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15 Reasons Why Sam Raimi’s First Two Spider-Man Films Were Much Better Than Marc Webb’s

11 May 2014 | Features, Other Lists | by Nick LaMacchia

spiderman amazing spiderman

With the success of Bryan Singer’s X-Men in 2000; the door was opened, and the modern superhero film era began. Fast forward to two years later where Columbia Pictures and Sam Raimi released Spider-Man and it was cemented. Here, in the present, we have the benefit and sometimes dissatisfaction of witnessing our beloved heroes of comic book lore triumphing on the silver screen. 10 years ago Spider-Man 2 was released and is widely regarded as one of the best Superhero films to date, but since the failed Spider-Man 3 and aborted Spider-Man 4; Sony Pictures sought to re-boot the web-slinger in a darker, more gritty light, that would appeal to modern audiences in 2012.

Now, I’m going to throw a pretty good sized SPOILER tag on this one for anyone who hasn’t seen the recently released The Amazing Spider-Man 2 yet. With this article we will compare Marc Webb’s first two Amazing Spider-Man films with Sam Raimi’s first two and why Raimi had it right. I’m going to say again. SPOILERS!!

Spider-Man’s origins are important and Raimi did it all good, but Webb not only did the exact thing in his first film, but kind of re-did it in his second. A hero’s origin is important, it provides the base for the rest of the film and whatever sequels take. In Raimi’s film, Spider-Man makes his choice to stay away from Mary-Jane because she could be hurt, but in Webb’s film, Spider-Man begins his life as a hero by, yes saving the day, but he ignores a dead man’s wish for the safety of his daughter because he was dating her for a little while? We are given a Spider-Man that appeals too much to teenage audiences, rather than a Spider-Man that should appeal to fans of all ages while being a story with teenagers.

 

15. The Villains

spider-man movie villains

Anyone who doesn’t realize by now needs to know that Marc Webb is trying to create the origins of a huge universe of enemies for Spider-Man. It has already been announced that there will be a Venom AND a Sinister Six movie, and the most keen eyed viewer would notice the Venom file in TASM2 when Harry activates the chip his Father gave him. Marc Webb is doing a good job of seeding the foundations of his evil universe, but the choices he is making with the present villains in his films is only allowing them to suffer.

Beginning with Webb’s first film: The Amazing Spider-Man, he chose The Lizard which was alright, (let me admit that I did enjoy TASM) but when it came for the sequel and upping the ante; he chose to include Electro and Green Goblin, among other cameos for upcoming villains in his universe. Webb’s decision was his film’s downfall because with two villains origin stories happening at once, AND Peter Parker as Spider-Man, AND his relationship with Gwen Stacy; it felt stuffed. We were left with a two hour and forty five minute lead up into what is sure to be a pretty epic third installment in Webb’s Spidey universe and some hopefully good villain films, but that’s the point. The existence of the planned extended Spider-Man universe has lead to an ENTIRE film becoming exposition, and… Where was Spider-Man?

Raimi did himself the benefit of beginning his jaunt in NYC with Spider-Man with Green Goblin as his initial and only enemy which provided us with a chance to see Peter Parker become Spider-Man that paralleled Norman Osbourne’s transformation into The Goblin which led to a climax between the two. (Webb’s TASM did something similar but, we’ll get to that) It was also great because it showed us Harry Osbourne from the beginning, and Raimi allowed Harry and Peter’s relationship deteriorate because of Spider-Man from the end of his first film, and into his second. He was able to successfully balance the development of his villains and Peter’s story arc… that is, until the third film.

 

14. The Crane Operators

Spidey_Cops

This is a kind a small reason, but… c’mon. In The Amazing Spider-Man, after a pretty good and darker take on the character; Peter is shot in the leg for no reason at all by the NYPD and is trying to make it to Oscorp at the end of the long street he is on, (which is laden with buildings on either side… by the way) and is fighting along slowly to jump and climb the buildings toward where his beloved Gwen Stacy and The Lizard await for a final showdown. A man whose child was saved by Spider-Man sees this on T.V. mobilizes his construction crew in a really cheesy way to hang the arms of their huge cranes over the street to give Spidey a quick and clear path to swing to Oscorp.

Alright, I get it. Webb wanted to show the city uniting behind Spider-Man as he was struggling, and to show us that Spider-Man needs his city just as much as it needs him… but really? Right after you witness Gwen’s father Captain Stacy remove Peter’s mask and then Peter dispatch all of the cops around him with his head faced down, only to reveal himself to the shotgun toting Captain as his daughters boyfriend, and then grabs his mask to jump away when a dumb officer ignores Stacy’s order to hold his fire and puts a round into Peter’s leg.

We hear a bunch of cheesy workin’ man quotes like “time to put in some overtime” and then see Spider-Man swing across the beams with ease, when 20 minutes later, right before the credits we see him doing the same thing he could have done, and has ALWAYS done: use the damn buildings! Raimi relayed this same point in Spider-Man in a simple and more effective way by having the citizens of NYC chuck whatever they could at Green Goblin as he was trying to save all the kids in the Wire car. Sorry, I hate that crane part.

 

13. Mary-Jane vs. Gwen Stacy

spider-man leading ladies

Let me start off by saying this, I’m not taking anything away from the way that Andrew Garfield or Emma Stone have played Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy, because the chemistry they have together is really great, but lets ask ourselves… is that why we’re all in love with Gwen Stacy? She’s a dream girl, she’s adorable, her and Peter are really perfect together, yada, yada, yada. What I’m asking is if she made the films any better than Raimi’s Spider-Man films.

Mary-Jane Watson is more iconic to a wider audience of Spider-Man media and I really think that Raimi did right by his films by choosing to include her for us all to see as Peter Parker’s first love interest, especially because he handled it better. I’ll be getting into my issues with our current Peter Parker and how he is being handled later but, it became ever more apparent that Gwen’s role in Peter’s life to leave. In TASM Gwen and Peter fall madly in love and are in puppy dog, teenage love the entire time, and I hope by now you have heeded my spoilers warning if you haven’t seen TASM2.

Gwen announces midway through the film that she’s moving to London after breaking up with Peter earlier in the movie after revealing that Peter has been breaking up with her many times since the first film because of his guilt from the death of her father. The whole film plays as more of a romantic comedy than a superhero film between Parker and Stacy and they shove that relationship down your throat during most of the run time that is not devoted to the villains to make Gwen’s death at the climax of the finale more important for Peter.

Raimi developed Peter and Mary-Jane’s relationship slowly, with Peter recognizing that he can’t be with MJ because of his responsibility of the power he has and the damage it almost had caused her. More importantly, he continues this theme into most of the second movie because of that same reason; how can Peter be happy AND be Spider-Man? Yes. He learns this the hard way in TASM2 and it was really well done, but overall; TASM and it’s sequel almost made Gwen Stacy the main character, I mean she almost made Peter move to London… away from New York… could you imagine the internet explosion?

 

12. The Music

I don’t know about you, but music is huge for me while watching a film. It adds so much to the emotion and overall feeling of the entire movie and one of the best things about Raimi’s Spider-Man films was Danny Elfman’s score. Yes, James Horner’s Amazing Spider-Man score was good but it felt kind-of… normal. Elfman is mostly known for his collaborations with Tim Burton, and his weird and Gothic style was a perfect fit for the images and aesthetic for Raimi’s film. I think there was a reason why Horner was replaced with Hollywood wizard Hans Zimmer for TASM2 who made the music more impressive, but it wasn’t his best. Dubstep? Really?

 

11. The Amazing Spider-Man Was Almost A Complete Copy of The First Raimi Film

Marketing for The Amazing Spider-Man kept promising us this whole “Untold Story” thing which ended up being kind of misleading. The build up was cool, and the anticipation was pretty intense, but then we were treated to the same exact story we had seen before with a different villain, a different girl, and a different third act.

Raimi nailed Peter Parker’s origins and how he became Spider-Man, and really; how many ways can you begin Spider-Man? Webb couldn’t avoid the same old origin story in TASM and of course, made it his own variation, but it wasn’t fresh, and it wasn’t new; it was the same old Spider-Man in a different package.

 

10. Uncle Ben & Aunt May

aunt may old vd new

This wouldn’t be a reason until I saw TASM2. In the film, Marc Webb pretty much makes Uncle Ben unimportant. What? Uncle Ben? Yeah. You know, with great power comes great responsibility. In Raimi’s Spider-Man, Uncle Ben and Aunt May both look, and act the part; Uncle Ben dies and burns his messages into the vengeful mind of Peter Parker that ultimately helps him become Spider-Man.

The same thing happens in TASM, and then in TASM2 they kind of ignore it and we witness Peter’s father Richard send his last message to the world from a crashing plane after a daring fight. Well, when Peter finds the message later in the movie, his late Father echoes “great power and responsibility” and in an emotional scene Peter cries and is inspired by his father, thus kind of removing good ol’ Uncle Ben from the seat of inspiration. Uncle Ben is mentioned once or maybe twice in the film casually, compared to Raimi’s films which seat Uncle Ben firmly into the continuity of each.

 

9. The Aesthetic

Admittedly, Marc Webb restored the comic-y aesthetic to the Spidey franchise with The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but in his first film; he seemingly tried to go the darker, more “Nolan” approach to his hero. It kind of worked but in TASM2 he really hit it in the head… when Spider-Man was actually on film.

Raimi’s approach was spot on from the get-go, having the benefit of making his film in a time where studios believed that people weren’t ready for a dark approach to a superhero, and wanted it to be lighter. The resulted with a tone that was perfectly in sync with the feeling of Spider-Man comic books and a comic book in general, with the overacting of Willem Dafoe when he was in his Goblin state, and Peter’s clever little jabs everywhere, just as two examples; you felt like you were watching a comic book. Webb’s first film borrowed too heavily from the aesthetic of Batman Begins to put Peter in a darker world and it didn’t work which made Webb change his Spider-Man by look and feel in his sequel, and it sort of makes it feel like a reboot of a reboot.

 

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  • Dris

    I absolutely agree with you, great analysis!
    One small thing: I really liked the music score of TASM 2, especially Electro’s dubstep fueled theme, it was brilliantly escalating in his scenes, just like his evil persona, fitted perfectly in my opinion.

    • Mufdvr

      you’re an idiot for agreeing with this moron

      • Dris

        wow! calling someone an idiot over the internet with absolutely no argument to back it up.
        You’re such an original badass!

  • Ted Wolf

    Love this list and agree. The main thing I didn’t like in the Raimi universe was the genetic webs. I felt it was important for Peter’s geek side to blossom by creating spidey’s web apparatus.

  • Nick James

    Thanks guys! Good point on the genetic webs, I didn’t even think about that. It sucks because they didn’t build on that side of his persona in the second “Amazing” film. The dubstep played pretty good with Electro’s scenes, I guess I just didn’t expect that from Hans. Especially following up the really great Man of Steel soundtrack.

    • Terry Shannon

      I too didn’t like the “genetic” webs in the first trilogy, but I liked it even less that Peter stole the web formula from Oscorp in TASM. At least Peter designed the shooters. Otherwise, the audience only got to see Peter as some sort of skater slacker instead of the supposed genius he is supposed to be.

  • Marc Berkhouse

    You are on crack, I am a huge spider-man fanboy and looking back at those films with the over cheesy lines and just the over all shitty life peter had I have to say i much preferred the newer films….Especially gwen compared to mary jane. How many times can a girl get in distress and have to be saved by the second film I was so annoyed with the characters.

    • Nick James

      Understandable, and opinions will always differ. My main gripe is with this second film and how Webb handled the love story between Gwen and Peter. I really did like the first Amazing Spider-Man overall, but they really spent way too much time on the love story in the sequel. Not to mention a lack of Spider-Man. Loved alot of parts of the reboot though, and you definitely aren’t wrong!

  • Danielo Venegas Carrasco

    I accept your point of view, but im in total disagree. “The first TASM was a copy of Raimi’s” Man, it is the first story of a saga, and both are based on Stan Lee’s original idea, so OBVIOUSLY they are similar. About the crane operators: “This is a kind a small reason, but…” But do not mention it, then. I liked the first trilogy, i really did. But you have to admit that this new version is superior in characters, backstory, actors and look. I mean, do you actually know that this is a movie based on a comic series, right?

    So, you think that Raimi’s Spiderman was better, that’s cool. But it is your opinion, and for a serious movie site, this is quite subjetive.

    Sorry if my opinion offends you, but we have to be fair, TASM is way much better. Ask Stan Lee himself.

    • Nick James

      Of course it doesn’t offend me. It’s your own opinion and I completely understand. You make a lot of good points and I expected to be disagreed with! I’m definitely not saying thay Raimi’s films were perfect in comparison, and I did enjoy Webb’s films too.

      I didn’t like the look in the first “Amazing” but I’ll agree they nailed it in the second. I’m not entirely sold on the way it was written but I see your point on the story. I’ll admit that I LOVED Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man, but still not so much as Peter Parker.

      I really respect your opinion and thank you for sharing it!

    • John Logo

      That last paragraph, thats the Honest trailer’s words. TASM2, Pete breaks up with Gwen 20 times or something.

    • mo

      I definitely agree with you, not only are the new films much more based on the comics but the crane point was absolutely dumb, if you’re going to talk about that, then you have to talk about spiderman 3, which he neglects to do almost entirely, that movie was “stuffed” as he said about TASM2 but the difference is that marc webb did it right, people that are upset because green goblin “took away” from electro and only had a small amount of time have to realize a few things, #1 they developed a relationship that was completely different between Harry and Peter, but it worked and wasn’t overplayed and then easily fixed by the butler saying that spiderman didn’t kill his dad, TASM2′s harry goblin was all about survival at all costs because he valued himself too much. As for the Mary Jane vs. Gwen point, GWEN was Peter Parker’s first love, read the comics, mary jane was after Gwen died, exactly the way TASM is playing out, not only that, but you have to look at them as a whole series, not as standalone films, TASM and the orginal spiderman have similarities, but the Lizard was an almost exact representation of the first spiderman comic ever, which was about the lizard and his ultimate goal to turn everyone into a lizard because he though it was the next stage of evolution. the part where they had a board of directors that forced him to take it just like in the original was all about tie ins with the second movie. Think about this, the lizard serum was a failure and because it failed it ended up leading to Harry doing whatever it took to find out how to use spiderman’s blood to heal him, the tie ins with his dad have been consistent throughout both movies, yes, it does minimize the role of uncle ben, but that’s because they made Peter’s parents mean something to the greater picture, not because uncle ben was less meaningful. As for the music, #1 that is fully opinion, #2 debstep, or electronic music was the only music that would truly fit electro, who is, to me, the greatest spidey villain to date in the movies, also with that another thing comes into play that i always hated about the original Spiderman movies. In the comics, the villain hardly ever dies, and never dies on a first encounter with Spidey, but they always died, and it was never Spiderman killing them so we never had to have an internal conflict of anyone dying because of him outside of uncle ben, this is the second time that someone has died directly because of Spidey in the new series and no villain has died so far, which allows for movies like the sinister six, which could be one of the greatest decisions for a movie ever made, no one has done a movie based on a team of supervillains, only superheroes, and spiderman is one of the only solo heroes to have to fight against a team of villains. Last point is this. Tobey Maguire was only cast because of his size, he was 10 years too old to play a truly youthful spiderman, and he looked like a nerd, sure, but not like Peter Parker. Andrew Garfield was a perfect choice because he is the right age, and because he fits the build of spiderman. if you go look at any peter parkers, they are all tall, skinny and have a good appearance. Parker wasn’t hated in school by everyone, just picked on by flash. Just because parker was smart doesn’t mean he should be a 5’6 guy that would never have anyones attention. Basically, if you like movies just for movies, then the original spiderman is very close to TASM, not much better, but maybe a little through only the first 2 of each franchise, but when you look big picture and the foundation where it should be, in the comics, The Amazing Spiderman is a clear winner

  • Henry

    How come everyone has a problem with this movie because it just leads to a sequel. Doesn’t all of Disney’s marvel movies lead to the next avengers movie. I thought this was a very great movie. I am just about to turn 20, i was 18 when the first TASM came out. So I can say that TASM Peter is what a nerd is today.

  • Jamie Maloney

    Should HAVE. Shouldn’t HAVE. Could HAVE. Or the contractions Should’ve. Could’ve. It’s distracting and you lose credibility when you keep getting that wrong.

    • Jarrod

      And then there was “should of began”. WHAT THE HELL.

      The author of this piece supposedly has a trilogy of sci-fi novels in the works. For the sake of his readership (and our ever-dumber society) that his editor isn’t a complete idiot.

  • Guest

    This list is a Shit.

  • Jarrod

    “Could of.” “Should of.” “Would of.”
    Could HAVE. Should HAVE. Would HAVE.

    “Should of began”? Should HAVE BEGUN.

    Who the f*ck writes this dreck?

    • Megamiaow

      Same thoughts here. I couldn’t finish reading because of the bad grammar.
      FYI I prefer the new version of spiderman, in almost every aspect.

  • Edwin Guillermo

    Nicely written article, but your usage of “should of”, “could of” instead of “should have” or “could have” is distracting

    • Mufdvr

      this was a poorly written article

    • Nick James

      Thank you for pointing it out! I apologize it was distracting and I’ll correct it in the future!

  • Red Lagoon

    Nice list and reasons, poor use of words! :)

    • Nick James

      Apologies! Hopefully I can do better for you next time!

  • Chuck Johnson

    Raimi’s version does a lot of things better, you mentioned a few of them but they aren’t better overall because of the aesthetic. It is like watching a comic book but in a bad way. Nothing about any of the characters and how they act and interact with each other feels real. Webb excels in that his characters (with the exception of Electro) feel like real people. That and CGI has come a long way, so all the webslinging and Spidey fighting now look so damn cool.

  • Spongebob Squarepants

    My biggest problem with the new series is that Oscorp is responsible for everything and all villains. It’s a joke. Every villian’s origin is basically “some dude has something happen to him at Oscorp”. It’s lazy writing that just proves Sony is ony thinking about blockbuster status and not making a quality film.

    • Spongebob Squarepants

      Don’t get me started on the absolute mess that ASM2 was.

  • Michael Weiss

    I agree on all fronts. The crane sequence was the cheesiest thing in all the films so far. Fit for a boss fight on the game, but not the movie. You should do a list on all the points where Webb is taking from the Nolan and Schumacher movies.

    • Mufdvr

      you’re a moron

    • Nick James

      I like that idea!

    • ScamNewton

      I’d watch the crane sequence on a constant loop for weeks before I watch the Spider-Man dance-capade that was Spider Man 3 again.

      • Michael Weiss

        You and me both. Being better than SM 3 is no achievement though.

  • ScamNewton

    1 – Gwen Stacy was the reason Spider Man became Spider Man. Uncle Ben played a large part, yes, but Gwen’s death is what made him who he is. The fact that it was omitted from Raimi’s films is a huge blunder

    2a – Tobey MacGuire as a better Peter Parker?? You must be sniffing some new kind of glue. Peter Parker was NOT a nerd. He was simply a genius who was given super powers.

    2b – Raimi had natural webbing?? Parker’s brilliance lead him to create his web slingers.

    3 – JJ was Parker’s boss…..when he went to college. Is Parker in college yet? Exactly. Jameson will be there in the future as Peter gets older.

    This entire list was written by someone who was 15 when the original Spider Man movies came out and has no actual knowledge of what Spider Man truly is.

    • Nick James

      Got your point ok JJ. Fair enough, on the genius, but where were those parts of Peter in “Amazing 2″? They kind of got lost in the love story between Peter and Gwen. I mean Gwen had to help him work out how to defeat Electro.

      I see how they made Gwen’s death the genesis of Peter’s transformation, but why did we have to wait 2 films to see that happen?

      You might be right about my lack of Spider-Man knowledge but, you shouldn’t have to be a comic book fan to enjoy a Spider-Man film. While the “Amazing” films might be more aligned with the Canon, I still don’t believe they are superior films. Good points though, I always enjoy learning where I might be wrong!

      • ScamNewton

        You aren’t necessarily wrong, as everyone is entitled to their own opinions. (the last sentence of my original post was more sarcastic than insulting)

        The only problem is that when you compare the films as one better than the other, you do have to factor in the accuracy, to some degree, of the evolution of Spider-Man.

        MJ was not a part of Peter’s life until well into the story. So far, Webb’s go ’round has been much more accurate and that’s why it gets more liking. Aside from Uncle Ben, Capt Stacy dies first in the comics – Capt Stacy dies first in the movie. Gwen dies second in the comics – Gwen dies second in the movie. Peter’s web slingers are also (I’ll admit as a Spider-Man nerd) a detail that helps to demonstrate the genius that is Peter Parker.

        The Raimi films, the first two at least, were not awful or bad by any means. They just had a few MAJOR errors that turned Spider-Man nerds like myself away. Gwen debuting as a science partner in the THIRD movie was appalling to Spider-Man fans.

        Also, Raimi’s power ranger suit that he put on the Green Goblin and total destruction of Venom didn’t help anything, either.

        I’m not saying remotely that the Webb versions are without controversy. It got all weird with Peter’s parents and then there’s the Uncle Ben mess and the Edward Nygma/Riddler recycle of Electro from Batman Forever.

        Each round of Spider-Man films has had flaws, no doubt. But, to this point, I’d have to say they’re both equally as entertaining.

        • Marcos Aguilera
          • Marcos Aguilera

            Gwen was not a part of Peter’s life until well he became spider-man and never knew his secret identity

          • BTW

            He said Marc Webb’s version has been more accurate, putz. Prove him wrong.

          • Marcos Aguilera

            I am ahuge fan of spider-man and here are the reasons (besides the ugly costume with yellow eyes, no belt and blue hands) why “the amazing spider -man” (mark webb movie) is not comic accurate , All those changes made by Marc Webb (the director) regard the mainstream marvel universe ,altought it is true that Peter met Gwen before Mary Jane , peter did not know gwen before being bitten by the radioactive spider , also in the comic ( 616 or mainstream universe and 1610 or ultimate universe) the spider bites Peter in hand,

            [img]https://scontent-b-lax.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/t1.0-9/10001524_263212337186237_9070721283424968966_n.jpg[/img]

            [img]https://scontent-a-lax.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc1/t1.0-9/1907291_263214977185973_8400923892734804232_n.jpg[/img]

            in the Webb film peter was bitten in the neck. In comics ( 616 and 1610 universes ) Peter becomes wrestler before he turned super hero ,

            [img]https://scontent-a-lax.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/t1.0-9/10150771_263214783852659_3970111856685362408_n.jpg[/img]

            [img]https://fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/t1.0-9/10174876_263215103852627_6465495526200627651_n.jpg[/img]

            peter parker never was a wrestler in Webb movie, in this version peter only makes a kind of prototype costume with a beret and sunglasses ( so no one knows who is the man in the ski mask ? ) . In the comics Peter is considered a genius ( 616 and 1610 universes ), in webb’s view their teachers said Webb could be retarded and also the teachers complain about he is always skating in the halls. In comics ( universes 616 and 1610 ) Peter’s father: Richard Parker worked for SHIELD in “the amazing spider -man” working for OSCORP . By the way where is John Jonah Jameson in “the amazing spider -man” ? , If anyone has been a headache for spidey despite not having superpowers is JJJ

            [img]http://www.toplessrobot.com/o-no-j-jonah-jameson-in-marc-webb-s-spider-man.jpg[/img]

            In the 616 universe Gwen never knew Peter Parker is Spider-Man and blames him for the death of his father, in the ultimate universe Gwen hates spider -man, because a criminal disguised as Spider-Man killed his father and that hatred continued even after the criminal confesses to be the murder of the father of Gwen after Gwen discover peter identity as spider-Man, after she moves to live with aunt May . In the comics in 616 continuity George Stacy is allied spider -man , indeed he tried that the public has a better image of the web-head , and the ultimate George Stacy, who is called John Stacy , although not a fan of spider -man admire what he does for the city. In the version of Webb, George Stacy hates spider-Man

    • BTW

      You’re awesome, and so got-damned right. Thank you for speaking up!

  • Mufdvr

    the writer of this article is a fucken moron and needs to read a comic. this was the stupidest thing i have read and if you agree with him you’re a fucken retard as well

    • Nick James

      I may not be as much of a Spider-Man comic fan, but this list was specific to comparing the two films. You shouldn’t have to be a comic book fan to enjoy a Spider-Man film. The new films might be more in line with the Canon but weren’t better in comparison. I’m sorry this wasn’t more enjoyable for you!

      • Mufdvr

        the newer spiderman movies are much better than the first set to come out. the reason i said this moron needs to read a comic cause he mention things that were comic based and doesnt know what hes talking about

  • Rick Lima

    Raimi’s saga is better under some point of view, like musics, villain and general direction quality; Webb still makes some newbie errors, preatty easy to avoid, but that’s it.
    That said, TASM2 is really the most “spidermanness” (let me pass it) movie I ever seen, with teenager who actually look as.. teenager, a love story which is pleasant but not oversized (like SM3), a nice dose of (not ridicoulus) humor (like SM2) and last but nont least a credible Peter Parker, someone you can really believe as a possible superhero (Tobey was nice as nerd, but with the mask on your face he completely disappeard).
    For all these reasons my idea is that as movies, Raimi #2 are still the best, but talking about Spider-Man movies, Webb 2nd installment has not competitors

  • Ben Lundsten

    I want to commend you for such a bold post. Sadly I find myself agreeing with some of your comments even though I didn’t want to admit it. ;) Below are a few of my opinions on what might not have been said already (which are worth nothing of course, but this is fun right!)

    When it comes to advancing Peter’s character sooner in the films, it makes sense if there are going to be 3 films in TASM series, but from what I’ve read there are at least 4 in the works. This leaves some more time for Peter to develop his relationship with being Spider-Man (but I agree more emphasis on relationships outside of Mary would create more impactful moments with characters such as Harry, but would it have been as meaningful when she dies then?).

    I completely agree with overdoing it with the TASM2 villain origins. The movie is good, but still has its missteps and this is a big one. It feels more like a directors extended cut than a theatrical release with all its subplots.

    As far as the Toby being a better choice or portrayal than Andrew, I have to say this one made me sick to my stomach. Toby Maguire didn’t do it for me even back when it first came out. When it comes to film and characters that connect with the audience and leave a memorable mark on the viewer its all about subtlety and that is something I think Toby Maguire lacks (sorry Toby). This is where Garfield shines. Sure we can argue about the character of Peter all day and how nerdy or not nerdy he was, but that is up to the writers and directors. As far as actors, if they chose to, Garfield would have played a WAY better nerd/sympathetic character if that was the role he had been given. Hands down.

    Finally I wanted to say I really appreciate how politely you respond (and the fact that you respond) to comments. Something lacking on a lot of review/”professional” websites.

  • Dee Zamoranos

    so you’re saying is a movie based on spiderman is better than a spiderman movie? and the cranes are made it funny though.

  • Rhov Rox

    sorry TASM fanboys THIS is a perfect list.. watching TASM didn’t leave a mark on my head.. after watching it in the cinema it’s like i forgot i watched a movie.. though TASM2 is good.. here’s my list.
    top 5- spiderman 3
    top 4-TASM
    top 3-TASM 2
    top 2- spiderman 1
    top 1- spiderman 2..
    agree?

    • cmack510

      perfect

    • Marcos Aguilera

      agree

    • BTW

      TASM2 better than TASM? Hell no. I agree that it was way too stuffed and almost reached Spiderman 3 level with too many bad guys and a lack of focus on solid storytelling.

      Toby Maguire was/still is a doofus; Andrew Garfield does a much better job of being a believable superhero, as well as affable geek at school. His and Emma Stone’s chemistry and acting abilities far surpass Toby Maguire’s AND Kirsten Dunst’s.

      Spiderman 3 is stricken from the record, because it shouldn’t even be acknowledged. That being said, the better list is:

      4. TASM 2
      3. Spiderman 1
      2. Spiderman 2
      1. TASM

  • Noel Santos Espino

    Raimi’s Spider-man is one of, if not the best super-hero film ever made, the story and casting, Kirsten Dunst and Tobey Maguire, perfect pair! I absolutely agree with your thoughts… :)

  • @mandraquex3000

    instead of rehashing the spiderman they had already done, I don’t see why they couldn’t have tried oh i don’t know ANYTHING ELSE. Try something different. There are several iterations of spiderman that would be LITERALLY amazing on the big screen. Heck, instead of “rebooting” the franchise, they could have just continued the spiderman story with toby macguire but recast whoever didn’t want to come back, I’m sure the Darren Effect would have kicked in eventually. And if reboot is needed, they could have done a drastic move from one of the stories to make it a cliffhanger leading to the next film, like spiderman’s genetic mutation becomes unstable and he grows four extra arms at the end of the film. (I think “The Six Arm Saga”) Then later in the next film, he becomes the spider monster.

    You have so many choices that could be done either flat out or altered slightly to “satisfy audiences” (as one might put it); spiderman 2099, spiderman 2211 also, spiderman unlimited, spiderman: reign…

    but, movie studios just did the old reliable “get old script, replace old actors with new, rinse, repeat.”

  • Aaron Kristoffer

    Webb’s movie is based on tge comic book The amazing spiderman. Thats how simple it is… raimi’s far from rhe comic book. Ilike web’s version more than thd other simply becauase it tackles more information on spiderman esp. Why the spider bite only works for him. Raimi’s version is more fun but web’s version is more classy

    • Marcos Aguilera

      In the comics richard parker did not work for oscorp, in the comics JJ appears before gwen, in the comics peter met gwen many time after he became spider-man and gwen never knew spider-man identity… I could go on the whole day

  • Musikonica

    I agree with a lot of this list. I really hated how Harry was introduced in TASM2. And then quickly again, when he comes to attack Spider-man as the Green Goblin. The relationship between Parker and Stacy was pounded deep into our minds, the Goblin really didn’t get any of that. Just a quick, meaningless kill for the sake of it.
    I was happy when I first heard Mary Jane was cut out to keep for the third because I figured this would mean they wanted to have some time to kill Stacy right.

  • Jeffrey Westhoff

    I agree with you on most points, except that I think you go too easy on the Webb movies. What does bother me is that you blame “Spider-Man 3″ on Raimi. It wasn’t the movie he wanted to make. After letting Raimi have his way with “Spider-Man 2″ (he resisted efforts to include the Black Cat) and producing a masterpiece, Sony and producer Avi Arad interfered mightily on “Spider-Man 3″ and insisted on additional villains because they wanted to spin Venom off into his own series. Unfortunately Arad is still calling the shots on the Spider-Man movies and he is still making the same mistakes of excess, but this time he has a director he can push around.

  • nigel

    i like the amazing than the first 3 spiderman cause I hated the origin and amazing was the closest to what spiderman is. I’m a marvel fanboy and we all have our own opinions so I’m not hatin or anything! haha PEACE!

  • bitterboyblue

    I’m just a fan of cinema so maybe you can clear it up for me. Does the director really have control over the issues you mentioned? Like which villain is included in the film? It seems to me that that would be decided on even before hiring the director, no? Again this is an assumption so any info on it would help.

    • LordDarque

      It really depends. If you are talking about your average movie then the Director has final say over everything on the creative side. However in a franchise film the Producers have a lot more control.

  • LordDarque

    Brilliant article. Very well done.

    However you seem to ignore the well known fact that Spider-Man 3 turned out like it did because of the Producers not Sam. He wanted Vulture and Sandman. Two characters he knew well. He was forced to put in Venom. The moron producers traded Ben freaking Kingsley for Topher Grace.

    Also calling a movie that made $900 million a failure is just wrong. It displeased a lot of fans and certainly had problems but it still entertained.

  • Kevin Christopher Jesse

    I’m going to ignore the fact that TASM 1 was basically just Raimi’s first Spiderman with all the life and joy and vibrance sucked out and talk about the part that really bugged me in TASM 1.

    There is a scene where Spiderman goes down into the sewer and fights with the lizard. He gets torn up pretty badly, and plunges into the water multiple times.

    After this, he heads on over to Gwen Stacy’s place, breaks into her bedroom, and waits around for her. I was gagging throughout this scene. PETER YOU ARE COVERED IN HUMAN SHIT AND PISS WHY ARE YOU SITTING IN GWEN’S CHAIR. They almost fucking KISS during this scene and that would have capped it for me. I would have puked outright. Also, Peter is covered in open, gaping wounds left by the lizard. He is literally just sitting around macking on Gwen with open gashes that are definitely definitely definitely exposed to human shit.

    Yo for a super genius Pete you sure seem to have not heard of EVERY SINGLE DISEASE KNOWN TO MAN.

  • LunaEros

    Nick, you are a critic GOD!
    You are the first reviewer of all the Spidey films that seems to have got it right. All the others seem to think Webb’s take is world’s better than Raimi’s and they’re WRONG.
    Raimi had THE perfect cast with Peter, MJ, Norman, Harry and Jonah.
    ESPECIALLY Peter. And the way Peter was written was perfect as well as MJ being his love interest which is the girlfriend that’s MOST remembered.
    The ONLY thing that Webb did better in the origin was Peter’s web slingers.
    In the original origin from the comics Peter designed his web shooters himself.
    Raimi gave him silk glands in his wrists which I thought was a really cool take on it but it’s still not correct according to the comics.

    PLEASE don’t ever take down this article because I’m bookmarking it and am going to use it as ammunition on any TASM praising or SM1, 2, 3 hating comments I see in the future.

    Fantastic article, Nick.

  • http://www.glitternight.com/liberals-and-conservatives Balladeer

    The person throwing the biggest fit about the comic book continuity must be basing their opinion on some of the comic book reboots not on the original Spider-Man canon. They mentioned several things that were entirely wrong. They may want to consider that before claiming the author of a thoughtful piece and his readers are “fucken” retarded.

  • Enrique Aviles

    You missed the best reason of all: Bruce Campbell character

  • Bob858

    I disagree with you on the fact of the love interest and of the actor of Spiderman/Peter Parker. Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy was way better than Kirsten Dunst as Mary Jane. We saw Gwen’s likes, dislikes. We saw that Gwen was more than just a damsel in distress. And as a bonus, she actually helped out Spidey in both of his climatic battles, except the one with the Green Goblin, but for those who saw the movie will know why. Andrew Garfield played a pretty good Peter, but I’ll admit Tobey did better. But Andrew played a way better Spiderman as he made jokes and had clever banter. Overall, Andrew was better, and his chemistry with Emma made the ASM series have great character development between both their respective characters. As a movie, TASM is kinda weak story telling wise, but is strong at giving character development to its most important characters like Peter, Gwen, and Harry.

  • Alyxwrites

    I just wanted to get in on this and I have to say that I found myself agreeing with some of your points. Mainly about how the villains and Harry was handled and a few other things. But I don’t want to get too much into that because like you, my knowledge of Spider-Man isn’t all knowing from reading the comics. I have read some comics, I have done research as he is my favorite superhero but by no means am I an expert. With that said, I like the first three Spider-Man movies, especially the 2nd, the 3rd, I don’t particularly care for but I don’t hate it, it was just a bad movie is all.

    After the first Spider-Man, I could not stand Mary-Jane, from what I read about her and how she was portrayed in the Amazing Spider-Man cartoons I watched back in the 90s, she was not as annoying as Kirsten Dunst played her. I like the actress and I like the character and they were a good fit in the first movie but after that, it was time to move on, and then with Gwen showing up in the 3rd movie? I mean, what? She is supposed to die. That’s why I find myself gravitating more towards Emma Stone’s Gwen Stacey now. I love Stone anyway but she plays Gwen with this genuine bravery, compassion and sass that Kirsten never really gave MJ. She had her moments but it was not consistent.

    I don’t dislike Tobey Maguire as Peter Parker/Spider-Man at ALL. I enjoy watching him and every time they come on, I’m there… however, I think Andrew Garfield is a much better choice as both Peter and Spidey. I don’t think he was portraying Peter as a “cool genius” but more of a “loner who is also a genius”. Just watching him put together his webbing, the suit, to see him actually THINKING even when he was Spider-Man (TASM2 really showed that when he and Gwen were working together to defeat Electro) was awesome. The Raimi films never really showed that. Even though Spider-Man is his alter ego, he still was a genius which we never got see that with Tobey. Organic web shooters really threw me and I was young when I first saw the movie… that takes away from the fact that when he runs out of webbing, when they’re crushed (IE Lizard in TASM) he has to use his brain to figure out another way. I think Andrew played him as a loner, who was also a genius, who had personal issues, who was sarcastic, witty and awkward and when he became Spider-Man (after he had a wake up call) he was still all of those things but he just hid it better because he was wearing a mask. That’s why I prefer Garfield.

    I have to say I agree though about Harry and the villains. I love James Franco as Harry (swoon worthy) but after watching Dane Dehaan, I really wish he was in the first TASM too so he could have gotten more history and screen time. He’s an awesome actor, they missed out on that at first so I agree about that. Yes, as comical, cheesy and hammy as Green Goblin was in Spider-Man, it was handled better and I wish Lizard was handled better than what he was. He was a sympathetic character who I still felt bad for but his reasons and all of that was muddled (He left his rotating slideshow plans on his computer? lol) so yeah agree on that point. I thought Electro was handled better and he was actually pretty awesome, I really enjoyed watching his scenes.

    I don’t want to write too much but I think there needs to be an extended version, a lot of spots from the trailers were not in the movie. I have been reading a LOT that there were loads of scenes (including all of the MJ scenes) removed. If they were kept, it might have helped TASM2 more. But that’s my two cents.

  • Mac Ademix

    Yea but like…Spider Man 3 was hot dog shit. Webb would have to have his baby child spit up on the lens to shoot a worse movie.

  • Horia Constantinescu

    You know that “the Amazing Spider-man” is presenting Peter Parker’s life as a high school boy, right? So he is still immature and he can’t be the real Spider-man. In Raimi’s Spiderman, Paker is almost a grown-up. You have a few good points, but in the end, this article is useless.

  • BettyCroc

    I really tried to get into the TASM movies but I just can’t. I thought a lot of the characters were portrayed poorly, the storyline was rushed, and the relationships between certain characters (like peter/harry) weren’t given enough emphasis while some (peter/gwen) were given too much. Everyone says TASM is better because it’s more true to the comics, but really there were a lot of inaccuracies in both series of spider-man movies. I thought the original movies (excluding SM3) had an overall better cast and I felt like each character was really important to the development of the story. Not to mention the legendary performances of those who played JJ and Norman (among others). TASM 1 had a good cast, but again, I didn’t like the portrayal of some characters (mostly Peter). TASM 2 most of the acting in my opinion was bad, and the only one who impressed me was Jamie Foxx who at least looked like he was trying. Anyways, just my opinion. I would also like to say I was really young when the first movie came out (forgot what year but I was like 12 yrs old) and I loved it so much I saw it 3 times at the movie theater. If TASM came out when I was a kid I might be writing this extensive comment about why I don’t like the Tobey Macguire series. Also, as a kid I hadn’t read the comics yet so things like the organic webbing didn’t bother me. Now that I have read the comics I understand but still love the first series more. Well yeah, that about sums it up for my rant I know it was all over the place but I would like to thank the author of this article, you made many great points and I’m sorry some people have to be d-bags about it and get all butthurt.

    • BettyCroc

      I didn’t mean to say SM3 had a bad cast just that I’m not including it when I praise the “original spider-man movies”

  • Tito Piccolo

    Toby sucks

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  • Manoj Varughese

    Sony Pictures’s greed led to the downfall. Too much pressure and less input.