Tuesday, May 08, 2007


Film: Spider-Man 3
Directed by: Sam Raimi
Starring: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Thomas Haden Church, Topher Grace, Bryce Dallas Howard

Why does everyone love Spider-Man? It’s difficult to gauge, but one reason may be, unlike other superheroes, Peter Parker does not take his Spider-Man alter-ego for granted. There’s always a tension between the two selves, and finally, it’s Peter who prevails, not the mighty Spider-Man. This is what makes the character of Spider-Man most endearing, loved by kids and adults alike.
In its third installment, the Peter Parker story comes a full circle, the tension between him and Mary Jane is over, the Green Goblin and Harry Osborn story comes to an end, and Peter finally finds Uncle Ben’s killer and yes, you guessed it right, forgives him. He makes his choices and everything is all right.
Is Spider-Man 3 a good watch? Hell, yes. Does it live up to all the hype and hoopla? Hell, no. You enjoy the show, but… The original Spider-Man is still the better film in terms of plot structure and coherence. You cannot blame the guys though, they have tried their best, the visuals are stunning, especially the ‘in-air’ fights and the Venom costume. Oh, and did I mention Spidey’s jet-black suit?
But we expected more, especially when, this time round Spidey was pitted against not one or two, but three villains, the problem of his own black suit and usual complications with Mary Jane, and another girl in the mess, Gwen Stacy (Bryce Dallas Howard in an under-developed role). But what starts as a gritty action drama turns into mushy melodrama, with villain and hero, all forgiving each other. Oh, they are all so good people, and the bad ones die!
After the marvellously done credit sequence, where we revisit the previous two films, many things begin simultaneously. By now, Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire) is an icon for New Yorkers. Peter plans to propose to Mary Jane (Kirsten Dunst) as the latter’s Broadway career proves to be a dump squib. Complication begins when instead of offering support to his girlfriend, Peter starts enjoying his own Spider-Man image.
Elsewhere, Harry Osborn (James Franco) turns into New Goblin, burning with revenge against Spider-Man. Then, there is Flint Marco (Thomas Haden Church), who killed Uncle Ben, now an escapee from prison, in a bid to save his sick daughter’s life. Peter gets a rival photographer Eddie Brock (Topher Grace) who is ready to outwit him at any cost. And, to top it all, some outer space substance comes to live with Peter.
Spider-Man struggles between his own self and his acquired powers, deals with three baddies -- New Goblin, Sandman and then Venom, and learns the most valuable lesson of life, that you have a choice what you want to be.
The film looks spectacularly real, which is its greatest strength. Every character here is believable, very life-like, and there’s some great acting. This is probably the reason why despite all the action and computer graphics (watch out for the transformation of Sandman, and the ‘in-air’ scenes) the film veers toward melodrama. At one point, you actually expect Peter to burst into singing, that too a sad song. The problem with this movie is most of the new characters remain half-baked and director Sam Raimi wants to show too many things together. He does show it all, effortlessly. Despite everything, we all love Spider-Man and he does not disappoint.

Rating *** (Good)

No comments:

Post a Comment