Book Reviews - Movie Novelizations
Superman IIIWriter: William Kotzwinkle
Screenplay by: David Newman and Leslie Newman
Published by: Warner Books (June 1983)
Reviewed by: Aaron Thall
Clark Kent is growing frustrated with his need to hold back in his secret identity. Through a chaotic morning both as himself and as Superman, he wishes he could just cut loose.
At the same time, a computer expert and reformed criminal named Gus Gorman is growing increasingly dissatisfied with his deadend job, and uses his programming skills to transfer every rounded-down half penny from the rest of the company's paychecks to his own account. This action draws the attention of his boss, Ross Webster, a humanitarian hiding a megalomaniacal and sadistic persona. Webster gives Gus the option of helping him destroy Columbia's coffee been crop, or going to jail.
Clark soon goes home to Smallville for a school reunion, stopping along the way to save countless people from a potentially deadly chemical fire. Upon his arrival, he renews ties with his high school romance, Lana Lang, but, as Superman, he must save Lana's son from a runaway thresher. This act gets Superman summoned to the boy's upcoming birthday party.
Webster's plan is put into effect, hijacking a sattelite and affecting Columbia's weather. Superman saves the crops, and draws Webster's ire. Hearing of Superman's upcoming trip to Smallville, he has Gus use the sattelite to analyze debris from Krypton so they can make synthetic Kryptonite.
The plan doesn't go according to plan. Instead of killing Superman, the false Kryptonite turns him uncaring, selfish, and almost evil. As Superman works hard to destroy his own reputation, Webster prepares to take over the world by controlling its oil.
But Gus's design for a new super computer offers Webster even more power than an oil monopoly could.
With Superman not himself, things seem grim. Now only two things can save the world... A criminal's conscience, and the faith of a young boy in his hero. But Superman's greatest challenge will be a battle for his own soul...
To save himself and the world, Clark Kent will have to destroy his alter ego.
Story - 4: Obviously, as a movie adaption, the novel must work with what it's given, in this case, the plot and script for the less-than-stellar Superman III. Still, this novelization does a good job of getting the story across, thankfully downplaying some of Gus's goofier moments from the film. While there are no serious deviations from the film, this novel doesn't tread new ground, either. But it does the job well.
Cover Art - 4: It's just the poster for the movie with some bonus text. Does the job, happens in the book. But you can see Christopher Reeve's eyes saying "Why did they make me do this?" And that hurts it just a little.
Book ReviewsComic Book Novelizations:
- The Gospel According to the World's Greatest Superhero
- The Man From Krypton
- The Original Encyclopedia of Comic Book Heroes - Volume 3: Superman
- Superman on Film, Television, Radio and Broadway
- Beyond Lois Lane
- The DC Comics Action Figure Archive
- Superman vs. Hollywood
- Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman
- Flights of Fantasy: The Unauthorized but True Story of Radio & TV's Adventures of Superman by Michael J. Hayde
- Our Hero: Superman on Earth by Tom De Haven
- Superman On Earth: Reflections of a Fan by Gary D. Robinson
- DC Super Heroes: The Ultimate Pop-Up Book by Matthew Reinhart
- The True Adventures of the World's Greatest Stuntman by Vic Armstrong
- The Ages of Superman: Essays on the Man of Steel in Changing Times
- Superman: The High-Flying History of America's Most Enduring Hero by Larry Tye
- Superman is an Arab by Joumana Haddad
- Superman is Jewish? by Harry Brod
- 100 Things Superman Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die by Joseph McCabe
- Superman: The Persistence of an American Icon by Ian Gordon
- DC: Women of Action by Shea Fontana
- Superman: Last Son of Krypton
- Superman: Miracle Monday
- The Further Adventures of Superman
- It's Superman! by Tom De Haven
- DC Universe: Last Sons
- DC Universe: Trail of Time
- Last Days of Krypton by Kevin J. Anderson
- Enemies & Allies by Kevin J. Anderson
- DC Super-Pets! by Picture Window Books
- Dear Justice League by Michael Northrop
- Fallout (Lois Lane) by Gwenda Bond
- Double Down (Lois Lane) by Gwenda Bond
- Triple Threat (Lois Lane) by Gwenda Bond
- Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt De La Pena
- Smallville: Strange Visitors
- Smallville: Dragon
- Smallville: Hauntings
- Smallville: Whodunnit
- Smallville: Shadows
- Smallville: Silence
- Smallville: Curse
- Smallville: City
- Smallville: Arrival
- Smallville: See No Evil
- Smallville: Flight
- Smallville: Animal Rage
- Smallville: Speed
- Smallville: Buried Secrets
- Smallville: Greed
- Smallville: Temptation
- Smallville: Sparks
- JLA: Batman - The Stone King
- JLA: Wonder Woman - Mythos
- JLA: The Flash - Stop Motion
- JLA: JLA - Exterminators
- JLA: Green Lantern - Hero's Quest
- JLA: Superman - The Never-Ending Battle
- Superman Returns: Strange Visitor
- Superman Returns: Novelization
- Superman Returns: Coming Home
- Superman Returns: Earthquake in Metropolis!
- Superman Returns: I am Superman!
- Superman Returns: Be A Hero!
- Superman Returns: Thank You, Superman!
- Superman Returns: The Movie Storybook
- Superman Returns: The Visual Guide
- Superman Returns: The Official Movie Guide