Film Review: Spider-Man 3


Film: Spider-Man 3


Director: Sam Raimi


Cast: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Thomas Haden Church, Topher Grace


Rating: 3.5/5


Spider-Man is back… only this time far better and a wee bit bad unlike ever before. Spider-Man 3 has action, thrill, drama and a whole lot more. The best part is that you just can’t seem to get enough.


While the earlier films had already established the three major characters, Peter Parker aka Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire), Mary Jane (Kirsten Dunst) and Harry (James Franco), this film moves ahead and addresses the complex web of relationships amongst the three.


Other aspects such as Harry’s urge to settle score with Spider Man, avenging his father’s death and Parker’s search for his uncle’s assassin reaches a new crescendo. And as if this wasn’t enough for Spider-Man, he additionally has to battle it out with Sandman (Thomas Hayden Church) and Venom. What follows is prevalence of the good over evil and spells of lament, regret and sorrow.


While there’s so much going on in the plot, all you can think about is how wonderfully crafted this film is. This flick will have you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. The film is unbelievably slick and sharp. The director laudably gives the first time watchers and those with a short term memory, a recap of what happened in the previous film and all this while the cast credits flash across the screen. Hence no time is wasted in providing you with the all new action and adventure.

A good screenplay is that which gets you involved and respond to the ongoings at the right moments and this film does just that. There isn’t a second that the film leaves you with to question the actions on screen. The cinematic experience is first class and is unrivaled. There is a stylistic cohesiveness that runs through the film and acts as the binding force to the gripping plot.


The approach of handling emotional conflicts and each character’s motive is commendable; this may very well be the reason you choose to watch this film. The level of detailing and justification, where necessary, provides the viewer with a sense of understanding of each character, which is seen in very few films. Moreover each aspect is identifiable yet manages to blend in to make one grand narrative.


The production values are at an all time high. The visual effects and stunts are so remarkably finished, that it leaves you bowled over. The lighting of each character and scene aids perfectly in creating the mood, details that are often overlooked by filmmakers. The special effect is another area that renders the film with being one based on a superhero. It is like watching Spider Man do exactly what he does in the comic strip, the insane camera angles and stunts are way beyond anything one would have seen or imagined. The best part is the fact that it is done with so much conviction that you end up believing every bit of it. The climax and the action scenes send you off on a roller coaster ride… one which you never want to get off.


This film makes for a great case study especially because it is so well scripted that the Spider Man merchandise is brilliantly placed in the backdrop of the film, enforcing the cult status it has achieved. Additionally, if we deconstruct the film, the portrayal of Spider Man against Spider Man (the good versus the evil) would further enforce the super hero status he already possesses, further bolstering the perception of the character’s ability. It also gives the viewer something more as compared to the previous films thus raising the bar to figure out what to expect in the forthcoming film.


One grey area the film has is the poorly written dialogues. The choice of words in certain scenes make you question if you had come to watch a soap. The theatrical nature of the dialogues is perhaps the only bland ingredient in this tasty curry. Lines such as ‘Uncle Ben wouldn’t want us living with revenge in our hearts, it’s like a poison. It can take you over and turn us into something ugly;’ and ‘We’ve all done terrible things to each other, but we have to forgive each other. Or everything;’ leave you wondering where this film is headed. However when the action is back on you forget it all.


Although funny, the sessions of humour that were thrown in seemed out of place. Additionally past the first half Parker’s story seemed to be going on a tangent with an over the top portrayal of his self obsessed character, but soon enough was back on track and the story moved ahead. Questioning of various motives make no sense as all of it is already established in the comic and raising questions turns to a pointless exercise.


On the acting line, each one stays true to their character. Maguire, Dunst and Franco play their roles to the T and their careful and finer expressions like twitching the eyebrow and constricting their facial muscle adds the icing to the brilliant performance. Grace, who so far has not delivered a jaw dropping performance, continues the streak and is strictly OK in this film. The man who outshines everyone is Thomas Haden Church, who seems to have given everything the character required and carries off his role with panache.


This film makes you impatiently wait for Spider-Man 4 in anticipation of what it will have to offer. Spider-Man 3 is a must watch, you seriously cannot afford to miss this.