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Spider-Man 3 (PG-13)





Release Date: May 4th, 2007 by Columbia Pictures.
The Cast: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Thomas Haden Church, Topher Grace, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rosemary Harris, J.K. Simmons, James Cromwell, Theresa Russell, Dylan Baker, Bill Nunn, Bruce Campbell, Elizabeth Banks, Cliff Robertson.
Directed by Sam Raimi.

BASIC PREMISE: Spider-Man (Maguire) fights the Sandman (Church), the New Goblin (Franco) and Venom (Grace), while trying to win back Mary Jane Watson (Dunst), the love of his life.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Overstuffed with three villains, Spider-Man 3 still manages to be entertaining, although not nearly as absorbing as the first Spider-Man. The mixture of comedy, drama and romance along with action feels a bit uneven, especially during a music number when Mary Jane dances in the kitchen with Harry, a.k.a., the New Goblin. In terms of plot, there arenít any real surprises other than a twist later in the third act. Peter Parker, a.k.a. Spider-Man, wants to marry Mary Jane and doesnít know that she got fired from a theatrical show after poor reviews, so sheís in a bad mood. A mysterious gooey substance clings onto him and makes him more aggressive. Meanwhile, he publicly kisses a sexy woman, Gwen Stacy (Howard), in his trademark upside-down kiss, which turns off Mary Jane and leads her to date Harry instead. Fortunately, despite all these awkward subplots, director Sam Raimi maintains a fast pace and picks up the action and special effects enough so that youíre never really bored. The best new villain is Sandman and the fight sequences with him through the streets feel exhilarating. Venomís action scenes arenít that exciting, though. Itís thrilling to watch Venom, Sandman, the New Goblin and Spider-Man fight in the final scene. If you walk into Spider-Man 3 expecting to be surprised or refreshed, youíll end up disappointed by the unfocused, somewhat awkward plot. However, at least it feels entertaining and has more thrilling action scenes and cool special effects than last yearís very awkward and dull Superman Returns.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: None is required or desired.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None, as long as you suspend your disbelief.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 1

IN A NUTSHELL: Thrilling action sequences and dazzling special effects more than compensates for an unfocused plot with some awkward scenes. Not as absorbing, surprising or re-watchable as the first Spider-Man, but nonetheless entertaining.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater


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