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Action & Adventure movie directed by Sam Raimi

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Spider-Man 3 - All art no plot

  • Aug 19, 2008
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One of the most anticipated movies of summer 2007 Spider-Man 3 ended as possibly the biggest letdown. The spirit that had driven the first two films seems to fizzle in a film that just doesn't have a story to work with its substantial budget.

The original Spider-Man was a great popcorn film, providing a good live-action adaptation of the character's development while Spider-Man 2 was one of the best superhero features ever put on film. So why does a sequel involving the same cast and director fail? I personally believe it was art. Director Sam Raimi seems so caught up in dazzling the audience with visual spectacles that he loses the heart of the previous films. The special effects drive this film which is never a good thing. Human elements are lost, and thus the film fails. Sorry to say Tobey Maguire's portrayal of Peter Parker and Spider-Man is amusing, but it isn't in the same league as Johnny Depp's Jack Sparrow who'll pull in the crowds. The acting in these films has been good, but no character has ever stood out to the point of wanting to see the movie for the character alone. J. Jonah Jameson is probably the most enjoyable character of all three films, but of course no one wants to see a movie based on him.

Part of the no plot problem is the villain overdose this film suffers from. How they went from Green Goblin in the first one, Doctor Octopus in the second (my favorite of the web-slinger's villains) to the third with New Goblin, Sandman and Venom. That's THREE villains, Sandman and Venom not getting enough character development for the villain to care about them as characters, and you only know New Goblin because, you guessed it, Harry Osborn's been in the last two films, prepping for his turn to crime...which also comes across as very forced in this movie. Not to try and spoil the film, but to save viewer groans he has a period where he hits his head and forgets Peter's Spider-Man, but of course remembers later on. The fact that they used that cliché is something I can't understand.

Moving on to Venom and Sandman, we get a mixed issue. Neither of these characters gets the screen time required to have the viewer care for them, especially Sandman. Another problem I have is after they went through all the trouble of bringing realism to Green Goblin and Doctor Octopus, Sandman still looks and dresses exactly as he does in the 60s comic books, but not to discredit him entirely some of the Sandman effects in the film provide great entertainment. Then we have Venom, who I actually liked the design of, but even if Eddie was fleshed out he must only be Venom for the last fifteen minutes of this movie, and knowing how many fans the character has this will come as a major disappointment to say the least.

Going back to visuals and specials effects; this film suffers from some of the same problems the original Spider-Man film did, and that's at times the special effects seem to deny reality in many ways. Characters seem to fly through the air as if they are weightless, and some things just defy physics and logic, no matter how cool it looks on screen. Spider-Man 2 didn't suffer from this, Doctor Octopus and Spidey seemed to have weight to them when they fought on building tops and fought across The Big Apple. Sandman turning into a sandstorm and flying around (probably against the wind too) doesn't seem to cut it as real.
Overall Spider-Man 3 is a great display of visuals, but not that great of a movie. Lots of it looks like they had a concept artist sketch some cool images out which Raimi just randomly slapped in their (such as Spider-Man crouching in front of an American flag). Could've worked as a poster collection, or comic book, just not as one of the most highly anticipated movies of the year.

Spider-Man 3, I give it a solid 3/5 Stars

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More Spider-Man 3 reviews
review by . March 16, 2011
I know that Spiderman 3 is weaker than the first two and is the worst in the series. However, I think that it doesn't deserve to be hated as much as it is by people. There are a great deal of goofy moments, but there are goofy moments in all the other spiderman films too. They also squeezed three villains into one movie and that was a very bad idea, but we'll talk about that later. However, for all the bad stuff, there is some very good stuff that makes this an entertaining and worth-watching …
review by . August 14, 2009
Spider-Man... the films more or less made Comic Book movies more popular.  At least for the new era.  It sort of changed the way we look at hero films and what they can do.  Spider Man 2 was far better than the first by showing the struggles of Peter Parker being Spider Man.  While films like Batman Begins and The Dark Knight put Spider-Man to shame in the character development arena, it was still refreshing to see a Super Hero movie that went a little beyond some of the campiness …
Quick Tip by . September 07, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
This movie is such a step backward from the first sequel. Too many characters and too much forced devices make this movie an unfocused farce. Sam Raimi deserves to be fired after this melee, how can you allow the Hobgoblin look like a snowboarder....Gwen Stacy's intoduction was unnecessary and the Butler did it! (yeh, he decides to say something after Harry's face gets all messed up. This is such bad storytelling and Raimi at his worst. and Hollywood is already remaking this fallen …
Quick Tip by . August 30, 2010
A movie that gets so much bad press it's unbeliveable when it's NOT a bad movie. Yeah Venom could have been left out and NOT played by Topher Grace but aside from that, it's not bad.
Quick Tip by . July 17, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Daughter loved this movie she watches it over and over again and I always see something that is new to me!
Quick Tip by . August 05, 2010
A nice if a little cluttered finale to the Spiderman tilogy with Spiderman fighting off 3 villains while finally getting national acceptance. Not as bad as you've heard.
Quick Tip by . August 10, 2010
I tried to watch this movie again last weekend and I actually got angry and turned it off. How could they take something as cool as Spiderman and make it so lame? And even though it wasn't a critical plot point, why was J. Jonah Jameson's desk hooked up to some ridiculous over-exaggerated buzzer? There was too much cheeze I couldn't make it to the great action scenes.
review by . November 09, 2009
A failure for the series, but good fun none the less..
While Spider-Man  and Spider-man 2 set the bar higher for excellence in  comic book adaptions, Spider-Man 3 the latest installment in the hugely popular  series is a massive step down from those two. It has far too many plot lines and too many villains and that just makes it a crowed  mess. While it does  boast some  really dazzling action sequences and  some cool fights  in the film, it still can't be saved or salvaged from  the  over use of everything   …
review by . September 09, 2009
Being an enormous fan of Spiderman and greatly enjoying the first two films, I looked forward in anticipation to this film. I was greatly disappointed. There was just too much going on in this film. Where Doc Ock and the Green Goblin were fascinating villains with powerful performances in the other films, the Sandman was a very dry character and Venom was comical like Danny Devito's Penguin in the Batman movie. Additionally, Peter Parker's romance with Mary Jane was all over the place and never …
review by . May 15, 2009
The third and final installment (allegedly) of the Spiderman movies is all set to tie up all those little loose ends - Peter Parker is finally secure in his role of Spiderman and seeks Mary Jane Watson's hand in marriage ... but, happy endings are only for fairy tales, right? In this installment we are introduced to two newcomers: 1st we meet Flint Marko (Thomas Haden Church) who, after escaping from prison stumbles into a particle accelerator and is transformed in to the mighty Sandman. The 2nd …
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Spider-Man 3 is a 2007 superhero film written and directed by Sam Raimi, with a screenplay by Ivan Raimi and Alvin Sargent. It is the third film in the Spider-Man film franchise based on the fictional Marvel Comics character Spider-Man. The film stars Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Thomas Haden Church, Topher Grace, and Bryce Dallas Howard.

The film begins with Peter Parker basking in his success as Spider-Man, while Mary Jane Watson continues her Broadway career. Harry Osborn still seeks vengeance for his father's death, and an escaped convict, Flint Marko, falls into a particle accelerator and is transformed into a shape-shifting sand manipulator. An extraterrestrial symbiote crashes to Earth and bonds with Peter, influencing his behavior for the worse. When Parker abandons the symbiote, it finds refuge in Eddie Brock, Jr., a rival photographer, causing Peter to face his greatest challenge.

Spider-Man 3 was commercially released in multiple countries on May 1, 2007, and released in the United States in both conventional and IMAX theaters on May 4, 2007, by Columbia Pictures. Although the film received generally mixed reviews from critics, in contrast to the previous two films' highly positive reviews, it stands as the most successful film in the series worldwide, Marvel's most successful film, as well as the second highest-grossing superhero film behind 2008's The Dark Knight.

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