013 by Amazon Customer | See all 2 posts
Superman I-IV have been done from high-definition masters, as has the 2001 "expanded edition" of I. Superman I has the original audio as a secondary track. "The Science of Superman" previously only on on the HD version is now on Blu Ray and "Look! Up in the Sky"... Read More
Jun 7, 2011 by AH-1Z | See all 4 posts
|Extended TV cut of Superman I still not included.||
Jun 25, 2011 by CMZ | See all 7 posts
|Please let the original theatrical audio be on here for superman 1978.||
Um the new cut is way better.
May 31, 2011 by Jonathan Griffith | See all 3 posts
|How do we get Amazon to Update the description?||Be the first to reply|
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