The Best and Worst Parts of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Trilogy

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Posted by Undeadpool (611 posts) - - Show Bio

With the recent release of the new Spider-Man movie trailer, people are already comparing it to the web-slingers' previous forays to the silver screen, both favorably and unfavorably, but I wonder how many of these critics have seen those movies recently? Fellow Whiskiites Alex Navarro and Matthew Rorie mentioned, on Screened's podcast, not having seen the first Spider-Man movie in years and if two cinephiles like them can't keep up, who can? Me, that's who. Here's a look back at what Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Trilogy got wrong and what it got right.

== TEASER ==

Spider-Man

What Doesn't Work

Let's talk about the elephant in the room, and it was in the room on day 1 for even the most hardcore fans of the film: Spider-Man never looks real while web-slinging or wall-crawling. This can be chalked up to serious CGI characters still being in their infant stages of realism, but it's now striking and almost slaps you across the face just how weightless and unreal the effects in this movie look.

I keep expecting Rita Repulsa to throw her staff to Earth and make him giant-sized.

Another, more enduring, problem is that we don't really get to see Peter Parker the genius or Peter Parker the teenager. Toby Maguire was already staring down the barrel of 30 when he was chosen to play the role, so the film wasted absolutely no time in rushing Pete out of high school and into college.

We might as well have opened the movie on graduation day for how little we saw, but this speaks to a much greater problem of the movie: we don't get much of a feel for the kind of person Peter Parker is. His genius is never on display (sure, he gets good grades, but he doesn't actually invent anything), we see his awkwardness, but it's played-up so much that it comes across as comical more than pitiable or sympathetic. He also never really quips, which is integral to his character across every form of media.

The replacement of Gwen Stacy with Mary-Jane was also profoundly difficult to comprehend for a number of reasons: most notably they basically made her into Gwen. She was the girl next door, she was a low-maintenance, and she was his first love, all things that could be said of Gwen Stacy. MJ is also given next to nothing to do except be fawned over by Peter and abducted by Osborn to recreate the famous Bridge Death, only with a much happier ending. Less relevant but still very strange: Kirsten Dunst is naturally blonde, while Bryce Dallas Howard, who would later play Gwen, is a natural redhead.

Finally let's talk about the Green Goblin: Willem Dafoe is a great actor who brings a level of sinister menace to every villain he plays and possesses a face that could turn ancient warriors to stone...and he's hidden behind a Power Rangers villain-caliber costume. I understand that certain changes need to be made in movies (GG's original costume was just that: a Halloween costume), but covering up your leading antagonist's horrific face with a face that is hilariously over-the-top is an incredible mistake.

What Does Work

This is a small detail, but it bears mentioning: J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jameson was really, really great. He gave it a different turn than Ed Asner, who voiced JJ in the animated series, but he brought a weird amount of depth to a character who could've easily been glossed over. He's not only played for laughs but some surprisingly profound moments, such as when Green Goblin smashes into his office and demands to know who takes Spider-Man's picture. Despite Peter standing right there, Jonah immediately says he doesn't know and the pictures come in the mail. It was a small moment, but it let you know the guy wasn't evil, he was just sorta sleazy.

When Spider-Man came out it was an absolute revelation. The movie did action better than any superhero movie before it (with the exception of Blade) and took the source material seriously without being shackled to it. It showed us a world that a superhero (and supervillain) could actually inhabit semi-realistically and it showed that it could not only be a big-budget blockbuster, but that there was such an audience for these movies that it could SHATTER records.

X-Men may have introduced the world to the high-budget superhero movie considering the most expensive superhero before that was Blade and the most expensive one before THAT was probably the Punisher movie starring Dolph Lundgren in which Castle teams up with the mobsters who murdered his family. With X-Men, studios realized they could take risks but with Spider-Man, they realized they could make massive money.

In the End...

The movie's not bad, it's just dated. The CG doesn't hold up, the writing comes off as overly corny and the plot is all over the place. On the plus side, the movie's a lot of fun and it's a great jumping-off point to the series, establishing a series of relationships that carry over well into the next movies. The movie's more about potential than execution and it shows a lot of it.

Spider-Man 2

The Flaws

Spider-Man 2: Spider-Man 1 But Better

Evil Dead 2 was essentially a remake of The Evil Dead, both also directed by Sam Raimi, with a much bigger budget. It had the same plot, the same lead actor, and very similar monsters, but it also had a much more intentional tone and was an objectively better made movie. Spider-Man 2 comes off in much the same way: Spidey pines for MJ, someone comes between them, a scientist accidentally turns himself into a monster, Mary-Jane is kidnapped, Spidey rescues her, someone finds out Peter Parker is Spider-Man, the villain kills himself, MJ falls for Peter.

Seriously, it's true that there are only a few plots out there, but even the fine details of this movie are essentially the same as the last. Even going so far as to have Spider-Man rescue a baby from a burning building in both movies and in both movies you're left to answer why a baby was left alone in the apartment in the first place.

The central romantic conflict is also weirdly mean-spirited. I get that it's more interesting, and probably more realistic, to have a rival love interest who isn't a titanic jerk, but Mary-Jane breaks the heart of a man who's perfectly fine and in fact might be more stable and better for her. John Jameson is essentially an innocent victim in Peter and MJ's troubled love life and the movie makes no effort at painting him as anything but a perfect match for MJ. We never see them have so much as an argument let alone anything that would make her pick the Wall-Crawler over the Astronaut other than the fact that it's their "destiny" to be together.

Finally, we get to see more of Peter Parker but this comes at a cost since we're also treated to Spidey losing his mask on a crowded subway who swear not to tell anyone who Peter is. The issue is that nobody actually knows. What are they going to tell anyone? "Spider-Man is actually this 5'9" guy between 19 and 26 with brown hair and brown eyes! In this city of millions!" Another logic leap is in the creation of Doctor Octopus which hinges on his mechanized arms having a built-in Artificial Intelligence that causes them to not only go berserk, but convince him to commit crimes to keep his project going. But since he controls the arms with his spinal column, there's really no need for an AI other than to advance the plot.

The Merits

Speaking of the villain of this movie, instead of getting a strange, foam-rubber monster you'd expect to see destroying a model of Japan, you get someone who's face you can actually see emote, he's got a great look and in the right circumstances actually looks like someone you'd run away from rather than gawking which turns into laughing. Doctor Octopus also comes off as legitimately remorseful and motivated for his actions beyond trying to make money or being a sociopath. He projects a truly villainous, powerful aura due in no small part to his mechanized tentacles looking legitimately powerful and realistic.

What's that over there? A credible-looking villain?

Which leads us back to the CG, which is vastly improved from the last movie. Spider-Man has a weight and gravitas to his moves, especially when he swings across the city and even more especially when he tangles with Doc Ock. The fights have impact and weight, and even though Spidey doesn't quip like he usually does, we get to see a bit more of his personality shine through when the mask is on. The audience begins to look forward to the clashes, even if the good Doctor gets a little monomaniacal near the end of the movie.

Side-characters also have emotional depth well beyond the first movie. Harry Osborn vacillates between trying to be a nice guy and a good friend to Peter while seething over his hatred of Spider-Man for supposedly killing his father, Mary-Jane does seem conflicted between the two men in her life, and Peter and Aunt May have some legitimate angst because of Uncle Ben's death.

The Verdict

Spider-Man 2 still holds up as a remarkably good superhero movie even in the wake of better movies like Iron Man or Christopher Nolan's Batman movies. The characters resonate more, the action scenes are more fluid, and there's nothing glaringly wrong with the film itself. The characters, while better developed, still don't quite feel like Spider-Man characters, but they do feel like GOOD characters.

Spider-Man 3

What Went Wrong?

Auuuugh! My meal tickeeeeet!

I'm going to be painting in broad strokes here because, let's face it, if I have to go into every single thing this movie did wrong, we will be here all day AND all night. First: this is where it became incredibly obvious that Gwen Stacy had been swapped for Mary-Jane as the Gwen Stacy in this movie was a sexy, high-maintenance, fashion model. Pretty much three adjectives you can describe Comic Book Mary-Jane with.

The symbiote is shoe-horned in so clumsily that it's basically forgotten for the entire first act, the act in which its introduced, and remains hidden until the middle of the second act, Sandman is so ham-fistedly developed as the "sympathetic" villain that he comes across as completely one-dimensional, Harry Osborn gets stuck in what I think is the first honest-to-God "Amnesia Storyline" in a movie since 1977 and Peter gets a "My Chemical Romance" haircut and dances a Saturday Night Fever dance down a New York street. The movie plays like it was written by twenty people with twenty objectives and it STILL has the SAME EXACT PLOT AS THE LAST TWO MOVIES, only this time it's a Mary-Jane is jealous of the perfectly innocuous and innocent Gwen Stacy instead of Peter being jealous of the innocuous and innocent John Jameson.

This movie is beyond schizophrenic, possessing three primary villains all vying for the spotlight and none of them ever managing to actually get it. The protagonists behave in such a way that it's clear they're characters in a movie following a script that tells them what to do and where to go. They're unmotivated, they're mechanical, and most of them appear to just be going through the motions, even as characters. There is no over-arching narrative nor is there any room for development because so many characters are just shoved into the movie, no one of them gets any real screentime. This is a perfect example of what listening to your most vocal fans can do since most of the additions (Gwen Stacy, Venom) were ultimate requests from them. And the final nail in the coffin is that the entire story hinges on a pair of plot twists so absurd that they completely undermine the motivation of two of the film's leads.

What They Got Right

I'm sad this movie didn't give me more to do.

This isn't a terribly popular opinion, but I actually like the choice of Topher Grace as Eddie Brock. He was given next to nothing to work with, but his potential as a more cocky, brash villain than one who's a cackling mad scientist. We had an anti-Spider-Man who used his powers of cleverness and witticism for evil and actually seemed like he could be a credible threat to our Friendly Neighborhood Wall-Crawler. Beyond that, the CG still looks great, but it's not used to terribly good ends as the fights are few and far between and come off as more excuses for Spidey's mask to rip.

At the End of It All

This movie was the Batman and Robin of the Spider-Man franchise. I'm not saying it was as bad as that movie, I'm saying it was the movie that, despite being profitable, forced the studio to cool down on a popular franchise because it had become absolutely venomous, no pun intended. Studio over-involvement coupled with overblown expectations. It's star had become too big, necessitating his face being seen as often as possible...and two of the three villains constantly losing them as well. The movie came off more as a cash-in than a medium with a story to tell.

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#1 Posted by kungnima (180 posts) - - Show Bio

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yy62Vds8-4 Best part.

#2 Posted by thesilverbeatle (645 posts) - - Show Bio

This explains everything perfectly. All i can say: thank you for posting what we are all thinking when we see the trailer for the new Spiderman movie.

#3 Posted by DanielThomasRandKai (46 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree, I really liked the choice of Topher Grace as Venom, I thought that could have been so great, if the script didn't suck as much as it did.  It's kinda disappointing we won't ever be able to see him to justice to the character now that we have a reboot.

#4 Posted by Norusdog (203 posts) - - Show Bio

nice article.  agree on almost all of it

#5 Posted by CATPANEXE (9368 posts) - - Show Bio

Best part? Any part with Bruce Campbell in it.

#6 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (12989 posts) - - Show Bio

i gotta disagree, Topher was a horrible Venom. He didnt ever truly manage to keep the true spirit of Venom and made it seem likeso trivial and petty witch it was but there was a level of sympathy available for the comic version of the character. and once again i must ask.......where the hell was Topher when they were casting Peter Parker?

#7 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio

  

#8 Edited by -Vigil- (380 posts) - - Show Bio
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
#9 Posted by The Stegman (23989 posts) - - Show Bio

to be honest, i didn't mind how they basically turned Mary Jane into Gwen Stacy in the first one, or the power rangers esque Green Goblin suit, what got me was that they pretty much zoomed by Peter Parker's high school career, when many of his adventures took place in high school

#10 Posted by iSpud (7 posts) - - Show Bio

Great post! Thoroughly enjoyed reading. 
 
The killers of the Spider-Man movie for me are Toby Maguire (poor casting call in my opinion) and THE AUNT MAY SCENES. Remove the Aunt May scenes and the movies improve in quality dramatically. They slow the pace of the movie down far too much and to be honest, are excruciatingly boring. 
 
My favourite thing about the Spider-Man movies are J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jameson, this was a truly inspired casting and he brings humour while at the same time playing a huge part in the story progression. 
 
I'd rather not talk about Spider-Man 3. Topher Grace is awesome in That 70's Show though.  

#11 Posted by spidermonkey2099 (615 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice article. I never much cared for the Raimi-Maguire Spider-man trilogy for pretty much all the reasons that you listed under what's bad about them. Maguire just didn't seem like Spider-man to me, just a do-gooder in a Spider-Man suit. Also, I found the whole trilogy to be entirely too corny. Spider-man isn't supposed to be as dark as Batman movies, but that doesn't mean you have to camp them up that much. I'm really looking forward to this next Spider-man film.

#12 Posted by Grimoire (538 posts) - - Show Bio

Also hated the third movie and liked the second the best.

#13 Posted by Wattup (648 posts) - - Show Bio

I liked the girl who offers him cake. You know, when he's living in that crummy apartment in Spidey 2 (as well as her integral cameo in Spidey 3)? She offers him cake and he eats it quietly.  Such a random inclusion to the film. Not sure what the purpose was. Was Raimi saying that Peter Parker can indeed have his cake and eat it too? Was it a sly nod to how Hostess Cupcakes were advertised in comics in the 70s and 80s?
 
Yes. 
 
Cake Girl.

#14 Posted by TadThuggish (73 posts) - - Show Bio

What they got right: The Sandman's origin. He was an awesome, classically-rendered comic book villain up until the Uncle Ben dogshit.

Spidey 3 has a number of good things in it, they just aren't as overt. Bryce Dallas Howard as Gwen Stacy was incredible, but the storyline was crappy and people would rather pay attention to the bad things so they can play the "how far can we skew the word 'rape'" game.

#15 Posted by Red Rum (357 posts) - - Show Bio

The Lizard was my favorite villain of the trilogy...
 
oh, right... never mind. :'(

#16 Posted by Deadcool (6810 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123
 
#17 Posted by SuperXAsh (509 posts) - - Show Bio

1- Well you don't see the current Peter in the comics in High School anymore, so I really don't see WHY that's such a huge/important thing. Since they were wanting to make this into a franchise, it'd be stretching it to have Tobey Maguire be stuck in High School. He's still the hard-luck hero regardless. Most teenagers in high school, even the geniuses, don't go around making a sophisticated web-shooter out of thin-air. It'd suddenly bog the story down a bit having to answer those questions (how'd he make it? where's he get the ingredients? wouldn't that be expensive?? how's it take his weight?? How long does the web fluid cartridges last?). They'd risk breaking suspension of disbelief. In an established comic book world, with the crap that the Fantastic Four and Avengers did on a daily basis at the time, you can just take that kinda thing at face value. When it's in a world that's seperate from those concepts, (and meant to be slightly based in a semi-reality) you need to at least do more than gloss over it. Which was kinda the reason why they gave him organic web-shooters. 
 
2- Gwen hadn't been in the comics for a long time, Mary Jane hasn't been the wild party girl she was for the longest of times, so her being swapped out for Gwen doesn't really bother me. While the nerd in me would like to see the "Bridge Incident" occur in a movie, (would give it a good visual/unexpected punch) the other part of me knew it wouldn't have made for a very uplifting superhero movie if the hero fails to save his girl in the end. I mean, he fails to save his uncle AND the girl of his dreams within the span of a month?? That would've made for a very emo Spidey. 
 
3- Green Goblin's look didn't bother me. It's the same reason why we didn't see the X-Men in their comic-appropriate costumes... they'd look FRIKKIN' SILLY in real life. Same goes for Green Goblin. He'd look really silly if he was in his classic costume. They kept pretty much everything else. Seeing how the cops acted when he attacked the parade (trying to shoot him), makes his costume/armor look all the more practical. What more could you want?? 

Online
#18 Posted by Mr. Dead Pool (2625 posts) - - Show Bio
@Deadcool: MY EYES!!!!!!!
#19 Posted by keith71_98 (387 posts) - - Show Bio

Spider-Man 2 was my favorite. Spidey 3 was a disaster. Waaaay to much material crammed into one film. Really fell apart at the end.
#20 Posted by Neverpraying (1465 posts) - - Show Bio

@Mr. Dead Pool said:

@Deadcool: MY EYES!!!!!!!

I agree.

Also these Spiderman movies were ok although the 3rd one did suck, but how much better could the remake be? I think it'll be worse.

#21 Posted by xanthiss (177 posts) - - Show Bio

Topher Grace was a let down. Lets face it. Yes he did not get the screen time he deserved, and Spidey 3 was like watching 10 lbs of potatoes getting stuffed in a 5 lb bag. There was way to much going on for my liking. Venom in the comics was in his early appearances was a deadly foe for Spidey. He was bigger, stronger, and did not set off the spider sense. It was the first time as a reader I saw Spidey scared of a villain. It was a great dynamic that they lost in the movie. The 2nd film was the best, but the 3rd was a train wreck. And I am sorry but if he takes his mask off in the new movie as much as he does in the first 3 I am walking out. There was no reason to take his mask off on the subway and that crap wold have totally been on youtube by the next day! 

#22 Posted by BatBen9135 (63 posts) - - Show Bio

I love how when talking about the bad parts in the first and second movies you used "what doesn''t work" and "the flaws," but to describe the bad parts of the third movie you used "what went wrong." Made me chuckle, and the criticism is spot on. Good article.
#23 Posted by cobra88king8 (341 posts) - - Show Bio

I really loved Spider-man 2 even though most of my friends hated it. I think it's partly because Alfred Molina did a fantastic role as Doc Oc and I could watch him play that role in his own trilogy and be fine with it

#24 Posted by The_Tree (7284 posts) - - Show Bio

Completely agree. I hope The Amazing Spider-Man does better with staying true to the comics, and it looks like it already is.

#25 Posted by difficlus (10679 posts) - - Show Bio

I actually liked spider man 3. 
Spider man 1 was pretty flat IMO. Not good not bad just ok. Spider man 2 was better but still not up to standard. Apart from stupid emo parker i liked spider man 3 due to the action and suspense.  
 
Biggest complain in any of the films: peter parker was a loser and (i hate to say this word) a p*ssy. I mean he was a loser and jerk in the comics but he was a cool, easy going, really likable loser. He's not a sob crying over mary jane every second.  I mean they took the angst to another level. it's disgusting...i hope new parker isn't like this. 

#26 Posted by perry_411 (428 posts) - - Show Bio

topher was a horrible choice. 

#27 Posted by Jedted (68 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree with Topher as Brock, he was a good rival for Peter and i don't know why everyone hates him.

I still like Spider-man 3 but i don't deny that it has some serious faults. If they had maybe focused more on building up Eddie Brock's character(saving Venom for the next movie) it would've been much better.

#28 Posted by spidershamrock (1140 posts) - - Show Bio

I remember seeing Spider-man in cinema when I was 8 and it was the best movie I ever saw until I saw Spider-man 2. Spidey 2's train scene still gives me goosebumps to this day and reminds me why I still love Spidey as a character especially through all the crap he went through with Brand New Day. As for Spidey 3, biggest movie dissapointment ever. So many things wrong from the jazz strut throught the scene to how marko became sandman, to the entire Harry Osborne thing. Just watch How Spiderman 3 Should Have Ended to see all the problems. I loved those movies though, and was saddened when the reboot was announced but the appointment of Andrew Garfield as Spidey and the epic trailer have left me looking forward to the Amazing Spider-man as possibly the best one.

#29 Posted by Fantasgasmic (1071 posts) - - Show Bio

Considering Sam Raimi admitted he hated the Venom character, its not surprising that he made him one of the lamest villains, never called him "Venom" and always had Venom's face peeled back to show Eddie's but with fags for some reason.

#30 Posted by haydenclaireheroes (9004 posts) - - Show Bio

great article

#31 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio
@-Vigil- said:
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
What, he can't act like the 90s cartoon Peter with the symbiote? "I've grown a lot more than a backbone, Flash!" 
 
 How is dancing a product of confidence and agression??? 
#32 Posted by -Vigil- (380 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
What, he can't act like the 90s cartoon Peter with the symbiote? "I've grown a lot more than a backbone, Flash!"   How is dancing a product of confidence and agression??? 
His aggression isn't only physical. He's also more aggressive in trying to woo the ladies and seem cool. And like I said, he's a dork. He's not gonna know how to be cool all of the sudden simply because he has more confidence. That simply isn't logical.
#33 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio
@-Vigil- said:
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
What, he can't act like the 90s cartoon Peter with the symbiote? "I've grown a lot more than a backbone, Flash!"   How is dancing a product of confidence and agression??? 
His aggression isn't only physical. He's also more aggressive in trying to woo the ladies and seem cool. And like I said, he's a dork. He's not gonna know how to be cool all of the sudden simply because he has more confidence. That simply isn't logical.
He can't just act tough? He has to do a long jazz music dance solo and do the Saturday Night Fever strut down the street? Surely a dork would know the difference between "Tough guy" and "Dancer". 
#34 Posted by -Vigil- (380 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
What, he can't act like the 90s cartoon Peter with the symbiote? "I've grown a lot more than a backbone, Flash!"   How is dancing a product of confidence and agression??? 
His aggression isn't only physical. He's also more aggressive in trying to woo the ladies and seem cool. And like I said, he's a dork. He's not gonna know how to be cool all of the sudden simply because he has more confidence. That simply isn't logical.
He can't just act tough? He has to do a long jazz music dance solo and do the Saturday Night Fever strut down the street? Surely a dork would know the difference between "Tough guy" and "Dancer". 
Not Peter. At least not in my opinion. And that's part of his charm!
#35 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio
@-Vigil- said:
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
@InnerVenom123 said:
@-Vigil- said:
GAAAAAAH!!! We don't need people ripping on Spider-Man 3 again! I am SO tired of this! Sure the movie had some missteps (mostly Venom), but it was actually a great movie IMHO, and my favorite of the three! Cut it some slack, guys!!!
 
Also, the scene with peter dancing dorkily with the popped collar and everything (the one posted in the first comment)? Totally realistic. Peter is a dorky guy (which is why we love him). The symbiote increased his confidence and aggression, and what do you get when you give a dorky person an overdose of confidence and aggression? THAT SCENE.
What, he can't act like the 90s cartoon Peter with the symbiote? "I've grown a lot more than a backbone, Flash!"   How is dancing a product of confidence and agression??? 
His aggression isn't only physical. He's also more aggressive in trying to woo the ladies and seem cool. And like I said, he's a dork. He's not gonna know how to be cool all of the sudden simply because he has more confidence. That simply isn't logical.
He can't just act tough? He has to do a long jazz music dance solo and do the Saturday Night Fever strut down the street? Surely a dork would know the difference between "Tough guy" and "Dancer". 
Not Peter. At least not in my opinion. And that's part of his charm!
The point of the "PETER TURNS EVIL" thing is that he turns evil. Loses his charm, and himself. And he has to reject it. The only part of SM3 that got that right was when he punched Mary Jane in the face, except she was so desperately unlikeable that it was a godsend. 
#36 Posted by _Marco_Smith_ (1621 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123: imo that scene was evil.
#37 Posted by -Vigil- (380 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123 said:
The point of the "PETER TURNS EVIL" thing is that he turns evil. Loses his charm, and himself. And he has to reject it. The only part of SM3 that got that right was when he punched Mary Jane in the face, except she was so desperately unlikeable that it was a godsend. 
 I thought he was turning plenty dark (plus, I don't remember MJ being terribly unlikeable, and certainly not punch-worthy). But I don't think we'll ever see eye-to-eye (which is fine), so I leave you to your opinions.
#38 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio
@_Marco_Smith_: It was. But MJ was b*tchy the entire movie, so at the same time it was kind of a blessing. xD 
#39 Posted by _Marco_Smith_ (1621 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123: Yeah, sweet relief. Most of my gripes are with Venom (like most), and him coming in at the very end, and having a generic plan. We could have had another great moment with Venom terrorizing MJ, or him taunting Peter. I wish they would have cut some of the other stuff out (emo peter time, a lotta sandman (Peter has plenty of stuff to be pissed about already!) pointless Gwen Stacey) So there was more time for Eddie as Venom.
#40 Posted by pspin (891 posts) - - Show Bio

I liked all of them, as a movie goer, they were entertaning and enjoyable (the Saturday Night Fever dance was hilarious). 
 
As a comic fan I thought that the first two were good and the third was ok, if you cut out Sand Man the move is good, i had the biggest problem with him, not Venom, I thought that he was portrayed well by Topher Grace dispite little to work with.
#41 Posted by Video_Martian (5645 posts) - - Show Bio
@haydenclaireheroes said:
great article

Agreed.
#42 Posted by obscurefan (274 posts) - - Show Bio

Holy Crap! Someone else actually thought Topher Grace was good in that role. Dang man I thought I was the only one.

#43 Posted by DH69 (4258 posts) - - Show Bio

the biggest flaw with the trilogy...tobey mcguire, im sorry but he looks like a creepy pedo...especially in the 3rd movie.

#44 Posted by danhimself (22493 posts) - - Show Bio

I think it all comes down to poor characterization....the Peter Parker/Spider-man in the films was nothing like the Peter Parker/Spider-man of the comics...the same goes with all of the other characters in the films....While Sam Raimi may have made some great films he just wasn't the right choice for Spider-man....I think a Spider-man movie should be more of an action comedy with a little bit of the romance thrown in for the ladies....Spider-man should be funny....the difference between Peter and Spider-man is that being Spider-man allows Peter to act out and say the things that he thinks in his head but can't say without the mask

#45 Posted by Undeadpool (611 posts) - - Show Bio

@obscurefan: I too thought I was alone, but no, I thought with a meatier part he could've redefined Brock as we know him.

@InnerVenom123: Even the dance scene aside, which I didn't actually mind that much, the movie is a mess. I go in-depth in the article, but off the top of my head: Peter's entire motivation to be Spider-Man is retconned and undermined, Harry's butler's confession is a clumsy deus ex machina, and Sandman is a completely one-dimensional character whose motivations change on the whim of the script. It's a clunky mess.

Staff
#46 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

I pretty much agree with all that was said here.  The irony about Kirsten Dunst and Bryce Dallas Howard was funny as hell, though in my opinion Kirsten is so butt ugly she would have been terrible to play Gwen as well.  And I can't agree about Topher Grace as Brock/Venom but..to each their own.  In a way this article is good because it gives us a litmus test from which to judge the upcoming Amazing Spider-Man.  Perhaps they can get it actually RIGHT this time and flawless. Well, as flawless as can be.

#47 Posted by Sky_Jokiel (304 posts) - - Show Bio

Terrific article!

#48 Posted by labarith (670 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't think it's fair to say that JJJ is "sleazy" in Spiderman 1... he clearly protected Peter, clearly put his life at risk for his employee.  Something, ironically, Peter never gets to see. 
JJJ hates Spiderman.  Why?  That's not the issue.  He's not some sensationalizing journalist - he actually thinks he's right.  In this sense, he's kind of scary... but whatever.  Given US politics today, where an entire political party seems to be governed by out of work "detookurjobs"ers who miraculously think they've got the solutions to fiscal crisis, despite being the opposite of economics experts... is it really so hard to say that JJJ "just doesn't get it"? 
 
Spiderman is a vigilante, who wears a mask, has 0 accountability, and seems to joke around in times of crisis.  JJJ isn't that insane.

#49 Posted by LiquidSwords (115 posts) - - Show Bio

The worst part was all of Spider-Man 3

Loved the article!

#50 Posted by leokearon (1790 posts) - - Show Bio

Great article and 100% agree

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