With global superpowers engaged in an increasingly hostile arms race, Superman leads a crusade to rid the world of nuclear weapons. But Lex Luthor, recently sprung from jail, is declaring war on the Man of Steel and his quest to save the planet. Using a strand of Superman's hair, Luthor synthesizes a powerful ally known as Nuclear Man and ignites an epic battle spanning Earth and space.
**Better than the tedious Superman Returns/Man Of Steel** Bad effects aside, this one is definitely more fun than the _tedious and dull_ Superman Returns and Man Of Steel stuff - an overload of special effects does not make an engaging film. The performances here are all top notch as usual and the plot moved swiftly without taking itself too seriously. The franchise has always been silly - stupid even - especially when we remember that _Richard Donner's Superman had Ned Beatty as the moronic Otis._ The silliness has always been integral to the Superman series.
Filled with cheap gags, really horrible visual effects, a lazy story, a very bad musical score by Alexander Courage, a terrible villain (Nuclear Man), and some tiresome performances by the cast (except for Christopher Reeve), Superman IV: The Quest For Peace is one of the worst films ever made, the one of the worst movie sequels of all time, and the worst Superman film of all time. It is the kryptonite nail in the coffin for the Superman films, and none of the films after this even tried to save the Man Of Steel from his own detriment.
_**The least of the tetralogy due to a slashed budget and the corresponding cheesy F/X**_ Superman (Christopher Reeve) destroys all nuclear warheads on Earth for the sake of world peace, but Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) has discovered a way to make a nuclear-powered thrall from Supes’ DNA and the energy of the Sun. Meanwhile a tycoon & his daughter take over The Daily Planet (Sam Wanamaker & and Mariel Hemingway). “Superman IV: The Quest for Peace” (1987) is the weakest of the quadrilogy because the Salkind family sold the franchise to a Grade B production company, Cannon, and so instead of the healthy $39 million budget of “Superman III” (1983) it was slashed to $17 million (although it was originally supposed to be $36 million), which is apparent in the low-rent opening credits and the non-special effects throughout. Other than that glaring flaw, the main cast returns and the story is decent, augmented by the kick-axx Nuclear Man (Mark Pillow) and the continuation of Clark’s relationship with Lois (Margot Kidder). The first two movies are standout sci-fi motion pictures, despite hailing from the late ’70s, and the third one has worthy themes if you can adjust to the parody tone and cartoonish presence of Richard Pryor (at least his character has a worthy story arc). This one, by contrast, is disappointing due to the second rate vibe. While there are some entertaining elements, the drop in quality is just too noticeable. The film runs 1 hour, 30 minutes, and was shot entirely in England with establishing shots of New York City, The Golden Gate Bridge, The Great Wall of China, etc. GRADE: C