After Superman Returns (2006) fell flat at the box office, Warner Bros. made the decision to reboot the Superman film franchise and cast Henry Cavill in the title role. Like Superman: The Movie decades before, Man of Steel begins on the doomed planet Krypton, where Jor-El has learned of the planet’s imminent destruction and has his infant son Kal-El sent away in a small rocket ship shortly before the planet explodes.
Before he is sent away, however, Jor-El takes steps to infuse the genetic codes of Krypton into Kal-El’s DNA (codes that are also sought by General Zod, a former friend of Jor-El). Growing up on Earth, Kal-El, now living under the name Clark Kent, wanders the country seeking a purpose in life after his foster father is killed in a tornado (he’d forbidden Clark to use his powers to save him).
Clark is forced into action when General Zod and his compatriots escape the Phantom Zone and land on Earth, around the same time that Clark enters a Kryptonian scout ship discovered in the Arctic. Inside, Clark finds an AI of his real father, Jor-El, who gives him a Kryptonian uniform bearing the family symbol. Meanwhile, Zod intends to terraform Earth into a new Krypton (which would kill most if not all of Earth’s human inhabitants) and Clark must stop him before it’s too late.
As I remember it, this film got mixed reviews, and was heavily criticized for the scene where Superman kills General Zod.
The music for Man of Steel was created by veteran composer Hans Zimmer, who had initially denied rumors that he would be scoring the film. To make sure that Man of Steel stood out from previous Superman films, Zimmer did not use John Williams’ iconic “Superman March” in any way, instead creating his own original themes for the character. The five links I’ve located concern the score in general (top link) and how the various instrumental parts were devised for the score (two for the percussion and two for the strings).
I still prefer Christopher Reeve’s interpretation of Superman (and the “Superman March” will always be a favorite piece of mine), but I’ve also heard that Henry Cavill has done a good job in the role. I hope, therefore, that you enjoy listening to Hans Zimmer talking about the score for Man of Steel.
If you’d like to learn more about the film scores of Hans Zimmer, see here
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*poster image is the property of Warner Bros. Pictures