Friday, July 02, 2004

The Passion of the Spiderman

Remember how the first Spiderman had a trailer in which Spidey spun a web between the world trade center towers? Well, imagine if you made a whole movie about that. Basically, this is a remake of the first film, with creepier notes of cultural reference - Spiderman gets beheaded at one point, and they pull his head out from a bag. Or his mask anyway.

Well, in this one the villain's better, the effects are better, but all humor has been stripped from the dialogue. So there are long pauses where the serious movie b-story just kinda drones on. And while it does make some sense, it's a fucking spiderman movie. I am fond of applying a Dave technique to this film: wouldn't this movie be better if Spiderman were dating Lola from Run Lola Run. Then, instead of these long stretches of boredom which just beg you to download the film so you can just watch the action sequences, you'd want to watch the whole movie, because then there'd be Lola running about and screaming and turning into a cartoon and such.

Also, Spiderman doesn't make wise in the movie. He's got one joke, "it's heavy," and that's it, which is a shame. Spiderman's always cracking jokes and shit in the comics. He's not always crushed by existential crisis. The Evil Dead movies are very good at being peppy and funny in a way that Spiderman isn't.

It elicted yawns and derisive comments from the audience I was with. Compared to both Kill Bills, it's really substandard. The worst part is that it's plot-for-plot the first movie.

One nice scene has a creepy passion of the christ reference, which is really off-putting. But then they've got some nice bit where the entire subway car unmasks Spiderman. Oh, and that whole "secret identity" thing doesn't really exist anymore. Mary Jane knows, Aunt May Knows, Doc Ock knows, Norman "Green Goblin 2" Osborn knows, the kid from across the street knows, and an entire subway car knows.

But whatever, Spiderman interacts with the requisitely multi-racial extras nicely. They, some of the only comedy in the movie, are good examples of tokenism.

Probably as good as the hulk, at least in that same league - but I liked the hulk.

No comments: