Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Spiderman 3

Although there were several negligible deviations from the original storyline in the first Spiderman movie in 2003, I was still impressed at how the film makers were able to place a heavy emphasis on character and plot development even though it was an action-packed movie. This valuable trait has not only earned the franchise a considerable amount of praise from critics, but also allowed it to stand out from other action movies which typically belong to the "all-brawn-no-brains" catagory. It has, no doubt, in my opinion, done justice to the original comic strip. The same goes for the second movie.
As for the lastest installment, I can only quote what the newsanchor in the film has to say to sum it all up,
"This might be the end of Spiderman."
Indeed, it might. Judging from the 3rd installment of the series, I think the director has blown the chances of ever reviving the franchise. Any avid Spiderman fan would be irked, but still satisfied if there were minor changes to the plot or aesthetics. Certain things like Spidey's webbing being organic, when it isn't in the original arc, or Mary Jane Watson being his first girlfriend, when it's supposed to be Gwen Stacy, can be overlooked. But having Sandman get away scot-free and worst of all, Venom die so quickly and easily at the ending is too much. It's an insult to the fans and the characters involved. I mean, Sandman's a state convict and Venom's supposed to be more powerful than Spidey right? What's the rational behind the ending man?
Also, there was little or no character or plot development in this one. I had high hopes when the show explored the softer side of Sandman, explaining the motivation behind his crimes. But I was throughly disappointed when the story immediately plunged into the characters of Eddie Brock and Gwen Stacy:
1) Brock was shoved into a scene where he starting taking pictures of a near fatal disaster and then introduced to Jonah Jameson as "the guy you hired last week". Pathetic.
2) Stacy just popped up from no where as an equally-as-bright-as-Parker student in Parker's physics class. Like where the hell has she been all these while until now? Parker must have been blind not to notice a beauty like her from the beginning. I thought his myopia got fixed when his genes got altered by that spider bite?
3) Even the intended relationship between Brock and Stacy was not supported by prior scenes. The only hint of it was a smart-ass remark Brock made to her father about her being his girlfriend. That's it.
Were the producers getting too complacent because they know that, either way, this is going to be a world wide blockbuster hit? I don't know for sure, but I think I can almost safely conclude that. Why else would they have so many inconsistencies in the show? Here's some to name a few:
1) Spidey had no problems removing the black suit when it first bonded with him and even manages to hide it in a small chest in his room. He could even put it on and take it off effortlessly. But in later scenes, he had so much difficulty doing so. Why's that? Nevermind that the symbiote's supposed to bond with Spidey, not the suit, but how in the world did it become so difficult to dispel later on? The only possible explaination the movie provided was from Dr. O'Connor who said that it would be increasingly difficult to dispel it if Spidey chosed to allow it to bond with him. But hadn't Spidey already bonded with it when it crept up his bedside earlier on?
2) Spidey threw a bomb which detonated upon impact when it hit the wall behind Harry Osborn. Osborn didn't die, but his face was scarred. How then did the same damn bomb blow the symbiote AND Brock into smithereens at the end? It's ridiculous because even if the bomb did kill both the alien and Brock, surely there must be traces of Brock's corpse left isn't it? But all was left of the aftermath was just a little incy wincy bit of the alien squealing and disintegrating. The only logical speculation my friend and I came out with is that Brock bonded with the alien again when he attempted to save it, became Venom and leapt away just before the bomb exploded. Feasible, but we aren't very sure. Unless this is what the director intended to do in order to give an illusion that this is the last installment, but has plans to continue the series.
3) Sandman was clearly determined to kill Spidey when Venom proposed an alliance to finish off the web crawler, but why did he suddenly become so remorseful towards the end? The drastic change in his emotions is too hard to swallow. One moment he is out for blood and the next he is all guilty and emotional. What's all these flipping here and there? Roti prata?
Could it be that the producers were trying too hard by squeezing in 3 villains into the measly 150 minutes of showtime? Or did they not try hard enough by failing to give each character enough screen time for more development? I mean, so what if the film clocks 180 or 210 minutes? It's not like they don't have enough budget to push it that long considering the obscene amount of profits from the first two films. It's not like the audience would go tired right? I bet my balls that those in the theater were dying for more. Titanic hit the 3 hour mark and it was still a mega blockbuster wasn't it? I just don't get it.
The Newspaper gave it pretty good reviews - 4.5 out of 5 stars, but I'd say that the critic was just being too kind. 4.5 is flattery. Come on man, quit trying to suck up to the producers, it ain't going to earn you a big fat pay cheque for publicity. The atrocity of its weak plot is enough to set tongues wagging among fans. That, my fellow comrade, is enough publicity in itself.
A word of advice - if you're happen to be among those who look out for good plots and character developments in a movie, AVOID SPIDERMAN 3 at ALL COSTS! Even if that means selling your pre-booked tickets. Get a DVD instead. Trust me, not the papers. Why? Because the critic who gave the 4.5 in today's papers confessed he isn't a Spidey fan, so you gotta take his review with a tablespoon of salt. Because there's a section by the art department that is dedicated to Spiderman 3 that has little snippets which introduces several characters in the Spiderman series and sad to say, they made an embarassing mistake of identifying Spider-Carnage as Carnage himself. What's more, they even said that Carnage came to be when the symbiote seperated from Eddie Brock and fused itself with Cletus Kassady. WRONG! The Venom symbiote gave birth to the Carnage symbiote, you noobs! I can't believe information on this, which is so easily available on the internet, can be misintepreted and replicated on the papers.
Here's evidence of the mistake:

(That, in the picture, is not Carnage. Its Spider-Carnage. Check out what they wrote in the introduction too.)

Spiderman 3 has been a disappointment for me. The only consolation was that the visual effects were breathtaking and the villians' design, especially Venom's, were intricately designed and executed. I take my hat off with regards to this, but other than that, I must say that the show has gone far too off tangent. It is, at the most, a sappy-all-brawn-no-brains, 3 out of 5 stars, mediocre action film.

I honestly feel better after this episode of verbal vomit. It's a release. Phew..

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