Movie Talk -- Man of Steel (2013)
Man of Steel begins with a birth, while a world dies. The camera goes in and out of focus on the mother's face. Cal-el, the child that is to become Clark Kent, aka Superman, is the first live-born child on Krypton in 1000 years.
In the next scene, the father Jor-el (played by Russel Crowe) goes to the leading council of Krypton and requests the Codex, an object that has the DNA of all future Kryptonians encoded into it. While there, General Zod enters. He shoots the leader of the council with a deadly blast, saying,
these lawmakers with their endless debates have led Krypton to ruin.
Jor-el escapes Zod's soldiers and steals the Codex from the Genesis Chamber. Soon after, he is killed by Zod, but only after sending the child Cal-el with the Codex into space on the path to Earth.
Zod is an interesting villian. Instead of being portrayed as acting evil due to some inner psychological wrongness or twistedness, he is shown to be driven by the purpose for which his society created him. In his own words:
I exist only to protect Krypton. That is the sole purpose for which I was born. And every action I take, no matter how violent or how cruel, is for the greater good of my people.
On the other hand, Clark Kent is raised among humans. The movie goes to great lengths to show the psychological turmoil and trauma that the experience of his "superpowers" give him. He wants to be a regular person, but he is called to help others when the occasion requires.
It is Clark's human father (played by Kevin Costner) who instills in Clark a sense of societal purpose for his superhuman gifts. He even gives his life to protect Clark's secret, becuz he believes the people of Earth are not yet ready.
I'm a big fan of this movie, and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys action flicks. Yes you do get a showdown between Superman and General Zod with the future of planet earth on the line. It's worth it.