Life as I know it… plus commentary


with 7 comments

spiderman-black-costume.jpgJust saw Spiderman III yesterday.  And before I go any further, I’m going to say I still love saying it “Spider-mun” as if it’s a last name like Goldman.

OK, think back.  Remember how Spiderman was all action.  And then we loved Spiderman II because it delved into the psyche and angst of Peter Parker…. a veiled attempt at an Empire Strikes Back episode.  Well, Spiderman III took everything that was good about Spiderman II and blew that up even further.  But now its too much and takes what we liked and made it annoying.

Case in point…. the majority of the movie is the Star Is Born conflict between rising star Peter Parker and quick to fade has been Mary Jane.  A full two thirds of the movie is summed up in this way:

Mary Jane: I’m having a really bad day.  Life sucks.  I need ice cream.
Peter: It’s OK.  Get back on your horse.  Don’t let life knock you down. Get back out there!
Mary Jane: You’re making no attempt to understand how I feel.

I bet even girls are thinking, “Gosh. Have some chocolate and go watch some Gilmore Girl reruns and get over it.” Seriously.  I thought I was watching a bad episode of Saved By The Bell and Zack Morris and Kelly Kapowski were going at it.  Again.

There ends up being three action pieces.  A bit with the new Goblin at the beginning, a bit with the Sandman and a free for all at the end with all three plus Parker’s rival Eddie Brock in the Venom suit.  Venom… a black goo, spider-like symbiote that melds with Brock gets waaaaaaay too little screen time, which is a shame because he’s one of the far more interesting characters of the movie.  The bit where Peter Parker initially likes the amped up feeling he gets from wearing the symbiote suit is hilarious.  He walks down the avenue like a nerdy/hip version of Travolta in Saturday Night Fever, but with bemused reaction from all the hot women he flirts with.  Far more interesting than the sad sack Sandman, whose powers kind of reminded me of the mummy in the Brendan Frasier movies of the same name. 

Some distractions…. Black suit Spiderman/Peter ends up wearing his hair differently and Parker ends up looking like Pete Wentz and a million other emo boys.  And then there’s Tobey Maguire’s double chin.  I’d seen pictures of him during his off time where he’d packed on some serious weight and while his body looks in pretty lean form now (cough…. Wintstrol)(not that I’m implying that celebs take this to slim down for movies)(I wonder if the second parenthetical should have had two parenthesess)(cough… maybe I am suggesting it)(why am I coughing so much?), you can still see the weight’s affect on his body, particularly in one long closeup shot meant to be dramatic but all you can think is “Spidey’s got a double chin”. 

For my taste, they could have cut back on all the Mary Jane telenovella stuff and focused more on the Peter-Spidey/Harry-Goblin arc.  The whole movie could have been all about that… you’ll know what I’m talking about when you see the movie.  Because when you get down to it, all the great movies I can think of centered on redemption themes… not sad girl feelings.

Still.. a good solid movie and yes I’ll get it on DVD when it comes out. 
arnold rating: B


Written by arnold

May 5, 2007 at 11:39 am

Posted in Movie Reviews

7 Responses

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  1. First of all, Spiderman is an over-rated superhero who hit his peak while spelling words on The Electric Company. I could be Spiderman if I had a pair of web shooters.

    Secondly, back away from derogatory comments about Zach. I met him a couple of years ago and he’s a decent fellow, devoted to his wife, and actually a bit on the quiet side.


    May 6, 2007 at 8:35 pm

  2. Kramer!!!

    How pleased am I to hear from you?!

    I have to agree with you there. Spiderman… he’s right there with Aquaman and Hawkman. And one step above my fake superhero… The Desalinator (worst super power ever… takes salt out of things).


    May 6, 2007 at 11:37 pm

  3. Saw Spidey 3 on Saturday. Really was disappointed. I thought the whole Sandman character was superfluous and unneccessary (kind of like me using both of those adjectives together). What they should have done is take that guy out altogether, and left the conflict between Venom, Hobgoblin, and Spiderman. They gang up on him at the end, and then Spiderman brings Hobgoblin out of evil at the last possible second, and then they take down Venom.

    They also should have left out all of the lip-quivering. You’d have thought that Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst would know how to cry by now.

    Cultural note: People in SA laughed at many parts of this movie, and it wasn’t because there were a whole bunch of teenagers. They laughed at the crying attempts, and especially at the SNF-throwback scene. I just didn’t see American audiences laughing at all of that.

    And, yes, Arnold, I agree. Venom got way too little screen time. You are more generous than I with your rating, however. I would give it a B- at best, but maybe that’s because it didn’t even come close to my expectations. Too bad. Could’ve been really good.

    Cubby in Cape Town

    May 7, 2007 at 11:55 pm

  4. Good review. I had a lot of the same thoughts–it seemed like the movie tried to do too much and ended up doing everything OK, not great.


    May 19, 2007 at 9:21 am

  5. Saved by the Bell was a great show…when I was 13. Everybody liked Kelly Kapowski. I got called Zack Morris ALL THE TIME. I agree about the movie. Too many story lines. They have to do something with the Peter and MJ relationship. Good to know that wearing a black spidey suit means that you have to wear mascera.

    Norv Turner

    May 24, 2007 at 10:40 am

  6. all the spiderman movies were great i am just another friend of your friendly normal spiderman!

    spidies princess

    June 27, 2008 at 12:48 pm

  7. […] Spiderman! […]

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