and i don't mean pedro! although his return to fenway park as a visiting pitcher tonight was also a highlight. i left my house in the evening and went over to dan and cymara's place to watch the game. i brought along a box of leftover pasta for dinner. although there were a scattering of boos, most of the crowd gave pedro a standing ovation when he came out of the dugout to pitch against his former team. dan said it best when he said it'd be great if it could be a 1-0 game with ortiz hitting a walk-off homerun: we win, pedro wins. unfortunately that wasn't the case tonight, as pedro didn't have his stuff, and his former teammates (and some new faces) knocked in runs after runs off of him. by the time dan and i left to go pick up elias and amanda, the score was already 8-1.

the four of us left around 8:30 in dan's new car heading north towards the town of reading to catch the 10:10pm showing of superman returns at the jordan's furniture imax theater. we figured it'd take 30 minutes to get there but we actually arrived earlier than expected. after first walking through the gauntlet of furniture displays, we found the entrance to the theater. after picking up our reserved online tickets and receiving our elton john style 3D glasses, we waited in line. there were at least 4 people dressed up as superman (one girl wore a superman t-shirt with a red shrug) - one of them even has a glowing green kryptonite prop. after about an hour of waiting, they let us all in.

i've been to the science museum imax and the aquarium imax, but this was my first time at the jordan's. the screen was big (like all imax screens) but it was wider than it was tall, and angle of the seats wasn't as steep as in other imax theatres. it was a sold out show as the usher on the microphone kept reminding us to scooch inwards and fill any empty seats.

who doesn't love superman? spiderman is motivated by the guilt of his uncle's death and wears a mask when fighting crime. likewise with batman, who's a brooding millionaire with a vigilante complex and doesn't have superhero powers but instead relies on his cool gadgets. but superman? superman is the real deal. he's got nothing to hide, polite all the time, just a nice guy who helps people out in need. even when he gets angry it's still very civil. in superman returns the man of steel has disappeared for 5 years. people have moved on and all but forgotten about him - until he comes back, and then people wonder how they could've ever lived without him. the action sequence when superman makes his first appearance is glorious, especially if you watch it in imax 3D! coupled with the john williams' score, it'll give you goosebumps. with the return of superman it also means the reemergence of his alter ego, clark kent, who gets his old job back at the daily planet, where he learns that lois lane - superman's true love - has a little boy and a steady boyfriend. to add insult to injury, lois lane seems to be the vanguard in the "who needs superman?" movement, even winning a pulitzer prize for a recent article on that very topic. the old villian is back too in the form of lex luthor, who engineers a plot to once again take over the world - at least become the richest real estate agent in history. i think brandon routh is okay in the role - he has a likeable face - but for me christopher reeve will forever be superman. kate bosworth is very easy on the eyes but her lois lane is younger and nicer - unlike the margot kidder lois lane, who is a caustic bitch (husky voice and all) you'd be afraid to tango with, day or night. kevin spacey is okay as lex luthor, the performance is kind of hammy but not so much that it overshadows the performances of routh and bosworth. once again, james marsden plays the cuckolded boyfriend - in x-men he played cyclops who's girlfriend jean grey gets stolen by wolverine, and in this movie, well, there's superman, and how can anyone say no to superman? this movie represents one of the new generation of comic book superhero films, where it's not so much about the action as it is about the story, like they've learned over the years that what makes a great movie isn't really the special effects but more the character development and the details behind the super abilities. classify superman returns as a summer action blockbuster, yes, but also classify it as a romance, and a tragic one at that. there's a scene where superman secretly follows lois lane home at night (some would call this stalking), and with x-ray vision he witnesses her domestic bliss, with her little boy and her boyfriend, and you feel his pain and his loneliness as he flies up into earth's orbit. and you're thinking, "oh man, is superman going to leave again?" because that's what i'd do, but no, not superman, he hears the troubles happening in the world, and he flies back down and starts saving people. there's also something almost religious with the whole superman myth, and a few scenes in the movie hints at it - which is great, because i think it's going to play well in red states and blue states, as well as it should, since the message of superman is almost universal, transcending class, gender, race, age, and nationality. if there's one movie that shouldn't be missed this summer, this is it. i may just have to see it a second time.

the movie was long, and we didn't get out until almost 1am. dan dropped off elias and amanda, then i got a ride back home.