Superman II

Superman II

Synopsis of Movie

“Son of Jor-El, kneel before Zod!”

Well, wasn’t this a pleasant surprise? After several production problems and one director swap, Superman II ended up every bit as fun and charming as the first film, perhaps more so. Original plans had called for Richard Donner to direct both Superman and its sequel at the same time, but things didn’t play out that way. Richard Lester stepped in as director, and (using much of Donner’s footage) completed the film.

The story of this episode was set up in the first, when Jor-El banished a trio of Kryptonian villains to the Phantom Zone. As Superman II opens, Lois Lane is in Paris covering a terrorist takeover of the Eiffel Tower. When the plucky reporter tries to sneak in for a closer look and an interview, she gets taken a bit too close to the action. Superman swoops in to save the day, rescuing Lois and flinging the terrorists’ nuclear weapon into outer space. Unfortunately, the space detonation shatters the Phantom Zone, freeing General Zod, Ursa and the mute Non. The trio flies to earth’s moon, where they discover they possess the same powers as Superman himself.

Back on earth, Lois and Clark take a Daily Planet-funded trip to Niagara Falls, posing as honeymooners. Lois, ever the keen reporter, begins to suspect that Clark Kent and Superman may be one and the same. Clark convinces her otherwise, but a hotel room slip-up exposes his secret identity. Superman flies Lois out to his icy Fortress of Solitude, where he explains his past. Overtaken by his love for Lois, Superman undergoes a special treatment to become an ordinary man.

Meanwhile, Zod and cronies have come to earth to claim it as their own. Lois and Clark travel back to a roadside bar, where Clark gets his first taste of human pain. On television, Clark sees Zod’s hostile takeover of the planet and his demand to see Superman, the son of Jor-El. Clark knows he must regain his powers, despite his personal wants. He does so, flying in for a thunderous battle across Metropolis and into the frozen Arctic.

Terrence Stamp, Sarah Douglas and Jack O’Halloran played the three Kryptonian baddies, with the rest of the cast from the first film reprising their roles (minus Marlon Brando). Gene Hackman also returned as Lex Luthor, playing up to Zod and his associates with a promise of delivering Superman. The film was another blockbuster, solidifying the Man of Steel’s place in the pop culture firmament. Two more sequels followed in 1983 and 1987.

Movie Release History

1978 - Superman
1980 - Superman II
1983 - Superman III
1987 - Superman IV: The Quest for Peace

Movie Sub Categories

live-action
sci-fi/fantasy
action/adventure

Movie Studio

Warner Bros.

Cast

Lex Luthor Gene Hackman
Superman/Clark Kent Christopher Reeve
Otis Ned Beatty
Perry White Jackie Cooper
Ursa Sarah Douglas
Lois Lane Margot Kidder
Non Jack O'Halloran
Eve Teschmacher Valerie Perrine
Lara Susannah York
Sheriff Clifton James
The President E.G. Marshall
Jimmy Olsen Marc McClure
General Zod Terence Stamp
Leueen Leueen Willoughby
Alice Robin Pappas

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