Spider-Man was the first “big” comic book movie in most peoples minds. Blade, in my opinion, started it all and the X-Men movie was the first but whatever… Spider-Man came and conquered at the box office and impressed critics.
Unfortunately, I saw it then and now and my reaction was the same: meh.
From the first 30 seconds of the movie they get it all wrong when they said something like, “all great stories are about a girl” or some shit. When I saw that, I immediately had to double face palm myself. I mean… really?
Yes, Spider-Man has relationship problems. But, in my opinion at least, that isn’t central to his character. What is central to his character is the fact he has given up a large portion of his life due to his “great responsibility” and he is incredibly down on his luck. And this movie didn’t capture that, in my opinion, as it relied the relationship angle to show that.
This movie is also really campy for a big budget action flick. I am not sure if they did it on purpose because it was a comic book movie (this is well before Marvel and Nolan changed the comic book game) or if the movie just seems dated now (but Blade and X-Men don’t have that problem) but a lot of the side characters and especially the Green Goblin are just straight up goofy. The Green Goblin in general was just a misfire and campy as fuck. And the CGI already looks dated.
Other misfires… Toby. He is too short and too much of a puny wimp to be Spider-Man or Peter Parker. He spends more time crying than anything else it seems. And when he gets “angry” in the movie it seems incredibly forced.
And how can you have a Spider-Man without numerous mid battle quips? One of the main things about the character is that he never shuts up when he is rescuing people or fighting bad guys. He does it mostly to calm his nerves but really… he never shuts up and makes wise cracks constantly to the point that many heroes tell him to STFU when they work with him. And it is absent in this movie.
Another thing absent? Web slingers. Organic webs was just lazy and doesn’t give Parker a chance to show off his intellect.
The movie wasn’t ALL bad, it just isn’t as bad as it seems. The got the origin right and they did it fast enough that it didn’t dominate the whole movie. The parts where he was discovering his powers weren’t too shabby. And the fights and web slinging action wasn’t too bad. It just wasn’t good enough in my opinion to overcome some of the negative aspects of the film.
Rotten Tomatoe’s Rating: 89% Audience: 65%
Shadow’s Rating: 5/10– Decent but extremely overrated in my eyes as it doesn’t quite capture the comic book Spider-Man.
Pros, cons, and spoilers after the jump.
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