Review: Spider-man 3

Superhero movies are often ambitious in scope, but less grandiose in their execution. Most of the time, this really hurts the overall quality of the movie, because some parts that should get more attention are glossed over for other parts that may need to get less attention. While its not fair to say that Spider-man 3 is a victim of this problem, it does come awfully close. Spider-man 3 starts off with Peter Parker, seemingly in control of every facet of his life. He's got the girl in Mary Jane, the job (still freelancing at The Daily Bugle), doing great in class, and basically on top of the world. The city of New York loves Spider-Man, and just about every crowd shot features a couple of really hot chicks pining for him. But then, his picturesque life slowly begins to unravel, with the revelation that the man that really killed Uncle Ben has recently escaped prison, Harry's vendetta to avenge his father, and a new rival in Eddie Brock, Jr. It seems that what Sam Raimi was going for in the third (and possibly his final) installment of the grand trilogy was what happens when we're faced with those choices that impact not only ourselves, but those around us. Spider-man 3 is, at its heart, a story of redemption and forgiveness, and as far as comic-to-movie adaptations go, it's a tearjerker. In the movie, there is so much going on that its hard to give everything the proper attention it deserves. It really seems like the Venom storyline was added in to appease fans (similarly the Gwen Stacy storyline), but the Sandman storyline doesn't work without the Venom storyline, and Peter's troubles with Mary Jane and Harry Osborne don't work without Gwen Stacy. Don't get me wrong, what was there was phenomenal. Despite all the business, the storyline was cohesive, however, you have to wonder if one storyline was more fleshed out than another if it would have made for a better movie. Venom. Grace played him perfectly, as you'd swear that he and Maguire were mirror images of one another (with Grace being the evil one of course). People will probably be disappointed with his little screen time, but the special effects for him were freaking amazing (same goes for Sandman). It still makes you wonder if the next incarnation of the series will feature more of the Spider-man/Venom battles that make their's one of the best rivalries in comics. I was a little worried that we'd only see about five minutes of Venom, but he was a major player in the climatic battle at the end of the movie. The casting was spot on. Toby Maguire and Kirsten Dunst have become so adept at their roles, there's really no surprises there (the same can be said for James Franco). The newcomers, Thomas Haydn Church (Sandman), Topher Grace (Venom) and Bryce Dallas Howard (Gwen Stacy) comfortably fit in with the rest of the cast, and do a great service to their roles. J.K. Simmons (J. Jonah Jameson), Bruce Campbell and Stan Lee make their requisite appearances (with Bruce Campbell stealing the movie with his scene), so all is well. The special effects were just jaw-dropping. Numerous other outlets have stated the huge distance the looks of the movies have come since the first one. Sandman and Venom are both seamlessly integrated into the settings, making you forget sometimes that their mostly CGI. In reading this review, you may think I didn't like the movie, but I actually loved it. Its the best characterization of Spider-man himself (the movie opens with a traditional Spider-man monologue, which was just beyond cool). For me, everything was done just right, and meshed well. I can see that some people may not be as pleased with it, but I think its rather unfair to the movie, as its coming in with tremendous expectations. It will still do well in the box office though, and is most definitely worth seeing. I loved it. So do yourself a favor, and check it out. Rating: 80 out of 100