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Reviews & Ratings for
Steel More at IMDbPro »

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28 out of 32 people found the following review useful:

"Well, I'll be dipped in s*** and rolled in breadcrumbs"

Author: The_Movie_Cat from England
28 August 2000

Steel is one of those films where you constantly have to keep telling yourself "this is NOT a TV movie". A cheap, outrageously bad superhero vehicle for the acting... er... talents?... of 7'1 basketball player Shaquille O'Neal.

Commendably, the film does actually have three clear acts, and Steel's emergence, though underplayed, doesn't happen for over forty minutes. In-jokes are a-plenty, as it mentions Batman, Superman, Jerry Maguire ("show me the money!") and three instances of John Irons (O'Neal) having to net basketballs. The final time sees a life-threatening toss of a grenade. A lousy basketball player throughout, Shaq gets to quip "I never make these". Or would you prefer Richard Roundtree as Uncle Joe, who designs Steel's hammer for him? "I did the metalwork," he explains, "I especially like the shaft." Cue lots of double-takes and knowing glances, with Roundtree looking round, hands in the air, proclaiming "what?"

The special effects are reasonable for tv movie land, but, as this is (pinch me, I must be imagining it) a real cinema movie, they're quite cheap. Steel is badly written, contains atrocious dialogue, is poorly acted, shabbily directed and with an overbearing, repetitive musical score. It is, of course, tremendously entertaining.

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21 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

so bad it's good

Author: miguelsanchez69 from NYC
17 March 2004

This is a B-movie classic. The special effects are awful and the acting is worse, but at least it's not boring. As a cinematic experience, it's below par, but as entertainment it's top notch. It's basically like a B-movie, unintentionally hysterical version of Superman (which makes sense, since apparently Steel is based on a DC comic series which was an offshoot of the Superman Funeral for a friend storyline) , except Steel's only discernible superpowers are: being tall, having a metal suit that makes him walk slowly, and uttering unfunny catch phrases that are so bad you have to bust out laughing. This movie is probably the funniest thing I've seen all year. Of course, it's not intended to be funny most of the time when it is.

Watching Shaq "act" is the highlight of the film. I fell out of my chair laughing every time he said something. Shaq's still a better actor than Hulk Hogan though, not that that's saying much. They should give Shaq more movies. Hulk Hogan made a dozen or more, and they were all awful, why not Shaq?

The special effects look like they were made in the 1980s. Bad miniatures and Superman-esque laser effects look pretty silly in this day and age. This adds to the fun factor of the movie though since you'll probably scream "Dear Lord that laser is the same miniature they used in Godzilla in the 60s!".

The plot to the movie isn't horrible, even though it's pretty thin. Basically Steel is a superhero with a secret identity out to save the world from an evil supervillain. Pretty standard superhero fare.

This movie has earned its place in my heart alongside other bad movie classics like "cool as ice" starring vanilla ice. A must-see for bad movie buffs. Some folks who like superhero films might like it too since it's mildly diverting and quick-paced. Those who relish quality cinematic experiences should avoid.

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26 out of 37 people found the following review useful:

I don't know whether to laugh or cry

Author: Anders Åslund ( from Karlstad, Sweden
2 January 2001

Oh man, I don't believe this. Perhaps with the exception of "Barb Wire", I don't think I have watched anything that comes anywhere near this. When I come to think of it, "Barb Wire" is actually better than this, because I could laugh while watching it. This film is so bad it reaches a certain quality of lousiness only reserved for the very worst of bad ideas. I mean - Shaquille O'Niell in a steel suit with a super weapon made from the contents of a lost-and-found at the scrap yard? Please!

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23 out of 33 people found the following review useful:

I've seen Steel and I'll never recover.

Author: BENARES-2 from United States
30 March 1999

I've never seen a movie as bad as this one. A few come close, but none have the power to topple "Steel". First off, when are people going to realize most athletes can't act, ESPECIALLY Shaq?? The effects are not-so-special, and are in fact quite terrible, which is ironic because so is the plot, the acting, and generally everything else in this so-called movie (read : vehicle to make some money off Shaq's name). I think the director and producer deliberately wanted to insult the audience with this tremendous piece of crap.

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20 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

Sure, the acting is bad

Author: btapplegate from indiana
26 March 2004

Sure, the acting is bad, the special effects are amaturish, the direction incompetent, the story sadly changed from the comic book, and the screenwriting lame, lame, lame, but the casting is interesting in a drug induced sort of way. I was hoping that this would be one of those "it's so bad, it's funny" movies", but it was just bad. Please don't watch this fiasco, it will just steal precious moments from your life you can never get back. I beg of you, your brain cells beg of you, just say no. Shaquille O'Neil should be legally barred from acting. Annabeth Gish should be ashamed, Judd Nelson couldn't possibly sink any lower, and poor Richard Roundtree, how the mighty have fallen. I hope the next time I see Shaft, I don't remember seeing this waste of time.

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14 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Superman *still* didn't return.

Author: Spider-Lou from Bristol, CT
11 February 2004

Steel was a character created for DC Comics during the "Death of Superman" storyline. So naturally, based on the lack of movie since Superman IV, the makers of this movie could spin that as Superman as being dead or missing, therefore Steel was created, right? Wrong. It's has no reference to Christopher Reeve's Man of Steel stories, so it sucks.

This "comic book" movie stars the Miami Heat's Shaq as John Henry Irons, a technical/scientific genius (*snicker*) who creates the super armor just to beat lame bad guy Judd Nelson! In doing this, "Steel" becomes one big joke. It's 100% obvious how Shaq was miscast, and once he dons the "armor", looks like he poured glue all over his body and fell into Fred Sanford's junkyard. Peppered with unnecessary inside jokes about Shaq's crappy free throwing, this movie has no value to comic readers or movie lovers. Action scenes had potential, but fell flat with neither creativity or fun. Bad bad bad. Better casting, better written story, better special FX and a tie to Superman would have ensured a blockbuster, but now it's just cannon fodder for comic book fans.

To see the true Steel in motion, look to the 90s Superman cartoon, he looks like the character and is voiced by Michael Dorn( ST: TNG). You'll be happier watching that than this movie.

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13 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

One of the worst movies I've ever seen, and I've seen quite a few.

Author: MovieAddict2016 from UK
19 April 2004

James Berardinelli gave this 2/4 stars - more than he gave "Trees Lounge." I find that hard to believe. This is one of the worst films I have ever seen in my entire lifetime, and I've seen quite a few.

It's yet another comic-book-adaptation based on a series that was unpopular to begin with. Shaq does his Attack as Steel, a superhero who runs around very slow in a heavy metal suit.

Whereas Spidey and Batman, et al, all have their special powers, Steel really just has a bulletproof metal suit - the "wire shooter" is a rip-off of the device used by Michael Keaton in "Batman." It attaches itself to a building and up, up and away he goes! However, the device moves at an astonishingly slow pace. Why didn't the cops just shoot him instead of standing there for over thirty seconds (yes, I counted) watching him pulled up into the air by a thin thread?

No matter. This movie is awful. Not even Richard Roundtree can save it.

And what's with the wheelchair lady?

Why, Bender, why?

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22 out of 36 people found the following review useful:

after Oscar winning KAZAAM, yet another masterpiece

Author: shadow1995 from toronto
3 August 2003

Shaq is an actor in movie with no plot - nothing more to add

OMG, this is so sad, its not even funny; that is why there is a saying that "to each is own" I guess he know joins the list of other talented actor-athletes like Dennis Rodman, Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage - man, I am not even going to attack the movie, because its unfair to tackle crippled opponents

worst waste of time and space in universe since Poly Shore


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10 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Complete waste of a decent premise and a potentially strong character

Author: lemon_magic from Wavy Wheat, Nebraska
7 May 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I finally forced myself to watch as much of this as I could stand when the movie appeared on cable. I tried to find something, anything, to like about this film, but it's simply dreadful.

Why do they insist on putting Shaqille O'Neale in movies? However imposing and charismatic he may be in person, and no matter how entertaining he can be in various short TV commercials, he's a dullard and a lug on film. He's got no range, no gravitas, and he's so odd looking in the context of a 'normal' film world that he is actually rather repellent.

I know, I know - Shaq is a celebrity, and celebrity sells.

Some of the problem is that the director and screenwriter paid millions of dollars to cast a 7 foot 2 inch man in the role of an armored, high tech superhero, and then they threw the premise away on story elements and fight scenes that utterly waste the idea's potential.

The DC superhero "Steel" was incredibly powerful, and resourceful: he could fly via boot jets, he fired big steel spikes from wrist launchers, he could pick up and throw railroad box cars, his armor could withstand mortar bursts and artillery fire, and his 'homing' hammer was the neatest visual gimmick since Captain America's shield.And he had a deeply resonant spiritual side as well - he was a man who was brought back from death itself by Superman and destiny, who took up his armor to fight the good fight in a world that needed heroes more than ever.

Instead of all this great potential appearing on the screen, we get a big doofus with a bulletproof suit who runs around on foot and uses his hammer like a gun.

If I wanted to really frustrate myself, I would imagine the black actor who played the Commander of Deep Space Nine (Avery Brooks) being cast in the role of Steel, and the millions of dollars that went into Shaq's salary being spend on cool SFX and CGI, so that Steel could fight sprawling high tech battles with the bad guys from under the sea to the edge of space, with building, bridges and tanks being flattened like tin foil and and attack helicopters getting knocked out of the sky by the hammer. And I would give Avery Brooks, who can ACT with a dignity and potential worthy of James Earl Jones, room to do well all the things that Shag does so badly: act, emote, express rage and anger and indignation at the perfidy of the bad guys, and make you feel too his strife and extremity and pride.

Well, "Steel" killed the franchise, and so we will never know what could have been.

Shaq, go back to playing basketball (and making amusing commercials); you do that supremely well. Please stop inflicting movies on us.

1 star added because the idea of a high tech, armored black superhero who came back from the dead to be a hero was such a great idea. Too bad they dropped the ball so badly.

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:


Author: utgard14 from USA
18 July 2014

Garbage superhero movie based on the Superman spin-off character, Steel. One of the all-time bad comic book movies. Shaquille O'Neal is terrible, delivering lines like he's reading a menu. The armor his character wears is ludicrous and cheap. His sidekick is a woman in a wheelchair named Sparky, played by Annabeth Gish. Poor Annabeth tries but the material she's given is dreadful. Judd Nelson gives a self-consciously bad performance as the villain Burke. He knows he's in trash and doesn't even try to make the material work. In many scenes he's clearly suppressing laughter at the terrible lines he's given. It may not be professional behavior but I can hardly blame the guy. Collect that paycheck, Bender. Despite taking place in 1997, the police are driving cars that look like they're from the early '80s. Just another sign of the shoddy production, I guess. The whole thing looks cheap like it was produced by the dollar store. I suppose there is some unintended comic value of the "so bad it's good" variety. But mostly it just stinks.

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