I watched Man of Steel a few weeks ago, and enjoyed its different version of various characters’ stories. It had slipped my mind that here had been so much buzz prior to and immediately after its release, about its promotion to churches. The actual religious imagery did not seem more prominent than in other versions of Superman, and so the promotion of the movie to churches ought to be considered clever marketing rather than an indication of a substantive difference.
SPOILERS: Here are some of the more explicit points of intersection with religious themes: Jor-El’s father does actually say that his son will be “a god” to the people of the world where he sends him. And if “El” has resonances of divinity for those who know Hebrew, it is a family name and a subset of the Kryptonian race. Kal-El differs from other members of his race precisely in not having been “intelligently designed.” And there are hints that humanity is an offshoot of the Kryptonian race, since the Kryptonians had scouted out our planet long before.
On a related note, I actually had a student write in an assignment last semester in my Religion and Science Fiction class, “As you can see, Superman and Jesus have several things in common. They are both from planets other than Earth,…”
Have you watched Man of Steel? What did you think of it?