Up, Up And Awayyyy…

I fly to Wellington tomorrow. Tonight my friend Paul is coming round to cut and dye my hair (in his words, he’s going to “blonde me up like a teenage Jezebel”, which has got me rather worried) and I really hope I get a good night’s sleep, something I haven’t managed to do all week because of the heatwave we’re having at the moment. It’s been so hot I’ve had to unplug every single electrical item in my flat in case it overheats, and I can only watch TV if there’s a fan blowing on it to cool it down. Isn’t that madness?

But it’s winter in New Zealand right now. Oh, the bliss!

I’m a wee bit excited.

Something else that’s had me excited this week: Superman Returns. I saw it London’s IMAX cinema on Tuesday night (sitting two seats from Shaun Of The Dead director Edgar Wright, she says, shamelessly namedropping). Twenty minutes of the movie were in 3-D, so we had to put on the most enormous 3-D glasses whenever a symbol flashed up on the screen and then remove them when it flashed again – it was like watching a 1950s B-movie at a drive-in and was utterly hilarious. I’m still not convinced about 3-D, but it was certainly an “immersive experience”, as the IMAX press notes pointed out!

The biggest screen in the UK and the novelty of 3-D only enhanced the fact that Superman Returns is beautifully, wonderfully, amazingly good. I’ve done nothing but whinge and gripe for two years that Brandon Routh was miscast and Bryan Singer must have lost his touch, but now I apologise to them both. I’d knock on their front doors and tell them if I could; instead, I’ll just say sorry on this blog. I was wrong, wrong, WRONG!

The film is great, but Brandon Routh is extraordinary. I sat down expecting to hate him and instead I fell in love. Not in my usual, “He’s a sexy man, therefore I fancy him!” kind of way, but in a completely un-sexual, “He’s really Superman!” way. Superman was the first film I ever loved as a child and it was the first thing I kept on videotape and watched over and over and over (this was back in the early ’80s, when nobody owned movies like they do today). Christopher Reeve’s Superman is one of the most iconic figures in my life, a character I love so much I can’t even put it into words. That’s why I hated Routh when he was cast: because he wasn’t Reeve. I was horribly prejudiced, I’ll admit it. I’m so, so sorry…

Because Routh IS Reeve. He’s so like him that there are moments in Superman Returns when you feel the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. He’s a perfect geeky, bumbling Clark Kent. His Superman is noble and majestic, straight-faced and warm. And yet Routh’s brought his own presence to the role, too, so it’s not an homage, he’s just… well, he’s Superman. What else can I say? The Man of Steel is back.

Halfway through Superman Returns I realised Singer had achieved the impossible: he brought my childhood back to life. You know how my previous few blog entries have been full of me saying, “I’m so happy!” Forget all that. THIS is real happiness. Superman is back, and he’s MY Superman, too.

I really hope they show the movie on the plane to New Zealand.

Even though there’s a nasty plane crash in it.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I wish Supes was real.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Up, Up And Awayyyy…

  1. Lília Visser

    Hi Jayne

    Have a nice trip to New Zealand. My wife and I hope to go there on a holiday some day…
    But er, you know that Hobbits don’t really live there, right? I remember a certain SFX staffer losing herself with a Hobbit
    on stage once, and I wonder if we should warn the people there about the imminent arrival of a blonde serial Hobbit-hugger….
    I don’t envy you about the flight there though! Flying to Rio takes about 10-12 hours, and I am always dreading that. Immagine flying for a whole day….!
    Was there really no possibility to add a few days and have a little vacation?
    But to be honest, for me ships beat planes anytime. When we do a weekend trip to London, I always take the ferry. It may take a bit longer, but the holiday-sensation starts the moment I step aboard, while with planes, it starts once we have arrived and can depart…
    Can you babysit our babygirl Jasmijn so we can see the “Boyscout from Metropolis”
    (not my words, but spoken by a certain dark guy in Gotham) return?
    My wife and I saw the trailer when we had our semi-annual cinema-evening (it’s hard to find a babysitter), and we were interested.
    But I still prefer his cousin Kara!

    Anyway, enjoy your trip, and I am sure there will be Jayne-stories to tell once you come back.
    Or should we just watch CNN…?

    Dutch Ruud

    PeeEs
    With the new haircolour, will you then be called the Flexible-haired vixen etc….?

  2. Kikishua

    I’m guessing if it’s Wellington, it’s Miramar. Lived there briefly but ne’er saw any hobbits or elves. Loved it though! Lucky you. Save up and go back for a proper holiday – and stop by Mount Bruce.

  3. Jayne Nelson

    Thanks for your comments – as you can see from my latest missive, New Zealand is but a distant dream. Ho hum.

    You’re probably right about the Hobbits, though, Ruud. Someone probably saw my name on a flight manifest, decided I was a hugging risk… and got the trip cancelled. I think it’s all a big conspiracy myself!

  4. Ionaonie

    Having read both your column in SFX and your blog, I just wanted to say how relieved I am that someone loved the film as much as I did.

    I still can’t believe that it got mixed reviews and that people just didn’t *get* the film it was being.

    I’ve seen it 3 times now and I still get the same shivers, goosebumps, tears and laughter that I did the first time I watched it.

    As you said, for me, Christopher Reeve was Superman – all the others, while fun, were just pale imitations. Routh, on the other had, is amazing. I fell instantly in love with his portayal of Clark/Superman/Kar-El.

    Nice name dropping, by the way. I’m not at all jealous, honest.

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