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BEN AFFLECK AS GEORGE REEVES AS SUPERMAN IN HOLLYWOODLAND

year: 2006 cast: Ben Affleck, Adrien Brody, Diane Lane, Kathleen Robertson, Lois Smith rating: ***
For all Dark Knight fans furious over the casting of Ben Affleck in the upcoming BATMAN VS SUPERMAN, he did convincingly play a superhero, or rather, an actor playing a superhero, with style and finesse…

So put your DAREDEVIL phobia aside and check out HOLLYWOODLAND, a biopic combined with Film Noir about actor George Reeves, star of the original SUPERMAN television show and who may or may not have committed suicide, giving Affleck the chance of, at that time, returning to indie form after bombing as a big box office superstar…

At one point, before his directorial/starring successes with THE TOWN and the Oscar winning ARGO, Affleck was no longer allowed to play in the A-list reindeer games...
"I don't mind the transformation, but I always lose a contact lens."
Enter the struggling, melancholy Reeves, a square-jawed character actor whose most prominent role was a brief scene in GONE WITH THE WIND. Like anyone in the biz, he desperately yearned for a game-changing cinematic opportunity, and finally landed a part he didn’t want – as Clark Kent, the mild-mannered newspaper reporter who is really, beneath a stiff suit and horn-rimmed glasses, the “greatest” superhero of them all.

The best scenes have Reeves conflicted with the show's success, having to appease unpredictable women while keeping a good image for the children who worship him. But since the story goes back and forth in time, much of the film centers on rogue private eye/gumshoe Louis Simo...
Private Dick Adrien Brody confidently questions Kathleen Robertson
A sleek, manipulative Adrian Brody... who's told the world doesn’t need any more Ralph Meeker types  right off the bat... is a pretty good snoop, but his character is much too convinced – way early on – that Reeves was murdered by his fiancĂ© rather than a self-inflicting gun shot, making him more of a conspiracy theory mouthpiece than an ambiguous pawn gathering clues.

Particular scenes involving Simo shrugging from one location to the next, in the usual Noir fashion, tend to drag in this entertaining but overlong project. Making the sporadic backstory about George Reeves and his fledgling career, even when he was on top of the world, that much better.
Superman with the legs of Mr Fantastic
"No one punches a horse in this town... Take that, Mongo!"
"Able to leap tall... wooden fences in a single bound!"
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