Tag Archives: Spider-man

My Spider Sense is Tingling!

The web is currently twitching with news of everyone’s favourite web-slinger. The release online of pictures of Andrew Garfield as the new Spider-man has given us our first taste of what Sony’s rebooted franchise has in store. And judging by the demeanour of Garfield in the picture, it’s looking like Spidey may be heading for the sort of dark, brooding arena usually reserved for billionaire playboys with bat fixations. Not necessarily a bad thing, but a far cry from the tone set by Sam Raimi’s trilogy, which adopted the brightly coloured tones of a comic book.

Despite my inherent distaste for spiders, a distaste which used to be a cold fear, I’ve been a fan of Peter Parker and his alter ego since childhood. Unlike Batman, Superman or Captain America, Spider-man was someone I could relate to; he struggled through real life, he was a bit dorky (Clark Kent was just pretending) and he was flat broke. Here was a superhero who was one of us. I always liked that about him.

Sam Raimi’s first Spider-man movie was a great attempt to translate the superhero for cinema, after a long wait for special effects to reach a point where a man swinging around New York on webs could be done without looking crap. If you want an example of how limited effects can ruin the idea, look no further than the awful movie and TV series starring Nicholas Hammond in the 70s. Rarely has a guy dressed up in a daft costume looked so much like a guy dressed up in a daft costume. Oh dear Lord, it sucked so bad. He didn’t even have webs, for crying out loud, he had ropes! Ropes! And a utility belt! He was Rappelling-man. Fail! Anyway, I’m drifting from the point.

Reaction to the new look and new actor has been mixed. The new costume has some minor alterations, most notably the spider logo, but I’m pretty sure the state of it is more to do with recent wear and tear than Parker’s personal hygiene. Some have been making derogatory noises about Garfield’s lack of bulk and muscle, writing him off as too skinny. This is missing the point since Peter Parker was never Mr. Universe, anyway. He was a wimpy kid who just happened to have super-strength. So, technically, Garfield is a much better fit for Spidey than the stocky, gym-enhanced Tobey Maguire ever was. Truth be told, while I liked Raimi’s trilogy a great deal, I never 100% took to Maguire as either Spidey or Peter Parker. Aside from the fact that he’s built like the short guy who always makes trouble in bars, he was a little too whiny and a little too bratty for my tastes. Most of the time I just wanted to smack his head and tell him to stop pouting. I’m pretty sure I never had that reaction to the comic books.

The new movie will take the story back to Peter Parker’s transformation into Spider-man, and reports seem to indicate that it will stick more closely to the original comics than its three predecessors, with the character of Gwen Stacey, who made a brief appearance in Spider-man 3, taking centre-stage. Director Marc Webb (you couldn’t make this stuff up) has the excellent 500 Days of Summer to his name, which inspires confidence. Add to that Garfield’s impressive turn in The Social Network and this could be the Spider-man movie that actually gets everything right.

Usually, when I hear the word ‘reboot’ used in connection to a movie franchise I reach for my gun. For ‘reboot’ read ‘cash-in’. But it worked for Christopher Nolan and Batman, and I have the feeling it’s going to work for Marc Webb and Spider-man, too. I just have one request for the new franchise. Can we have a bit more Spider-man and a bit less Peter Parker this time?

Here’s Andrew Garfield as the friendly, neighbourhood guy in a tight suit.

Andrew Garfield as Spider-man. Lean, mean and...something else that rhymes with ean. Give me a break, it's been a long week.

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31-Day Movie Meme. In 1 Day.

This is a Meme that has been doing the movie blog rounds. Okay, it’s supposed to be drawn out over 31 days but, partially because I don’t have the time and partially because I’m like a kid on Christmas morning who wants to open all his presents right now, I’m going to do this in one swoop. Join in!

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DAY 1: A SEQUEL THAT SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN MADE

Saw II.

That, and every subsequent Saw movie. The first one was clever, chilling and well executed. The rest have been a steady plopping of tedious, repetitive turds.

DAY 2: A MOVIE MORE PEOPLE SHOULD SEE

The Corporation.

Everyone should see it. A documentary scarier than any horror movie.

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DAY 3: FAVOURITE OSCAR-NOMINATED MOVIE FROM THE MOST RECENT BALLOT

Up in the Air.

One of the best movies of the year.

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DAY 4: A MOVIE THAT MAKES YOU LAUGH EVERY TIME

Withnail and I.

“We’ve gone on holiday by mistake.”

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DAY 5: A MOVIE THAT YOU LOATHE

Van Helsing.

A travesty. Stephen Sommers manages to piss on every classic Universal monster in one movie. Not even Kate Beckinsale in tight leather can save this abomination.

DAY 6: A MOVIE THAT MAKES YOU CRY EVERY TIME

V For Vendetta.

Valerie’s story, written for Natalie Portman to find in her cell, gets me every time.

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DAY 7: LEAST FAVOURITE MOVIE BY A FAVOURITE ACTOR

America’s Sweethearts.

What was John Cusack thinking?

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DAY 8: A MOVIE THAT SHOULD BE REQUIRED HIGH SCHOOL VIEWING

Battle Royale.

This is what we have in mind for you, you little bastards.

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DAY 9: BEST SCENE EVER

Raiders of the Lost Ark.

:-P The opening scene. Spiders, Golden idol, rolling boulder, Alfred Molina and Spielberg doing what he does best.


DAY 10: A MOVIE YOU NEVER EXPECTED TO LIKE BUT LOVED

Sherlock Holmes. I’m a big Sherlock Holmes fan so I was sceptical about Downey Jr. (who looks nothing like the character) and Guy Ritchie (who hadn’t made a movie I liked until this) doing a decent job of this. Kudos to them for making it work and capturing the spirit of stories.

DAY 11: A MOVIE THAT DISAPPOINTED YOU

The Expendables.

Big disappointment, and I wasn’t even expecting that much. Jeez.

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DAY 12: BEST SOUNDTRACK/BACKGROUND MUSIC IN A SCENE

Kick-Ass.

The Banana Splits theme (Tra La La song) playing while 10 year-old Hit Girl slices up a roomful of bad guys. Laughed my ass off!

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DAY 13: FAVOURITE ANIMATED MOVIE

Ratatouille.

I never imagined a story about a rat who loves cooking could be so utterly enjoyable.

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DAY 14: FAVOURITE FILM IN BLACK AND WHITE

Goodnight and Good Luck.

Clooney’s second movie looked to the past to comment on the present. Brilliant.

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DAY 15: BEST MUSICAL

Once.

Not sure if it really qualifies as a musical or not. But I loved it.

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DAY 16: YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE MOVIE

Charlie’s Angels.

Shut up.

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DAY 17: FAVOURITE SERIES OF RELATED MOVIES

The Bourne trilogy.

The only franchise that gets better with each movie.

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DAY 18: FAVOURITE TITLE SEQUENCE

Se7en.

See my last post for more details.

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DAY 19: BEST MOVIE CAST

Wonder Boys.

Michael Douglas, Robert Downey Jr. and Frances McDormand for a start. Yum.

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DAY 20: FAVOURITE KISS

Spider-man.

The upside-down kiss in the rain. Makes me want to pull on my tight spandex.

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DAY 21: FAVOURITE ROMANTIC COUPLE

The Fisher King.

Robin Williams and Amanda Plummer. Awwww.

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DAY 22: FAVOURITE FINAL SCENE/LINE

The Godfather: Part III.

Michael Corleone dies alone and tortured by the life he royally screwed up.

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DAY 23: BEST EXPLOSION/ACTION SEQUENCE

The Matrix.

The lobby shoot-out scene, which probably would have been three minutes shorter in normal speed.

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DAY 24: QUOTE YOU USE MOST OFTEN

The Big Lebowski.

“Lotta strands in ol’ duder’s head.”

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DAY 25: A MOVIE YOU PLAN ON WATCHING

Inception.

Still haven’t seen it and it’s getting harder and harder to avoid the spoilers.

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DAY 26: FREAKISHLY WEIRD MOVIE ENDING

Memento.

The ending is at the beginning. But…but…but….

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DAY 27: BEST VILLAIN

The Joker.

Heath Ledger nails the iconic character.  And, no, it’s not a sympathy vote.

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DAY 28: MOST OVER-HYPED MOVIE

Avatar.

Dances with Pixels. In 3D. Yay.

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DAY 29: MOVIE YOU HAVE WATCHED MORE THAN TEN TIMES

Jaws.

Never gets boring. Never. Not ever. And never will. Amen.

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DAY 30: SADDEST DEATH SCENE

Million Dollar Baby.

So utterly, uncompromisingly sad that even Clint Eastwood cries. I don’t stand a chance.

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DAY 31: SCENE THAT MADE YOU STAND UP AND CHEER

The Contender.

Joan Allen’s courageous Senator Hanson finally sticks it to Republican puritan Shelley Runyon (Gary Oldman) and becomes Vice President. Yay!