How The Amazing Spider-Man Can Improve On The Raimi Trilogy

First of all, I’d just like to say that I’m a Sam Raimi Spider-Man fan. The first movie was the first superhero movie I ever saw, and Spider-Man 2 was pretty much the definitive superhero movie for me for eight years (yes, the definitive movie in my eyes is now The Avengers. Keep up), so the trilogy is pretty close to my heart. But over time, I have noticed that there are flaws in Raimi’s trilogy. And I don’t mean ‘God, Christian Bale’s Batman voice sounds a little bit weird’ flaws, I mean ‘none of the Transformers movies have a proper story’ flaws. And I reckon that these flaws can be ironed out in the reboot: The Amazing Spider-Man.

It’s easy to pick on the really, really bad Spider-Man 3, but there are problems with the previous two movies, as well. Mary Jane is portrayed as utterly useless (I mean, seriously: what does she even do apart from scream?). There’s a bit too much crying from everywhere. The Green Goblin’s suit is a bit rubbish. The final battles are a little bit too similar. Yes, overall the first two movies are excellent, but they’re flawed (although the good does outweigh the bad easily).

And sadly, now I have to talk about the movie where the bad not only outweighed the good, it destroyed it. And yes, I am talking about Spider-Man 3: the black (symbiote? Get it?) sheep of the Raimi trilogy. From the gaping plot holes (oh look, how convenient that the symbiote landed right next to the only superhero in the Spider-verse) to Gwen Stacy being transformed into a hollow shell of her comic book self, to the emo dance (Oh god no!), the threequel set the precedents for really awful threequels. Even now, people look at a movie like The Dark Knight Rises and assume that it’ll suck because it’s a threequel: all because of Spider-Man 3.

And then we come to The Amazing Spider-Man. A reboot then even now, when I mention it to someone, they start talking about ‘too soon to make another, will it ever end?’ (Then I show them the second trailer, and they then see my point of view.) Yes, it’s only five years since Spider-Man 3. But TASM doesn’t need to be the pointless ‘cash cow’ reboot: it can be an opportunity to do right what Sam Raimi did wrong.

The pieces are in place for a great movie. Andrew Garfield is a perfect choice for the lead role; not only is he a superb actor anyway, but he’s a lifelong Spider-Man fan. And I mean the comic books, not the movies.  If anyone can be the definitive big-screen Spider-Man, it’s Garfield. Plus, TASM has a great supporting cast: from Emma Stone to Rhys Ifans. It’s much more faithful to the comic books than Raimi’s movies: with Gwen Stacy as the prime love interest (don’t rule out a Mary Jane cameo, but if she has a role in Webb’s movies, she’ll be in the sequel in 2014), the mechanical web shooters. Heck, even the Lizard has his trademark lab coat on for some bits of the movie.

And most of all: Marc Webb is gunning to do what Raimi never even touched upon: make a realistic superhero movie (Well, as realistic as a movie with a guy mutating into a lizard-human hybrid and there being mutated spiders just ready to bite a teenager and give him super-powers can be), a la Batman Begins. Because, let’s be honest: everyone wants to replicate Batman Begins now. Realism is the new escapist – Wait. Did someone just say that The Avengers has already made $300 million? Oh. Well, bang goes my theory.