Coming to home video November 9th
It must be late October and early November, when the summer’s comic book adaptations hit home video. I am a Spider-man fan, as a child it was my favorite comic book and I loved the Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire first two adaptations of the comic book. But, even the most die-hard fan like me will admit how bad the 3rd one was about 5 years ago. That being said, when I first heard about the reboot, I was not the most excited about it, but once the film got started I saw how wrong I was. Like Raimi’s vision, this one took an actor who was not the obvious first choice any of us would have wanted, and made him believable. Like Tobey, Garfield really captures Peter Parker and really does a fantastic job. This one does not go the Mary Jane route; we get the love interest of Gwen Stacy who is played by Emma Stone, and again another odd choice that really captured the spirit of the comic book and worked. Now, if you are thinking this film is a scene by scene reboot of the 2002 Maguire film, you would be sort of right. The film touches on some of the ideals that Raimi did, but also put a slant on them, like how Peter turns to Spider-man, and how he actually gets bit by the spider for starters. This time, we get a darker feel to the hero, but yet a more comical one as well. This film decided that Maguire played it straight, but Garfield has to have a personality, a sense of humor and it was a welcome change of pace. The film has a villain of course, and this time it is a reluctant Dr. Curt Connors, who works for Oscorp who at one time was a partner with Peter’s father, and thru an equation that Peter’s dad developed which crosses species genetics, Dr. Curt turns into Lizard and is out to make a world without weakness.
Now while yes this is a reboot and another origin story of a film that only came out less than a decade ago, I really liked it and dare I say I enjoyed Garfield more in this then Tobey in the 2002 film. Garfield seems to have more depth and likability to his Peter, and the actions scenes were very well done, and blew the 2002 stuff away. Where Maguire felt more rushed in the character and story, this time out the film has a pace that characters are being built and the action scenes get to play out and breath and do not feel rushed it is so well done, the story telling, the characters, and the final thirty minutes that packed such an emotional punch. You know you will get the confrontation with The Lizard and Spidey, but as much as I love the action. I really loved the cat and mouse game of Peter and the Doctor, especially when Peter kept asking questions about how to find a reptile and stop one. While no offense to Dafoe and Tobey, but they did not have this kind of chemistry on-screen to sell the action scenes or dialogue. Also Denis Leary as Captain Stacy, who is also Gwen’s dad was such a surprise in this film. Leary really shined like Oldman did in the Batman films, and to know that they are already gearing up for a sequel has me so hopeful that Spider-man will keep on living on. Now, that being said Spiderman 2 will be a hard film to top, almost impossible I pray they do not go for a reboot of that, and try to push this out into new territory. All in all, Spider-man was a very good film and Garfield is a great Peter Parker.
8.5 out of 10