The Amazing Spider-Man 2

March 26, 2014

[SOM #86]

This is the one we've been rounding up to. All the stops are pulled out and we are in full meta mode this time round. 

01.38: We begin with a review from Sharon and myself, zeroing in on what drove us crazy about the film's structure and character development but closing out with what we really loved about it despite so much holding the movie back. 

51.45: With Bob Chipman, AKA MovieBob from The Escapist as our guest we discuss the possible futures of Spider-Man. This was a match-up a lot of people were angling for, but we chose not to butt heads over why we do or don't engage with the Webb or Raimi movie series'. Instead we focused on what we have in common which is that all three of us want the Amazing series to stop right this very minute. 

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The Amazing Spider-Man

March 25, 2014

[SOM #85]

This is the first of two of the toughest movies we have ever had to review. With so much love for at least the first two Raimi films out there and no real time to be without Spider-Man and start to miss him, this movie made by necessity, along with its sequel trod on a lot of people's toes. There are folks out there who absolutely hate them, many of whom are people whose opinions we take very seriously.

We found good things and bad things. That's all we'll say now.

There are various plot elements of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 that we allude to and discuss so if you really don't want it spoiled you should see it first.

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Spider-Man 3

March 24, 2014

[SOM #84]

This one has been even more long-awaited than the first two Spider-Man reviews, because while it's fun to listen to great movies being praised and slightly less fun to hear about the flaws that either don't bother you or will now bother you every time you see the movie, everybody loves hearing a film that disappointed the entire planet getting torn to shreds.

As it turns out, this is less a torrent of anger and frustration as it is a clever disassembly of the ten plot lines that were mashed together into this bloated mess. What we found is that to get this to make sense and be a better, leaner, more focused film in the editing process you would actually have to remove some of the best elements. This was a melange of narrative contradictions that left many people stumped as the easy targets for what was wrong; too many villains, mistreatment of the Venom character and Peter being too emo all got blamed. In actuality it runs deeper. Find out where, why and how, right here. 

And be back next week as we start on the first of the immensely divisive new Amazing series, one of the hardest films we've ever had to review.

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Spider-Man 2

March 23, 2014

[SOM #83]

This is the second of our Spider-Man shows and since last week folks have been champing at the bit for more. We take that as a good sign, but again this even more beloved entry in the original trilogy still has issues that bother us. 

Some weak key casting, spurious character motivation and occasionally baffling leaps in logic are all elements that most people don't tend to notice in this one, principally because  it's almost certainly the best Spidey film on a technical scale. It delivers more emotion, more spectacle, more threat, more exhilaration, more depth and more fun even than its predecessor. Along with X2 it became the benchmark for the superhero sequel, expanding on the story rather than simply repeating the formula. 

Peter is genuinely troubled in this, to the point where his body and mind appear to rebel against him, forcing him to be Spider-Man NO MORE! Fortunately relateable antagonist Doc Oc is on the scene to peel the flesh from MJ's bones (Rated PG) and give Pete the motivation he needs to get back in the spandex for a phenomenal, breakneck (literally) train fight. 

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Spider-Man

March 22, 2014

[SOM #82]

For the first of our Spider-Man podcasts we travel back to 2002 and the film that not only started it all for the wall-crawler on the big screen, but arguably brought the superhero blockbuster to true legitimacy. 

Now this has long been considered a sacred cow, not quite as sacred as its sequel which you slight at your peril, but widely understood to be a superb superhero movie. Well here at Digital Drift we have a habit of holding the untouchable to higher account. We did it with Donner's Superman, Burton's Batman and very shortly we'll be doing it with Singer's X-Men. We've found while reviewing these that there is no perfect Spider-Man film yet, and just like Superman, maybe there never will be. What we can do, however is examine the flaws and celebrate the strengths of each of them (yes, even Spider-Man 3). 

Spidey is a hero defined by the events in his life and the enemies he faces. This is the one with the origin of Spider-Man... OK it's the one with the origin and the organic web-shooters. It's also the one with Green Goblin... OK it's the one with Norman Osborn... OK it's the one with Willem Dafoe as Norman Osborn in more than just a delusional cameo. See our problem? 

The real question is, in a post-Avengers world can a lone Marvel hero in his own little world offer us the same level of engaging, epic adventure? Spidey swings, J.J. shouts, Aunt May Worries, MJ pouts, Kroeger croons, MJ swoons, and all the while Tobey Maguire's pallid, expressionless cow's flank of a face occupies the screen. There's no doubt about it, we're gonna get emails.

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