Finally got a chance to see Spiderman 3. I’ve read quite a few reviews about it not being up to par with the other Spiderman movies, particularly the second. The curse of sequels is not always that continuations rarely live up to the original but also that critics endlessly compare them to other installments in the series rather than seeing the movie as an independent film that stands on its own. Of course, one of the major obstacles is the fact that there are so many intertwining story lines, especially when drawing from a universe as rich as the Spiderman universe.
To be honest, I could never get used to the idea of Toby as Spiderman. The sequence where Parker gets overtaken by some kind of intergalactic black glob and goes emo had me cringing hard. He’s a really good actor and the series plays the “nerd given super powers” angle really good but I kinda wish James Franco got the part. I digress. Spiderman really amazed me for the breadth that it covers without really losing its focus. It could have easily be split up and developed as Spiderman 3, 4, and 5 but Sam Raimi put it all together in a beautiful package.
Rosemary Harris does a brilliant turn as Aunt May, preaching forgiveness while still coping with the loss of her husband. I was moved to the brink of tears when she recounted her courtship with Peter’s deceased uncle as she gave her wedding ring for him to propose to Mary Jane.
The Spiderman series works because of the conflict inherent in the film. Peter’s struggle with his private self, still the nerdy kid at college struggling to make ends meet, and public self as Spiderman the selfless yet anonymous hero out to make New York and the world a better place. The black suit brings out Peter’s darker side and we see him hurt all the people he loves the most except Aunt May, even disfiguring his best friend Harry. This movie brings all these conflicts to their climax and conclusion.
Don’t want to spoil it for anyone so here’s my vague review. All I can say is that it was a touching and fitting conclusion to the trilogy and I hope some bastard executive doesn’t try to bring this one back and let’s the damn thing go.