In Man of Steel, (spoilers)

Zod unleashes the World Engine and sends it to the opposite side of the planet from Metropolis.

Can we deduce the real-world location of Metropolis based upon where the other piece was? Is the location on the shore of the Indian Ocean distinctive enough that we could discover where the opposite point on the Earth is? Maybe a specific place where that particular type of fishing is most common.

Anyway, it would be interesting if we could discover the location of The Big Apricot this way.


Using this map tool, I ran along the entire shoreline of the Indian Ocean. If you went straight through the earth, most of the time you would end up in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The only place I found that actually has land on the other side is on the Western shore of Indonesia, which puts you in Venezuela or Colombia if you went straight through the earth.

enter image description here

Metropolis does not appear to be located in South America, given the U.S. Military presence there, and the apparently short time for Colonel Hardy to fly from Kansas to the other end of the Kryptonian's ship, so this is likely an creative license. In fact, due to the size of the Pacific Ocean, there are not many places on Earth where there is land on precisely the opposite sides of the globe.

You could try to explain this using the equatorial bulge (which makes the point farthest from the Earth's center Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador, not far from the proposed "other side of Venezuala/Colombia), but this would not shift Metropolis all the way into the United States. Suffice to say, this is an error in plot, though one that most people probably won't think about.

(there is an Island that is at the extreme south of the Indian Ocean that is directly "under" the Montana, U.S. - Canada border, but it has no permanent or indigenous inhabitants - only researchers and military personnel, making it unlikely they would be fishing like the movie portrays)

enter image description here

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    Aww, that's disappointing. Nice find with that website, though! Really interesting to discover what's directly beneath you. I guess the DCU has a different Indian ocean shoreline...or maybe Montana has a really huge coastal city... – ilinamorato Jun 17 '13 at 17:00
  • Despite their cool graphic, I don't think the World Engine had to be specifically opposite it's US location for it to work. So it could be there is a large enough circle of operation for it to be in the Indian Ocean and still be close enough to work but not close enough to approximate the location of Metropolis. However, I did give you a +1 for finding such an awesome tool. Now when movies do this, we can tell them right away, GOOGLE IT! – Thaddeus Howze Jun 17 '13 at 17:59
  • Well no, it probably doesn't have to be directly opposite. But for it to be on the coastal U.S., there's a fairly large N-S diplacement. – The Fallen Jun 17 '13 at 18:16
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    Aha! If it was in Hawaii, that's not too far from the Western Coast of Africa! Solved it! – The Fallen Jun 17 '13 at 18:17
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    FWIW, the city does appear to be on the West Coast. In one of the scenes, the water flows to the right (towards the ocean), and the sun is setting on the right (west). – The Fallen Jun 17 '13 at 18:26

Try typing in 'Antipodes' in google. Metropolis is probably located close to the Gulf of Mexico. The engine is only seen flying over the man who is fishing but it's a big ship so could thousands of miles from his location. It's probably located near the Tropic of Capricorn off the Western Australian coast.

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    If the World Engine is only flying over the fisherman but not actually operating there, that could even be significant evidence for @SSumner's theory that it is on the west coast of the United States. – ilinamorato Jul 2 '13 at 13:13

It's Kansas City, folks. Remember, Smallville is in Kansas, and Metropolis is down the street. And here's an awesome tool for matching coordinates on opposite sides of the globe: http://www.findlatitudeandlongitude.com/antipode-map/#.VteexpwrJpg

Plot it and see for yourself.

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    In the comics, of course. But in the movies, there's an ocean outside the city. Making Kansas unlikely. :-) – ilinamorato Mar 3 '16 at 22:36

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