Editorial: The Best SPIDER-MAN Films to Date (Spoilers Ahead)
So which is your best Spider-Man film? Spider-Man/Peter Parker has had a tough film history. It’s not been easy for the franchise since Spider-Man 3. In 2007, Spider-Man 3 was released. It featured Tobey Maguire‘s last performance as the webslinger and Kirsten Dunst‘s final bow as his adoring love, Mary Jane Watson.
The trouble with Spider-Man 3 was that it tried to do too much. For one, Peter’s best friend, Harry Osborn, became a villain, the new Green Goblin. The writers and director of the film also decided to add some extra players to challenge Peter throughout the film. They began with revealing that Peter’s Uncle Ben was actually murdered by Flint Marko, a thug who steals money in order to help pay for his daughter’s medical treatment. Due to a freak accident, Marko becomes a manipulator of sand and the villain the Sandman.
The film also introduces Eddie Brock, Peter’s rival photographer. Brock’s hatred of Peter transforms him into yet another villain, Venom. He and the Sandman eventually team up against Peter and Harry in a crazy finale. Also, did we mention that Peter was sort of cheating on Mary Jane with Gwen Stacy? All of this made the film overplotted and a tad of a disaster despite the strong actors who appeared in it. The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) rectified things temporarily before The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014) garnered mixed reviews. So, let’s take a look at the best Spider-man and worst of the Spider-Man films:
1.) Captain America: Civil War (2016). While this film is not technically a Spider-Man film, it serves as an introduction into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This portrayal of Peter Parker/Spider-Man is better than all the other Spider-Man portrayals. In this film, Peter Parker is fifteen years old and a high school student. He is starstruck when he meets Tony Stark (Iron Man) and even gets to fight alongside him. And he is always quipping and never quiet. That’s Spidey from the comics, so we’re glad to see Tom Holland playing the character as originally intended.
2.) The Amazing Spider-Man (2012). This might anger some people, but this film is truer to the mythos of Spider-Man than the first three. It actually follows the chronology of Peter Parker’s love interests and villains more truthfully than the other films. Parker starts off dating Gwen Stacy and fighting the Lizard (Dr. Curtis Connors). That’s exactly how the first Spider-Man stories go. While we did not need to see Uncle Ben die yet again in another film, this event produces considerable guilt for the young Peter Parker. Overall, The Amazing Spider-Man is a true and faithful adaptation of the Spider-Man mythos.
3.) The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014). Some people found this film to be extremely controversial. You can see that director Marc Webb wanted to do more with the film and had other ideas for the movie compared to what the studio wanted. However, even though the finished film was a compromise of the studio and director’s shared visions, it is still watchable and enjoyable, particularly the performances of Dane DeHaan and Jamie Foxx. They make good villains, but the complexity offered in the film’s trailers is lacking in the final product. Where is the material about DeHaan’s Harry Osborn, his relationship with his father, and his friendship with Peter Parker? Also, what in the world ever happened to Shailene Woodley‘s Mary Jane Watson?
4.) Spider-Man 2 (2004): Many people praise this as the best Spider-Man film of the original trilogy and one of the best comic book films of all time. You can see why people say that. The film introduces Alfred Molina as prominent villain Dr. Otto Octavius/Doctor Octopus/Doc Ock. Written by Alvin Sargent, the film is deep and complex and makes you relate to the struggles of Doc Ock. You can see his important connection to Peter Parker and how their friendship disintegrates. While not as complex as some later comic book films, it still makes for a good action drama.
5.) Spider-Man (2002). This was the film that started it all. Can you believe a teenage social outcast could be bitten by a spider, become a costumed crimefighter, and fall in love? Well, that’s the plot of the film, and it shows how Peter Parker acquires spider-like super powers and changes his life completely. Tobey Maguire makes audiences believe that alongside the rest of Sam Raimi‘s cast. Sam Raimi was also an interesting choice to make these movies, given that audiences often know him from the comedic horror film The Evil Dead and its successors. Nonetheless, Spider-Man connected very well with audiences and critics alike.
6.) Spider-Man 3 (2007). Yes, this film is the worst Spider-Man film ever made. It’s overplotted and Tobey Maguire is simply not as good in the role of Spider-Man as other actors have been, as some fans prefer Andrew Garfield in the role. To these fans, the film serves as proof of Garfield’s superiority. They claim that Garfield’s Peter Parker would never have turned into a complete jerk, dancing through the streets of New York City and pointing at different women, acting as if he’s some cool guy. Did we forget who Peter Parker was? In many ways, just like the character and actor forget who Peter Parker is, the audience does as well. The villains are right about Peter being a selfish jerk.
Spider-Man/Peter Parker is finally in good hands with Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures working together. The latest adaptation of the Spider-Man, Spider-Man: Homecoming, is an honest and forthright adaptation of the character. It’s a well-done film that reminds us that there are still stories left to tell when the actor portraying him and the studios stick to the original source material. Some may say this is the best Spider-Man film.
Let us know which is your best Spider-Man film to date on the comments below.