Spider-Man 3 Review

by Ed Lau on May 5, 2007


Every so often there are movies that you know are going to be huge regardless of whether they’re any good or not. I mean, it doesn’t take a genius to figure that the new Harry Potter and Shrek films are going to have massive box office grosses no matter what. Spider-Man 3 is much the same. After the first two in the series made more than $1.6 billion at the box office, you know that everyone is going to be lining up to see the third installment. Understandably, the hype is huge as the first of the summer mega blockbusters hits theaters in North America.


The best thing about the first two movies was that they were quintessential examples of the superhero genre. You really get the sense of extraordinary powers and an overall sense of greatness in terms of scale. The movies had a “bigness” to them that can only be done when you’re dealing with people that can fly, throw cars or swing around with spider webs. Spider-Man 2 set the bar rather high.

Spider-Man 3
isn’t a bad movie. It’s quite entertaining and all the actors do a rather good job with the comic book material roles that they’re given. Sure, some of the dialogue is a bit campy and cliche but so is the source material. However, in comparison to the first two movies, I have to say the third was actually quite disappointing and easily the worst of the series.


While the action sequences are a lesson in special effects and digital editing, none of them are as memorable as the fight on the speeding train of Spider-Man 2 or on the bridge of the original. The scenes lose the sense of massive scale since some are close quarters and confined while others take place at totally generic looking locations. There’s no new ridiculous acrobatic move that makes you go “Whoa!”. In fact, Spidey seriously overuses the shooting “web balls”. There’s nothing all that special except for the fact that Venom and Sandman look amazing.

But looking amazing is pretty much all they do. I could’ve done without Sandman altogether as his storyline is an afterthought for the movie. It’s cliche, boring and ends in a completely ridiculous manner. Venom is possibly the coolest character in the Marvel universe but there simply isn’t enough of him.


A good portion of the movie is occupied by the more “normal” situations between Peter, Mary Jane and Harry Osborne and none of it seems even the least bit believable. The stupidity of all these characters is mind boggling and if you listen closely (well, not so closely in the case of the theater I was in…), you can hear the audience saying “Oh, c’mon…” because everything they say and do with each other is just too ridiculous for words. There is much more sappiness to this movie and not in a quasi-inspirational good way like the first two. It’s the kind that makes you wonder whether these people are actually thinking before the words seem to fall out of their mouths.

By themselves, each character is slightly more enjoyable. Peter’s interaction with the symbiote is actually rather hilarious (but stupid) and Harry evolves into a more complex character in this installment. Mary Jane, however, has become incredibly whiny and needy. Yes, even moreso than usual. While she was cute and enjoyable in the first two, she is rather annoying here. Oh no, Peter’s not paying enough attention to me. He’s freakin’ Spider-Man, woman! He’s fighting bad guys and saving the world. You knew what you were getting into at the end of the second movie. It’s not like Peter’s trying to be a jerk either. You just weren’t clear as to what the heck you wanted from him. Spidey-sense doesn’t make him a mind reader.

Oh, and Kirsten Dunst sings. That’s just a recipe for disaster.


I think the major downfall of this movie is that they tried to do too much in the time they were given. I’m almost sure the DVD will include almost an hour of deleted scenes because there are holes everywhere and nearly every scene seems rushed. There is too much, especially with several new characters to develop, to fit into the two hours and twenty minutes and as a result, much of it falls flat. Sandman and Gwen Stacy receive too little time and end up very one dimensional despite Thomas Hayden Church showing some great emotion during his performance. Topher Grace does manage to salvage Eddie Brock but again, there’s too little of him and Venom. Spider-Man vs. Venom could’ve and should’ve been an entire separate movie rather than trying to squish it into this one. Again, Venom is one of the best and most popular characters in the Marvel universe and to give him such little screen time is just criminal.

Despite all these flaws, there are still a few good reasons to see Spider-Man 3 this summer. J. Jonah Jameson and Bruce Campbell’s maitre d’ character are hilarious and worth a matinee admission by themselves. Actually, now that I think about it, 3 is probably the funniest of the Spider-Man movies. However, this isn’t a comedy and laughs aren’t what you’re going for. While it is the worst Spider-Man film to date, the action and special effects still come in huge waves. It’s poorly written and sometimes infuriating to watch as you look on in disbelief while the characters deliver a corny line or do something else incredibly stupid but Spider-Man 3 is not a boring movie. There’s still stuff to enjoy. However, if you could only watch one film this summer, this isn’t it.

Verdict: 4 out of 10

in Entertainment

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Leo May 5, 2007 at 3:23 pm

I still wanna see it but I’m in no rush. In fact, I actually prefer to wait for the DVD because of all the extra features.

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Saman Sadeghi May 6, 2007 at 9:15 pm

I have heard a lot of the same negative reviews, but I still want to see it!

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Rick Yuen May 7, 2007 at 11:46 pm

I agree that it’s probably the worst of the 3 movies and yes, Kirsten Dunst singing was horrible, especially in the beginning of the movie!

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Search Engine Marketing May 9, 2007 at 1:23 pm

I think i’m going to see it this weekend … last weekend was too much for me!

Darin

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Sourish @ Iphone 4 Jailbreak June 1, 2011 at 11:51 am

im very excited for the launch

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