This summer’s “Man of Steel” may have delivered what I consider to be the best Superman film yet, but that doesn’t mean it has eclipsed what came before it. Namely, there is no denying just how incredible Christopher Reeve is as Superman in Richard Donner’s 1978 film.
There’s a reason that Reeve’s performance as Clark Kent/Superman was for decades considered to be definitive and why some still consider that the case. In order for a performance to become iconic, there needs to be a certain level of immersion.
The actor or actress in question must believe wholeheartedly in not only their character, but the world they inhabit. It’s why Luke Skywalker is such an iconic character and performance despite Mark Hamill not being a very good actor. Hamill believes so very fully in what he’s playing.
And that’s why Reeve is so perfect as Superman. It’s not just that we believe a man can fly, we believe in the reality of who Clark/Superman is. There’s an honesty and sincerity that Reeve projects that is unlike anything we’ve ever gotten from someone playing a superhero.
Not everything works here. The script’s portrayal of Lex Luthor and his scheme and henchmen, is far too silly for my taste, and the time travel finale still bugs me. But overall, this is still one of the best comic book films ever made.
Kryptonite Krispy Treats
There are only two food references in the Superman movie and if you look away for even a second you’ll miss the most important. Clark Kent ate Cheerios as a child. So if you want to be strong and ward off the Kryptonite then eat plenty of Cheerios!
3 tablespoons butter
1 ten and a half ounce bag of miniature marshmallows
5 cups Cheerios cereal
several drops of green food coloring
Grease a 9 by13 pan. In a saucepan over low heat or the microwave, melt the butter and marshmallows, stirring often, until smooth. Add drops of green food coloring until desired color is reached. Immediately stir in cereal until evenly coated. Using buttered back of spoon or hands, press mixture firmly in pan. Allow to cool and cut into bars.
— Christine Gardner, Food Editor