Man of Steel came out on blu-ray last week in various combo packages and bundles for the legions of Superman fans to enjoy. I picked up the 3D blu-ray combo pack that includes the 3D version of the film, the 2D version of the film, a special features disc, the DVD version of the film, and finally a digital copy of the film. For less than $30 the bundle is definitely a deal as it packs hours of special features, and multiple versions of Man of Steel to watch nearly anywhere on any device. Obviously the movie is great, or I wouldn’t have picked it up (original review), but the true reason to own Man of Steel on blu-ray/DVD is for its awesome bonus content contained in its special features sections.
Man of Steel blu-ray special features
It has been quite some time since a blu-ray has been released that packed special feature content worth watching. Quite frankly, the last time I really enjoyed watching a blu-ray or DVD’s special features is when I first sat down with Peter Jackson’s LOTR trilogy to painstakingly watch all of its information filled appendices. Since then many films have skimped on the special features that get included with its home release, but that’s not the case with Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel.
Regardless of which package you buy, there will be special features loaded with the Man of Steel movie disc, as well as a stand alone special features disc containing even more behind the scenes action. The featurettes included on the movie disc range from an introspective look at the Superman franchise and its characters, to an in-depth look at the training process the actors had to go through to both look the part for their roles, and to get ready for the film’s grueling stunts.
The look back at the Superman franchise is a great little historical study of the character, and many faces behind DC Comics’ Superman comic book run made appearances to share their insights on the world’s first comic book character. The cast and crew of Man of Steel also gave their take on the characters they were tasked with bringing to life in Snyder’s rendition of Superman. Listening to Snyder and David S. Goyer talk about the character and how they changed his backstory a bit for Man of Steel is worth experiencing for any Superman fan, and the likes of Geoff Johns chiming in on the subject give the featurette even more fan service.
The stunt focused featurette, “All Out Action,” which features the training regimens of Henry Cavill, Michael Shannon and Antje Traue, is my personal favorite. This extra long behind the scenes look at the stunts and fitness routines that the stars of Man of Steel had to endure is packed full of film making action. Watching the actors being put through the grinder really helps to make you appreciate the physical changes they all went through to bring their characters to life in a believable fashion. You can literally watch Henry Cavill transform from a fit actor to the bulky, yet chiseled Clark Kent he played in Man of Steel. What’s even more interesting is all of the stunt work that went into Man of Steel’s fight scenes and flying mechanics. If you love stunts and the film making process, then you’ll surely appreciate the “All Out Action” featurette included on the Man of Steel blu-ray disc.
The last featurette contained on the main Man of Steel blu-ray disc revolves around the visual design of the film. The actor who played the young Clark Kent interviews the film’s visual director about some of the more difficult special effects to pull off, as well as some of the design choices that were made for the Krypton sections of the film.
Finally, there’s also an animated short to celebrate Superman’s 75th anniversary on the main disc that you can watch below. Hobbit fans can also get a sneak peek at some of Peter Jackson’s locations for his Hobbit trilogy in Man of Steel’s special features.
The best part about the Man of Steel’s blu-ray special features is the fact that they trickled over to a whole other disc. This special-features-only disc contains a faux-documentary about the planet Krypton that feels like a show you’d watch on Discovery or The History Channel, but its real gem is the “Journey of Discovery: Creating Man of Steel” featurette. This featurette allows you to watch the movie alongside the cast and crew to get the definitive behind the scenes look at the filming process that went into making Man of Steel. While the movie plays, various cast and crew interviews are displayed alongside it as pop-ups to supplement what you’re seeing on screen. Everything from the special effects to the stunts gets highlighted in real time as you watch scenes from Man of Steel play out. This style of featurette allows you to get a very detailed understanding about what goes into each and every scene during the filming process to ensure the best possible final result. Fans of film making in general will surely appreciate this comprehensive look into making one of 2013’s most ambitious films.
Man of Steel blu-ray visual quality
The 3D version of Man of Steel on blu-ray offered some great depth, and provided a better 3D feel than the theater version. Some of the special effects stand out due to the fact that the picture is much clearer, but overall I thought the 3D conversion for home use worked quite well. I definitely didn’t lose focus during the heavy action sequences like I did while watching it on the big screen, so if you’re one of the few remaining fans of 3D movies, Man of Steel will make a great addition to your home collection.
The 2D version also looks sharp, but I did notice that some of the colors looked slightly washed out. A few scenes seemed very bright, but overall the picture looked great and did Snyder and his team justice.
The Man of Steel 3D blu-ray combo package is chock-full of Superman goodness that DC Comics fans will surely enjoy. Snyder has managed to make blu-ray/DVD special feature feel relevant again with over 4 hours of bonus content, 2.5 of which is the full movie complete with behind the scenes pop-up featurettes to further flesh out the film making process. The HD visuals look clean and crisp, the 3D offers depth without sacrificing clarity, and the sound will rock your home theater system if you have one. If you loved Man of Steel, then you’ll surely enjoy its home theater offerings.
Make sure to pick up a copy today!