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Zack Snyder is tapped to re-launch Superman

Geoff Boucher
Los Angeles Times (MCT)

LOS ANGELES — Zack Snyder, the director of the edgy comic-book films "300" and "Watchmen," will direct the Warner Bros. revival of Superman, the first and most famous costumed superhero of them all.

The 44-year-old Snyder will work side-by-side with producers Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas, the tandem that pulled the Batman character back toward cinematic credibility with the films "Batman Begins" and "The Dark Knight," the latter grossing more than $1 billion at theaters worldwide. David S. Goyer ("Batman Begins") is writing the script and shares the story credit with Nolan.

Snyder has shown a flair for kinetic hyper-reality and, in an interview Monday, he said that in recent days he finds that he "lays awake at night" thinking about the ways to present a Man of Steel who flies.

He declined to talk about story or casting — "He has to be a man ... that's as far as I've gotten" — but did say the film will target a holiday 2012 release.

"I have a fondness for the character and a real desire to understand him and present him to a new audience," Snyder said. "The challenge is huge ... it is a hard character to crack."

The perception that the character may have a bigger past than future may have been reinforced by the solid but unspectacular performance of Bryan Singer's "Superman Returns" in 2006.

Snyder, though, said the concept can still fly. "I think he is viable, yes," the filmmaker said. "He endures. We all want to know, 'How will he come to us now?'"

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60. White Hills - Stop Mute Defeat (Thrill Jockey)

White Hills epic '80s callback Stop Mute Defeat is a determined march against encroaching imperial darkness; their eyes boring into the shadows for danger but they're aware that blinding lights can kill and distort truth. From "Overlord's" dark stomp casting nets for totalitarian warnings to "Attack Mode", which roars in with the tribal certainty that we can survive the madness if we keep our wits, the record is a true and timely win for Dave W. and Ego Sensation. Martin Bisi and the poster band's mysterious but relevant cool make a great team and deliver one of their least psych yet most mind destroying records to date. Much like the first time you heard Joy Division or early Pigface, for example, you'll experience being startled at first before becoming addicted to the band's unique microcosm of dystopia that is simultaneously corrupting and seducing your ears. - Morgan Y. Evans

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Gabin's Maigret lets everyone else emote, sometimes hysterically, until he vents his own anger in the final revelations.

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