Spider-Man (2002)

DVD Cover (Sony Home Entertainment Widescreen)
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Overall Rating 71%
Overall Rating
Ranked #101
...out of 13,981 movies
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Connections: Marvel: Spider-Man

When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family. --IMDb
Review by Chad
Added: June 28, 2004
Peter Parker is your average nerd in high school, until being bitten by a genetically-altered spider gives him various super-powers. Peter is now able to climb walls, throw around spiderwebs, and even has the patented "spidey-sense", which allows him to respond to dangers much quicker than the average joe. At first, Peter uses his new-found abilities for material gain; participating in a wrestling match against Bonesaw for a chance at three thousand dollars in order to buy a car and impress Mary Jane Watson, the girl he's had a crush on since he was six. However, the promoter of the match rips him off on the cash he's owed, and Peter gets back at him in quite the evil way. However, his revenge backfires on him, and at that point, Spider-Man vows to use his powers for good and to clean up New York. Meanwhile, behind the facade of the innocent-looking Oscorp laboratory, Norman Osbourne is working on a performance-enhancing chemical for the army. When he tests it out on himself, it transforms him into The Green Goblin, a super villain who intends to kill Spider-Man for his own reasons.

This was actually one of the better comic-to-movie adaptations that I've seen, thanks in large part to the director and his vision of the film. The storyline sticks quite close to the original comic, with only a few minor changes to bring it more up-to-date. Also, it didn't fall victim to the typical Hollywood summer blockbuster formula and rely solely on big-budget effects and action sequences. Sure, there's a good deal of that to be found here, but there's also a solid storyline to support it and to keep the movie flowing along nicely. I also thought it was a nice touch showing Peter getting used to having his powers, and not just going from average kid one day, to superhero the next. Most movies kind of speed that along and it comes off looking hokey, but it was handled appropriately here.

Tobey Maguire plays Spider-Man almost to perfection, coming off smoothly as the nerd with super-powers. The only thing missing from the character was the cheesy one-liners that he usually uses so much in the comics. I normally despise those from a movie, but they were a pretty big part of the comics, so I was expecting them going in. It's not really a huge problem with the movie; it doesn't ruin the whole viewing experience or anything like that, just a small gripe on my part. Kirsten Dunst is also nice in her role as Mary Jane Watson, and comes off as the typical snobby-girl-who-falls-for-the-nerd. The only person in the film that I really had a problem with was Willem Dafoe as Norman Osbourne / Green Goblin. In his scenes as Norman, he comes off fine, no problems there; but when he's in the Goblin role, he just comes off sounding hokey and fake. Maybe that was just me, but that's the way I saw it. Hell, even "Macho Man" Randy Savage had a feature role in making the movie so great, and really made the movie that much more enjoyable.

Overall, a worthy adaptation of the classic Spider-Man comics. If you enjoyed seeing him in print, you'd likely get some enjoyment out of seeing him on the big-screen. 9/10.
Big D #1: Big D - added 08/05/2004, 08:42 PM
It's a great movie. The comic book story, Spider-Man, has come to life...ON THE BIG SCREEN!!! The costumes looked decent, including Spider-Man's mask and the Green Goblin (that looked like a robot). Very good stuff.
Schillinger #2: Schillinger - added 08/22/2004, 05:54 AM
Overated, even though the actor that played Schillinger on Oz is in this (J.K. Simmons played J. Jonah Jameson here). With characters like the Green Goblin, there's always a way to screw up. You put him in the tights he originally wore and he looks like a fairy, you make a new costume and he looks like a homosexual robot. And come on, who the fuck still thinks that wrestling is 100% real?
. #3: . - added 09/13/2005, 09:13 PM
Huge disappointment.
Rik #4: Rik - added 09/22/2007, 02:36 AM
I like this movie. But I definitely oppose Tobey Maguire being Peter Parker. I don't think he can pull it off. Peter Parker is not THAT geeky.
Luminaire #5: Luminaire - added 11/22/2007, 05:28 PM
Magical movie, and many people can relate and wish they were Peter Parker because i sure wish i was. 10/10
Rest Easy Soul #6: Rest Easy Soul - added 01/24/2010, 08:15 PM
Easily the best and the first HUGE production movie I was excited about seeing. I had wanted since I was little to see Spidey on the big screen and how sweet it was. Great villain choice too.
John Hormel #7: John Hormel - added 08/24/2010, 10:07 AM
Essentially, a chance to see kirsten dunces nips on the big screen :)
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