Spider-Man 3

The final chapter in the Spider-Man trilogy lived up to my expectations. Last Sunday, Annie and I saw Spider-Man 3 and thought it matched or surpassed its predecessors. A few minor plot spoilers follow. As pretty much everyone knows by now, the black Venom suit Spider-Man wears in this version lowers Peter Parker’s inhibitions. Willful power is a dangerous thing. But it makes for such compelling cinema.

The longer Parker wears the black suit, the more selfish he becomes, forgoing responsibility in favor of revenge. I completely disagree with my friend, Joe, when he states that the period where Peter wears the black suit is the worst part of the movie. Part of what makes some superheroes a little annoying is that they act so selflessly so often. When Parker destroys Eddie Brock’s career—the perfectly-cast, Topher Grace—and gets the full-time photography job, I felt a sense of victory for Peter, regardless of his cruelty. And the scenes with Parker walking down the sidewalk and attracting stares of all types, it’s nearly impossible not to smile and appreciate how great he must feel. Yes, his hair does look a little emo, but I think it perfectly suits Parker’s mind frame while wearing the Venom suit.

My only complaint is that Spider-Man 3 does get a little preachier than the first two in the series. It’s never blatant or completely overblown, but we’re reminded of the story’s morals a little too often. Other than that, the film is a well-paced and fitting close to Raimi’s trilogy.