Ok so I woke up and I still could be fucked. So here’s Part 2 where I actually review the movie.
So as I mentioned in Part 1, naturally as a Spider-Man fan I had high hopes for this movie but also realistic ones I thought. I just wanted it to be better than the Avid Arad Spider-Man. It was a good movie no doubt and Tobey put in a good effort but it wasn’t perfect. And to me if you’re gonna make a reboot within a decade of the original movie that broke box office records you better be damn sure you bring it. Not only bring it but Hulk Smash it. Cos not only do you have the advantage of seeing what worked in the first movie and fixing what didnt, they also have the advantage of better CGI and shit like that.
So anyway there I sat in the cinema with my Spidey T-Shirt on with my Spidey cup filled with Sprite waiting to be blown away by Spider-Man “50 Shades of Grey” styles. My excitement soon turned to worry in the first 15mins when I realised something was going wrong. The scenes seemed very cliche, the dialogue very corny. It was like something outta “Passions”. Peter finding the briefcase that belonged to his father, Peter asking about it, his Aunt and Uncle looking at each other in the background with the “Oh fuck we forgot to throw that shit out, now we gotta base the entire movie around this shit” look. It just seemed wrong.
Even seeing the brief interaction with Peter’s parents with Peter, there didnt seem to be much of a bond there for him to be curious about what happened to them or for the audience to give a fuck. I can understand a kid getting upset about losing his parents but theres not enough of a bond there established to keep referring back to it in every argument he gets into with his Aunt & Uncle. I mean look at Batman Begins – Bruce falls into the well, his dad picks him up carries him and gives him a mad Dr Phil talk, lets him play with his stethescope and leaves the musical early cos his son was scared only to get popped in the chest. You can see the bond between the two and you can see the guilt that Bruce felt. It gave him a reason to be Batman. Seeing that made ME wanna become a crimefighter! But I hung in there expecting the movie to surprise me at any moment.
Seeing Peter in school didnt get any better. Going back to my earlier point, if you’re gonna make a reboot, make sure its better than the movie you’re rebooting. In this case it was gonna be hard to top cos Tobey Maguire nailed Peter Parker as a geek. Seeing him run for the bus and getting on the bus and the way he walked and his mannerisms was spot on! You could see the shit he was going through and you felt bad for him. You can see him admiring the girl of his dreams and you’re rooting for him to cop a root. Garfield as the nerdy Peter Parker is a hot motherfucker! He rode a skateboard and he dressed better than me (which I guess doesnt say much) and he didnt sell me that he was a nerd. He looked like one of those cool kids “pretending” to be a nerd like those cool kients in the club that wear 3D glasses with the lens popped out. Just cos you carry around a camera and wear a hoodie doesnt make you a nerd. He didnt seem like he was troubled enough or that he was alone. Like he gets beat up by Flash Thompson cos he intervened when Flash was bullying another kid, not constantly picked on outta nowhere. And if you were a nerd you wouldnt stand up to a bully for someone else’s sake. You’ll keep a low profile, go home and cry about it and write about it on your blog and then grow up to become a DJ. This is a nerd –
Lets get onto Gwen Stacy. In the original Spider-Man movie MJ is the popular chick that doesnt take much notice of Peter. You see her dating Flash, dating other dudes and basically has no interest in Peter. But theres always that moment. The moment in movies and even in life when something happens that turns friends into something more. Farkkk full Richard Mercer moment here. Well that moment was when MJ storms out of her house crying and her and Peter share a moment together. Thats the spark that sets it all off where Peter gets to show a little bit more of himself and MJ shows more about herself. That behind that exterior much like the comics, you see the truth about MJ. That she isnt just a bimbo and that its all a facade to escape her troubled homelife living with an abusive father. You see that transition and it becomes believable that a popular chick could be interested in a nerd like Peter. So how was it in this movie? Gwen a popular chick that is (implied) giving Flash Thompson after school BJs has no idea who Peter is and in the next scene shes on mad heat for him. And in the scene after that he’s climbing through her bedroom window Dawson’s Creek styles ready to hit it with his radioactive penis. Where was the turning point to make her interested in him? Where was the build up? Either the director was forced to cut alot of those scenes out or Emma Stone still thinks shes on the set of Easy A cos the Gwen I know from the comics is no hoe. So there was definitely no chemistry there at all. No lead up no nothing.
So Im disappointed in that. But what really made it disappointing for me was Uncle Ben and Aunt May but more so Benny. Uncle Ben. First off I knew it was a mistake casting Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben I mean fuck the dude is Charlie Sheen’s dad so what kinda role model is that? Second of all he didnt make me believe that he was a nurturing and caring dude. There was nothing about him that made me believe that he would put a bandaid on my leg if I fell out of a tree or whatever the fuck kids do these days. He was not fit to speak those immortal words to Peter that he would forever live his life by and I was right. For me the biggest inconsistency was timing, delivery, pacing and definitely storyline, but Ill talk more about that later. See Im not a full blown hardcore geek that cries when something changes from the original storyline. To me comics and movies should be updated to stay relevant to the audience/reader, as long as the “essence” of the character remains and what he stands for stays true. Look at stories like Romeo and Juliet thats been retold in so many different ways but the essence and meaning always remain constant. Let me first establish to you the defining moments in Spider-Man’s life and how it failed miserably in this movie
Uncle Ben speaking those immortal words
Like Shakespeare you cant fuck around with the words that fans and even non fans know so well. The words that Spider-Man lives by. The words which makes you understand why he cant just let Doc Ock cause havoc or let Rhino run rampant around Manhattan. That “With Great Power comes Great responsibility.” Its so simple but it makes so much sense. If you have the means to help, you have the responsibility to do so. Its how Ive tried to live my life whether it be my personal life or my not so personal life as a DJ. I was in a position to do events and make money and so I did 3 charity events to raise over $35K for various charities that I gave a shit about. Its made a big impact in my life and Im sure to other fans and its an important part of any Spider-Man origin movie. In the original Spider-Man – Peter is being a cocky kient after getting his powers and his uncle has a D&M with him in the car. He spoke it so well and with so much conviction you believed him. And when Peter told him that he’s not his dad and to stop acting like one, you can see the hurt in his eyes. It killed me on the inside. And you see the look on Peter’s face seeing the regret as the car drives away not knowing that will be the last words he’ll ever say to his Uncle. Beautifully done and beautiful timing. So how is it done in this movie? “Peter you forgot to pick up your Aunt from the station. Thats such a big deal Im gonna talk your fuckin ears off about some irrelevant shit, tell you about the latest episode of Revenge and by the way you here’s some immortal words to live by cos you know forgetting to pick up your Aunt was such a big fuckin deal I had to drop it in now.” Like wtf?! First off he didnt even say the correct words, it was re-worded. I cant even remember how he said it now it was that unmemorable. Second of all the timing was fuckin off! The setting wasnt there. Its like fuckin’ dropping the peak song in a club at 10PM when theres no one there….and its a Curry party. Fuckin killed me mang!!!
This is how its meant to be done. Properly like the first time
The death of Uncle Ben
The biggest theme for Spider-Man is the feeling of guilt and how Peter deals with it through his actions. The guilt that Peter Parker carries with him for failing to simply act and stop the criminal that would later on kill his Uncle Ben. In the comics and in the first movie Spidey was pissed off at some dude that did him wrong and so when that person was robbed and ran past him, all he had to do was trip the robber over and he woulda been captured. But he didnt. The guy wasnt armed or anything just a simple crook with what coulda been an easy takedown but he didn’t do it and his uncle Ben got killed by that same guy. Aite so thats reason to feel guilty about. In this movie, he gets pissed at some dude that wouldnt sell him a drink cos he was 2c short. Alright so the guy’s a dickhead but man its not that big of a deal. If anything Peter was being a mad Jew for trying to buy a drink that he knew he was 2c short for. So anyway hes like out the door already, the bad guy steals money and hes basically all the way down the street already when the store owner is like “Why didnt you stop him?”
Alright put yourself in his AirMaxes. If I was Peter Parker, even if I had Spidey powers and a dude robbed a store and was halfway down the street I wouldnt be fucked going after him. And if he later on kills my Uncle, Id be like “WTF? What a coincidence. Hes the same guy that was in the store when I was being a Jew trying to buy a drink when I was 2c short! What a small world. I reckon we have mutual friends on Facebook” Like you’d be sad but you wouldnt regret shit. Its not as simple as sticking your foot out and stopping the guy. And the reason why the original Uncle Ben got killed to begin with was cos he got carjacked when he was just minding his own business. What does Martin Sheen do? He goes and tries to wrestle a gun out of a man’s hands when it had nothing to do with him! His life wasnt even threatened!!! Farkkkk its like these Parkers couldnt mind their own business. No offense but he deserved to get shot. If he had just let him be like any other old man he’d be at home watching “The Price is Right.” So theres no huge sense of guilt imposed onto Peter and even if there was, he didnt show it. Even when Captain Stacy got killed and Gwen appears at his door and asks him why he didnt turn up to the funeral. He doesnt apologize, he doesnt seem remorseful, he doesnt seem guilty. He basically breaks up with her.
In Spider-Man 1 and even 2 Peter feels guilty about Uncle Ben after finding out the robber he didnt stop was the murderer (all done and dusted in under 10mins) where as Andrew Garfield doesnt seem like he gives a shit about leaving his grieving Aunt every night to deal with the loss of her husband. The only thing that saved Garfield was that Sally Field wasnt believable as Aunt May so I didnt really even care! Aunt May in Avid Arad’s Spider-Man was perfect. She was caring and nice and how an Aunty should be. She looks like she belongs in an Uncle Tobey’s porridge ad. Sally Field still looked quite young and again there was no bond between the two and not much depth to her. But regardless it didnt seem as though Peter was troubled or traumatized by the murder. He just went out trying to find the killer and cracking cocky (not witty) jokes while he was doing it. Think about it, if you even suspected that the car thief he apprehended WAS your Uncle’s killer would you be cracking jokes about small knives being your biggest weakness? I doubt it. Again very inconsistent, bad timing and out of character. With Tobey he was serious, angry and down to business and it showed.
Ok now onto the Lizard. First off I didn’t expect much from him. Spider-Man’s “Joker” has always been Green Goblin. The Lizard isn’t that interesting so to make an already boring story worse, they chose a predictable villain with not much to him. With Green Goblin you get the dynamic of Norman Osborne being your best friend’s dad and seeing Harry trying to appease his dad and blaming Spider-Man for his death not knowing its your best friend. So it’s alot more interesting. It was the look of this Lizard that I found the most amusing to be honest. He had this big grin on him and so every time I saw him I didn’t feel threatened, it made me wanna buy a stuffed toy of him and hug him at night the cute kient. He could give Dorothy the Dinosaur a run for her money. I reckon he needed a snout and a lab coat. Plus he didn’t act “Lizardy” enough. Like he didn’t snarl or hiss and shiet. The action scenes were far and few in between and the final battle isn’t even worth mentioning. It didn’t keep my interest at all and I didn’t see him as much of a threat.
What added to the lack of interest in the action was just when you think it was gonna get good, it doesn’t. The movie had big issues with momentum. Take the first appearance of Curt Connors becoming the Lizard – you expect a mad display of destruction on the Brooklyn Bridge. Ooh yeah Lizard is gonna rip open that Curry Extra dude that no one understands yet he got a major part in the movie. Oh wait Spidey has arrived on the scene major throwdown for sho. Oh wait kid is in distress and needs rescuing, let’s spend the valuable few secs you have saving his life by giving him your mask for no stupid reason apart from your identity being revealed on Instagram. Stupid and corny as fuckin shit!! The kid is shit scared of him when he rocks up in his mask yet he’s more braver when he’s got that mask on??? Am I analyzing this too much or does someone feel me? “Yo don’t be scared cos I rocked up in this ski mask looking like I’m gonna gangrape yah, but hey put it on cos you’ll feel braver.” And don’t get me started on the amount of times he took off his mask. Understandable when the cops surrounded him and they took it off, that shit’s bound to happen. Taking it off for no reason to calm a kid down when you could web the little shit and rescue him – unacceptable and out of character. So yeah what you think is gonna be a throwdown doesn’t take place. It’ll switch to him at school or with Gwen and still not enough time spent on character development. Momentum was one of the major downfalls of this movie if not the biggest.
I wanted to feel like how I felt when I saw this scene
People say that I’m being harsh cos I’m a fan and that the movie was “OK”. Not great or amazing but “OK”. So OK let’s break it down purely as a standalone movie in terms of entertainment value. Removing the fact that it was a Spider-Man movie and pretending that the Tobey Maguire movie never existed – What did it have going for it? If I was watching it for the romance/drama aspect of it – I didn’t see the chemistry and connection between Peter and Gwen. There was no moment that made Gwen fall for Peter. There was no likeable trait that Peter showed for her to fall in love with him and so suddenly too. So I didnt buy it. His Uncle came across as a pestering old man that was always on Peter’s balls for everything. It didnt seem like he was imparting lessons but more lectures. I can understand why they would make Peter listen to the voicemessage at the end of the movie so it’ll have that “awww” factor but leaving a long ass message like that just cos the dude didnt pick up his Aunt? Yep once again unbelievable and too cheesy. In terms of action nothing much there. As soon as it started getting good, it stopped, then started then fizzled. In terms of storyline, the whole angle of this movie is meant to be the “Untold story of Spider-Man” – soooo what was it? Was it meant to make you intrigued by what actually happened to Peter’s parents cos that was only touched on at the start and after the credits. Apart from that it wasnt really explored and it didnt really make me want to go and google it afterwards or discuss it with fellow nerds. I was more intrigued about what I was gonna order after the movie was gonna finish. The movie was extremely long and normally I love long comic book movies hoping they’ll go for even longer but there were plenty of times when I felt restless hoping the movie would end already. And dont forget this is my idol and a movie Ive waited over 2 years to see. And even if it wasnt Id still feel restless cos there were so many unnecessary scenes which dragged on for ageessssss that couldve been better spent elsewhere. For example the scene where hes limping and they move the crane in position so he could web swing through all of them. Fark me dead. And theres a whole lot more of scenes that made me think “WTF are they doing? Is this shit really necessary?”
Or this scene. You can ignore the Black dude at the end….actually that breaks my heart too
So in terms of just a movie – it didnt fulfil the requirements of a good movie. I believe directing and storyline had the biggest part to play in that. Even people like my wife and my close friends who arent Spider-Man fans didnt enjoy the movie. And just cos Im a Spider-Man fan doesnt mean I judge the movie more harshly – if anything its the exact opposite. I WANT the movie to succeed. I WANT the movie to be good. I WANT to like it and so I force myself to see the good in it. In this movie there wasnt many. If any. (Uh uh I dont know anybody. Sorry.) I do think that this movie was worse than Spider-Man 1, 2 and yes even 3. Cos even though 3 was flawed and there was so many things wrong with it, there were still scenes in it that moved me. That made me believe that was my hero there on the big screen. The scene where MJ breaks up with Peter breaks my heart every time and you can feel the emotion and desperation in his voice. It touched me so much that I used it in my (platinum) MixCD “Still DUI” which can still be downloaded here – http://soundcloud.com/djacemusic/dj-ace-still-dui-2007. Shameless plug. Actually fuck that its my site. Its like when Padme tells Anakin that hes breaking her heart before he force chokes the shit outta her. But yeah thats just proof that I can see the good in movies when as a whole it is bad. In this one I couldnt maybe save one moment and that was when Flash is trying to console Peter after he loses his Uncle cos I know that Flash is actually a real nice guy but thats for another post.
In my opinion Tobey Maguire is a better Peter Parker, and Andrew Garfield is a better Spider-Man but only slightly. Neither have nailed it down totally. Im more harsher on Garfield cos he knew what to expect. Maguire didnt. In defence of Garfield though script and directing may have let him down but I guess we’ll have to see in the next movie. And no matter what Ill still be there for the next movie with my Spidey shirt on and with my Spidey cup in my hand excited to watch the next movie cos thats what real fans do. Spider-Man holds a special place in my heart cos he got me through school and Im sure he has for shitloads of other nerds out there. He didnt give up on the Ace and so Im not gonna give up on him. And that my friends, is how you end a movie review.