Last night in the heart of New York City, Nokia co-sponsored the world-premiere of Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel”. We, along with the usual Manhattan glitterati, we lucky enough to attend the red-carpet gala on a rain-soaked Monday.
Yeah, this job has its privileges sometimes, we’ll admit it.
Nokia is one of many companies that have a sponsorship deal with the movie, though they are cited as the largest global partner. Such deals are used to off-set the high costs of the film, associated with production and later promotion of the summer hit, and it helps to have someone else help pick up the bill. In exchange, those companies can have their products featured in the film—sometimes subtle, other times not.
Lumia 925 in the house
At the event and before the movie, the crowd was able to mill about outside of the famous Lincoln Center where the film was being premiered. Amongst the crowd were a handful of Nokia employees, sporting “Man of Steel” of shirts and carrying around shiny new Lumia 925s.
The Nokia Lumia 925 is an alternate version of the Lumia 920 with an aluminum body to make it thinner and lighter, a new sixth-lens in the camera to make photos shaper and a improved AMOLED display. While the device gives up built-in wireless charging, the feature can be added back by snapping on a wireless charging shell, which also adds some color to the device.
We were able to play with the 925 a bit, including taking a peek at that new Lockscreen clock feature, that allows the time and any notifications to be shown on the display in “standby”. The feature worked well and you can see it demoed in a short video above to get an idea of what it will be like. Though it launches with the Lumia 925, it will be coming to all Windows Phone 8 Lumias later this summer with the GDR2/Amber update.
Once again, we were also impressed with the 925 especially just how thin and light it is compared to the Lumia 920 (or even Lumia 928). One other feature we really like is the camera button, which is the most prominent yet that we’ve felt on a Lumia. That should allow easier photo captures as the button felt just more tactile (there’s nothing more annoying than buttons that are too flush, or don’t have enough travel).
Overall though, it was fun to see the phone, emblazoned with a Superman logo, milling about the public (even if they were slightly more excited to see the movie).
Man of Steel vs Nokia
Ironically, the Lumia 925 doesn’t appear in the film. Indeed it looks to be the Lumia 900 (and maybe a 920) that is shown off around three times in the mega blockbuster that we were able to discern. That includes a bar scene where two Lumias are shown, one receiving a text, another with Louis lane on a white Lumia 900 making a call (and the Carl Zeiss chrome band clearly being shown) and another with a phone with a faux ‘NOKIA’ emblazoned on the top and something about Zog hacking their RSS feeds (seriously).
If you’re looking for it, you’ll clearly get a chuckle as it seems a bit obvious with the placement. But honestly, it was done well and it’s more of a “blink and you’ll miss it” rather than a Nokia commercial in the middle of the movie. In other words, it was tactful (unlike Nikon’s D3s scene, which was borderline a commercial and quite hilarious in its obviousness).
So why no Lumia 925? Simple. The movie was shot months ago and Nokia would not have had a final version of the phone to be used quite yet for its big scene. In addition, being 9-12 months out from shooting, there is no way they would be able to tie it in with a dual product launch and movie launch.
Instead, we’re treated to what one could argue are more iconic Nokia Lumia designs, including the polycarbonate body, that Carl Zeiss/PureView band and of course “NOKIA” on a phone.
Wrapping it up
Needless to say it was a fun night and without ruining the movie with spoilers, yes, it’s highly entertaining and definitely worth seeing. It does clock in at two hours and twenty minutes, so ease up on the soda beforehand. While the film does go by fast, it does perhaps go on for a bit longer than I would have liked and some of the fight scenes begin to feel a little too Matrix 3-ish (and I say that as someone who likes the Matrix 3). Ironically, the movie has two actors from the Matrix trilogy in it, so maybe it’s more than coincidence.
Director Zack Snyder, who also did the excellent “300” and “Watchmen”, does a great job with “Man of Steel”. It has its own visual style different from those other two films, but it still brings Snyder’s unique touch, which I happen to really enjoy. Indeed, I’m not even a Superman fan (or a comic book reader), sorry even this geek has his limits) but I was able to thoroughly enjoy the spectacle—it’s a classic summer popcorn flick that is clever and well casted.
And kudos to Nokia for scoring one of the biggest promotions deals of the summer. They tied themselves to a solid, summer blockbuster and they should be able to get their name out there and noticed. With the Lumia 925 launch coinciding with the movie’s release and those limited edition Superman covers, it ought to help with word of mouth and their continued brand revival here in the U.S and elsewhere.
Download the official Man of Steel app for Nokia Lumia phones here in the Store.