Saturday, April 1, 2017

View Log: New Spider-Man Film

The latest Spider-Man film is the Spider-Man story we've been waiting for since Sam Raimi was making these. There's a snappy wit and a lot of love for the source material backed up by tremendous onscreen talent.

As for anything else... spoilers ahead!

I think right off the bat, everybody who saw this movie walked away thinking the same thing.

"It should have been called 'The Amazing Spider-Gwen.'"

When you get down to it, for better and worse, it's her story.

This rubbed a lot a viewers the wrong way, but honestly, I don't think the writers had any idea how they were going to resolve the growing mystery with Peter Parker's parents. Though I must say, I'm glad that Peter finally caught the mugger that killed Uncle Ben after that plot thread was left hanging from the first film.

I still can't believe that they kept the mugger's true identity of Johnathan Ohnn a secret all this time. Usually, movies spoil stuff like that in the trailer, sometimes inadvertently.

While the accident that gives him his powers is a little contrived (and quite reminiscent of Sandman's origin in Spider-Man 3), the visual effects are amazing. Like watching a real life version of Portal after he gets his powers.

In fact, if you're paying attention, you might have noticed that some of the tricks Spider-Man uses to navigate Ohnn's increasingly-complex portals bear a striking resemblance to tricks from Portal, most notably when he gains momentum by falling into different holes to shoot himself in the air. Nice touch. The final battle between Spider-Man, Spider-Gwen, and Mysterio as they all tumbled through Ohnn's portals was simply jaw-dropping, showing the sheer creativity of the choreography.

It's a little aggravating that Mysterio gets the shaft through most of the film so they can set up Ohnn for future films, but having said that, without Ohnn's portal abilities, Spider-Gwen never would have crossed over into Peter Parker's universe.

I'm cautiously optimistic about the inclusion of Morlun in the post-credits scene. They seem to be hinting toward an adaptation of Spider-Verse (the fact that Morlun kidnapped Ohnn to force him to open portals to other universes is a good hint), and there have been some unsubstantiated rumors saying that they're going to get Tobey Maguire to return. But I'll believe that when I see it.

All in all, I'm glad that the Amazing Spider-Man movies have found a direction after struggling to figure out what the deal is with Peter's parents.

And yes, the recasting of Harry Osborn was distracting. I have no idea why they hired Wanda Sykes to replace Dane DeHaan, but she delivered a surprisingly good performance.

What about you guys? Do you think the third Amazing Spider-Man film is hit or miss? Feel free to leave a comment below!

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