June 10, 2013 Slideshows

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Why Superman Movies Matter More Than the Comic Books 

Your idea of Superman -- by which I mean the conception of him that floats in the cultural ether -- is simpler and cleaner than the internalized idea of Superman by comic book nerds. Your idea of Superman was shaped, overwhelmingly, by the movies. Read the full Superman story by Glen Weldon.

Read our full Man of Steel movie review.
© 1978 - Warner Bros. All rights reserved.
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Superman: The Movie (1978)

What it's about: Your basic bildungsroman of steel, divided into three tonally distinct acts: origin story (John Ford epic); first adventures (screwball comedy); climactic confrontation

© 1981 - Warner Bros. All rights reserved.
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Superman II (1980)

What it's about: Just as a trio of Kryptonian super-villains in fetish gear arrive on Earth, the Man of Steel gives up his powers to get his super-freak on with Lois. Basically: You will believe

© 1983 - Warner Bros. All rights reserved.
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Superman III (1983)

What it's about: Richard Pryor is a computer programmer who invents synthetic kryptonite that (eventually) splits the Man of Steel into an evil Superman and a good Clark Kent.

© 1987 - Warner Bros. All rights reserved.
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Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987)

What it's about: Superman decides to rid the world of nuclear weapons, just as Lex Luthor creates an evil super-powered being who sports a blond mullet and a gold lamŽ

© 2005 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.
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Superman Returns (2006)

What it's about: Superman returns to Earth after five years away to find that Lois and the rest of Metropolis have moved on. Also, Luthor's got a real-estate scheme. Yes, another one

Photo by Clay Enos – © 2013 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Legendary Pictures Funding, LLC
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Man of Steel (2013)

What it's about: Origin story, first adventures, Kryptonian villains. Once more, with feeling.

Best bits, anticipated: There's a lot in the trailers to make hardcore fan

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© 1978 - Warner Bros. All rights reserved.
"

Superman: The Movie (1978)

What it's about: Your basic bildungsroman of steel, divided into three tonally distinct acts: origin story (John Ford epic); first adventures (screwball comedy); climactic confrontation

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