Spider-Man is not one of my favorite comic book characters. I'm more of a Batman guy, but I have enjoyed the Spider-Man movies. I thought the second movie in the series was better than the first. So my expectation of this third installment was very high, even after hearing of the lousy reviews.
As I always start my reviews, here is the Netflix synopsis of Spider-Man 3:
After defeating eight-armed cyborg Doctor Octopus, Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire) faces off against a new crop of villains, including the shape-shifting Sandman (Thomas Haden Church), in the third adventure of the comic book series. While Spidey's superpowers are altered by an alien organism, his alter ego, Peter Parker, deals with nemesis Eddie Brock (Topher Grace) and gets caught up in a love triangle. Kirsten Dunst and James Franco co-star.
What I Liked
The actors and the characters they inhabit are likable. The special effects involving the Sandman were cool. Also the "Gwen Stacy rescue scene" was done with just the right amount of intensity. The last battle scene at some moments, but in the end left me unfulfilled.
What I Didn't Enjoy
But not all the special effects worked. The first battle slash chase scene looked particularly fake and uninspiring. Subsequent battles were too long and a bit repetitious.
The whiny nice Peter Parker started to get on my nerves. The angry Venom-infected Peter wasn't menacing to be, but over the top hilarious caricature. My guess - Toby Maguire can't pull off this duality bit convincingly. Also, the path the Harry Osborn character takes feels a bit forced.
The film also suffers from too many characters in a movie. Let's see, there's the old gang (Peter/Spidey, Mary Jane, Aunt May, etc.) and the new characters (Gwen Stacy, Ed Brock Jr., Venom, The Sandman, and a few others). To me this problem caused some of the old Batman franchise films to not reach their full potential.
This trilogy hasn't ended on a strong note. Spider-Man 3 is a watchable film. I just don't think I'll care to watch it again.
* 1/2 (out of 5)