Saturday, October 17, 2009

I knew it! Sam Raimi finally comes clean about "Spider-Man 3"

Somewhere deep in my mind I know that "Spider-Man 3" really wasn't the worst movie I've seen in the last 10 years or so. But it was just about the worst movie-going experience, which for me means pretty much the same thing.

Someone of my age should probably just give up on going to midnight movies altogether, but after the magic that was "Spider-Man 2" (still my favorite superhero flick), I was just thoroughly geeked up for the third chapter, as were the several hundred people who lined up outside our best local multiplex to watch it at the witching hour.

And, though I can't be sure, I'd have to imagine that most of those people were just as disappointed as I was as we made the drive home two-plus very long, boring hours later. It wasn't just that there were too many villians, the most-often heard complaint about "Spider-Man 3," though lack of focus was certainly a problem. Much more than that, it was really just a lack of spirit. Could the man who delivered the blissfully fun "Evil Dead" movies and the great baseball flick "For Love of the Game," among other movies, really spit out something so completely lifeless.

Well now, only about two years or so too late, it seems that even Sam Raimi himself is willing to admit just how bad "Spider-Man 3" was.

In the print edition of DVD & Blu-ray Review, he finally admitted what we all know: "I think having so many villains detracted from the experience. I would agree with the criticism."

More importantly, Raimi claims to have learned (or, I guess, re-learned) some lessons while making this year's best horror film and, next to Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds," the second-funnest movie I've seen all year, "Drag Me to Hell." Seriously, if you missed that one in theaters, it's out on DVD this week, and I can recommend it for anyone with a strong stomach who remembers the days when Raimi's movie used to be just wickedly funny. Here's what he said he learned from the experience:

"I think I've learned about the importance of getting to the point and the importance of having limitations, and I'm hoping to take that into a production where I'm actually allowed to explore with more of the tools to pull it off with a little more splendour. I hope I don't lose that edge that I've just found. That would be my approach to Spider-Man 4: to get back to the basics."

Call it "edge," "back to basics" or whatever you want to, but here's hoping he can hold on to it. A look at his IMDB slate shows that, along with just a ton of producing gigs "in development," he's still listed as directing three flicks, "Warcraft," "Spider-Man 4" and - scheduled to somehow come out before either of those - another "Evil Dead" movie for next year, penned by Mr. Raimi himself. If that actually happens (and this is the first I've heard about it), it would be the real test of whether or not the old Sam Raimi is back to stay.

Except for that and before I finally set off to see "Where the Wild Things Are," all I have is the trailer for "Serious Moonlight." It looks like nothing I would ever want to see, but since it was written by the late Adrienne Shelly (actress and writer of "Waitress," among other flicks), directed by veryfunnylady Cheryl Hines at at least co-stars Kristen Bell, maybe I'll give it a chance when it comes out Dec. 4. Anyways, have a great weekend, and if you've seen "Where the Wild Things Are," please feel free to share your thoughts about it, as I hopefully will tomorrow. Peace out.


Mercurie said...

I have to admit I was very disappointed by Spider-Man 3. I loved the first two movies, which number among the greatest superhero flicks of all time. The third was a major disappointment. For me it wasn't just too many villains, it was that Mary Jane was acting like a spoiled brat and Venom has to be one of the worst villains ever created, either in comic books or movies.

Reel Fanatic said...

You couldn't be more right about Venom, Mr. Mercurie, especially the way he was drawn in "Spider-Man 3" .. I still can't believe they're developing a "Venom" movie, and I certainly won't go see it unless the word of mouth is just way beyond tremendous