Injustice

The 20s are all about figuring out how you can help in the world. There's no more of this inactive bystander nonsense. You are capable of helping, of making a difference and of standing up. So many travesties, tragedies and all the chair in between go down on a daily basis. It doesn't take a Good Samaritan to do something selfless, we all have the ability to be strong, powerful and bring hope to those who need it most. All this injustice - oh hell to the no, justice is about to be served. 

Man of Steel. Period, point blank, end of story. Someone please reconstruct my figurative ovaries because they seem to have exploded. The feels I had, the amount that I just couldn't (like I was physically and emotional incapable) and the awe that was inspired in me was just too much to freaking handle. How can a movie be so perfect? It shouldn't be possible for cinematography to exist that makes a mockery out of everything else. Let me put this review disclaimer right here - proceed with caution, spoilers abound and fanboy man crushes up ahead. I was and still am subliminally obsessed with the whole Superman/Clark Keny/Kal-El mythos (Smallville, Justice League, even  Krypto the superdog - I watched along with all the movies and series). The movie was simply beautiful, the use of the bright white/blue light, the flashback sequences (Dylan Sprayberry aka Young Clark Kent - the fence scene was my everything), the loner jobs, Jor-El kicking ass and pulling a sci-fi James Bond on Krypton for the codex, the spaceship escape, and finally the neck-snapping, heart-stopping, emotional release that was Zod's murder. This movie goes there. Focusing on Superman's humanity - that's the key. When people are not seen as human, that is being othered, and made to be alien - there's no emotional attachment. This movie forges the bond in the most subtle way possible. Henry Cavill is utter perfection in the protagonist role. Charming, humble, while at the same time exuding near god-like power. After watching endless interviews of the cast, I can affirm in real life Henry Cavill might be one of the most genuinely humble people out there, along with all his cast mates. Russell Crowe as Jor-El was brilliant, and Amy Adams as headstrong and ambitious Lois Lane, both stellar performances. I cannot recommend this movie enough, I'm biased but I've found my new all time favorite movie. Well done, Christopher Nolan and Zack Snyder - so much passion and precision and it turned out wonderfully. Screw the critics, this is true cinema, other reviews are a total injustice. 
Dylan Sprayberry (Young Clark Kent) - MAN OF STEEL PREMIERE, NY.So.. Preston took me to see Man of Steel yesterday.AND IT WAS FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC.Henry Cavill is a perfect superman.  & The suit design and entrance is not ridden with stupidity as it normally is.I love the use of negative space & variance in thickness of the different parts of the crest- it helps to abstract it so as to not look like he decided to call himself “Superman” and slapped a big “S” on his chest.  I love that the marking on his chest is explained as the family crest of the House of El, meaning hope, and that his father wore a different version of it himself.  Other families also wore their own crests, or at least the men did, and the “suit” is actually a typical form of garb worn by those on Krypton.  When in battle, generally, they would have actual armor that would attach to/go over this layer.I LOVE THAT HE’S NOT JUST FLYING AROUND IN CRAYOLA-COLORED SPANDEX AND MISPLACED UNDERWEAR.Bravo to you, screenwriters, developers, costume designers, and all of those who worked on making this movie one of, if not the, most non-ridiculous superhero movie ever.




Henry Cavill, Russell Crowe, Amy Adams and Michael Shannon at Taormina Filmfest 2013
What can we learn from Superman (other than hope, love, friendship and morality) how about justice. I'm talking social justice, the big buzz phrase on every college campus. All this diversity mumbo jumbo goes perfectly with this new Superman retelling. First and foremost, even though Superman is an alien, he's easily accepted because he has "white skin privilege" (but he technically isn't white since he's not even from Earth), and he's handsome (according to physical beauty standards dictated by the media which is controlled by white men). Now, the aspect of Superman that explains social justice is the most basic terms is his alienhood. He is in other words "othered" because he is "different." When it comes to any minority identity (that is one that non-dominant or least represented in the American society) being othered is being removed and separated. Different rules apply, treatment on a daily basis is different, and you will always be weird, different, unique (which are not compliments in this context) - meaning not normal. The reason I connect so much to Superman is this humanity thing. Even though he literally is not human, it's his spirit for goodness and wanting to be tolerated (screw that, that's not helpful) accepted, scratch that, embraced for who he is. The thing about racism, sexism, homophobia and all the other oppression inducing nonsense that goes down on a daily basis is that there is a distinction between "us" and "them." The "them" are not seen as human. There is no emotional connection, which is why people are able to dismissively everyday offend, ignore, and oppress people who don't fit the able-bodied straight white male mold. It took me so long to wrap my head around it, but when people are defending their privileges and subsequently refuting your life story (or trying to distance themselves from any sort of involvement in oppression) it's because you're not human, or at least human like "them" (in this case it's acutally "us). When you tell a story about being racially profiled, humiliated in public, or someone throws some serious shade with a microaggression or stereotypical assumption and a person in the "in-crowd" (aka the "us"/normal group) doesn't feel anything - that's what I'm talking about. No emotions, no tears, and no true connection. The only way to stop all this craziness is for people to reconnect with those who have been excluded as human. We are all human beings. Society has created an inner circle of how people are "supposed" to be. Remember that we are all human, even Superman - if you can feel for him (awkward right here because every tag on tumblr and vine of Henry Cavill is people wanting to ravage him) and use empathy to take on what he has gone through, then you can make a difference in this world when it comes to social justice. Man of Steel is correct in saying "People are afraid of what they don't understand" - just because it's different doesn't make it not-normal or inherently wrong. No more injustice!

Here's some articles on white privilege and how to avoid ruining productive social justice conversations: White Privilege Checklist - 28 Common Racist Attitudes
 
The 20s are all about doing something meaningful. We are no more kids where we're not part of the conversation. We have access to resources, knowledge, and are able to take action. We can't sit back and let injustice go on. We're all red caped crusaders in our own very special way. Put your underpants on in the inside, come out from under those thick rimmed glasses, and take off into the sky. Look it's a bird, it's a plane, no it's Superman the injustice league of twenty-something social conscious do-gooders.
“You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you, they will stumble, they will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders.”
My blog post question for the day is ... who is your favorite superhero? Mine will always be Superman, but Green Arrow comes in a close second (I like the Batman billionaire with a sense of humor and lack of brooding attitude). 

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