Enter the Sandman
Now the first "Spider-Man" was excellent, the second "Spider-Man 2" was nearly as good and then there is "Spider-Man 3" a movie which critics and fans appeared to dislike. The thing is that depending on what you want "Spider-Man 3" is still a good movie. If what you want is fun and action and little else then it delivers with plenty of CGI enhanced action and battles with bad guys. But if you want a movie which develops a coherent storyline then "Spider-Man 3" will disappoint as it throws in an array of bad guys which causes it to end up disjointed and bitty.
Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire - Spider-Man 2) seems to have finally got things sorted, his alter ego Spider-Man is now popular amongst the people and he is with Mary Jane (Kirsten Dunst - Wimbledon) his one true love. But life is never easy especially as his old friend Harry (James Franco - Spider-Man) knows that Peter is in fact Spider-Man and is after vengeance for the death of his dad. And to add to Spider-Mans problems there are two new bad guys in town which are hell bent on killing him. Plus with Spider-Man now being idolized Peter's ego gets the better of him causing more issues between him and Mary Jane. Who said being a super hero was easy?
As you would expect "Spider-Man 3" builds upon what we've already learned abut Spider-Man and if you can't remember we get that classic Marvel intro which gives us a complete recap of what has gone on before. So we now have Spider-Man who is popular, got his girl, Mary Jane, but unfortunately an enemy in Harry who knows that Spider-Man is in fact his friend Peter Parker. Which is all well and good but then as soon as the main movie starts it becomes all a little bitty as it brings in more bad guys so on top of Harry who becomes the new Goblin we get Flint Marko, aka Sandman, Eddie Block who thanks to a mysterious black goop becomes Venom and of course that black goop causes are friendly web slinger to show his dark side. And if that wasn't enough Spider-Man has more personal problem when it comes to love of his life Mary Jane. Basically there is too much going on.
And that is one of the negatives to "Spider-Man 3" with so many new characters it has to build back stories to all of them causing it to be disjointed as it flits between each one trying to build links between them all so that when we do get the big battle they can all be involved. This makes "Spider-Man 3" feel long and almost padded out as if an extra bad guy has been thrown in to give it a better running time but in doing so ended up making it longer than necessary.
But whilst the storyline to "Spider-Man 3" ends up a little messy it does deliver the two main elements which make these "Spider-Man" movies so good, it is funny and action packed. The comedy runs thick and fast through "Spider-Man 3" maybe a little too thick with some elements such as Peter Parker trying to act cool ending up feeling cheesy and manufactured. But it still delivers those much needed light hearted moments, the quirky jokes which makes it such good fun, something which is often missing from other super hero movies that veer towards the dark side.
And of course "Spider-Man 3" with all these bad guys to battle is chock full of action from one on one battles through to the big final fight. All of which are of course CGI enhanced and the CGI in "Spider-Man 3" is the best so far. From the way the black goop takes over the body, through to Marko dissolving away as the Sandman it's impressive and when incorporated in a fight sequence makes for some spectacular scenes. Even the CGI used on Spidey as he swings through the air is improved and there are but a few scenes where it looks completely false.
As for the performances well those familiar faces of Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Rosemary Harris, J.K. Simmons and Bill Nunn all return to reprise their roles and it has to be said that by this third movie Tobey Maguire really has done a marvellous job of making Peter Parker/ Spider-Man his own. As for the new characters and bad guys, well whilst Thomas Haden Church as Flint Marko, aka Sandman, and Topher Grace as Eddie Brock, aka Venom, do a solid job of acting the actual characters are weak and that's down to there being too many in this third "Spider-Man" movie. It's over crowded and although we get back stories to each of them it never feels enough as it has to flit between them and so the actors have little more to do than be 2 dimensional characters.
What this all boils down to is that visually "Spider-Man 3" is still a very good movie full of light hearted moments and marvellous CGI enhanced action. But when concentrated on it ends up a little weak as it struggles to build a really coherent storyline thanks to all the bad guys which enter the fray. It's by no means as good as the first "Spider-Man" and by no means as bad as some critics and fans made it out to be. It's more a little disappointing in comparison to what had gone before but still entertaining.