Monday, January 11, 2010

Spider-Man 4 No More!

I was going to write about my thoughts on John Malkovich playing the part of The Vulture in the new Spider-Man film, but it turns out that's not going to happen. Instead, it looks like Raimi and Maguire are out for a fourth Spider-Man film, and instead the studio is going to reboot the franchise. I have mixed feelings about this.

During Movie-A-Day month, I wrote about Spider-Man 2 as one of my favorite movies. I think that the first one is pretty good as well, and the best I can say about the third is that it has some good ideas and some good moments scattered throughout a jumbled mess. Part of me was hoping that Sam Raimi and company would be able to vindicate themselves with a fourth picture. My optimism grew when I read that they were only going to do it if Raimi had more control over the picture - which is something that he didn't have with the third one, and I believe that's one of the main reasons why it went south. (It turns out that he wasn't even interested in using Venom - which was smart of him even though so many fans like that villain.) When I heard that Malkovich was supposedly playing The Vulture, my hopes went up. However, I found out about the whole thing going kaput as I sat down to write this entry.

At the end of my Spider-Man 2 review, I wrote that I had to make peace with the fact that even if they did make a good fourth movie, chances were bad that it would be as good as the second one. I suppose that I could have lived with that, but it would have been really awful if they made one that was as bad, if not worse, than the third one. I remember an online conversation where a friend and I were mocking Transformers and somebody countered that it couldn't be worse than making another Spider-Man film. It was annoying because I can certainly defend the first two, but it's hard to defend a franchise that ends on such a craptastic note. (Still, I'll say that Spidey 3 was better than Transformers - at least the action scenes were comprehensible.)

So, what do I think about doing a reboot? Maybe this is not such a bad idea. Still, I think that Hollywood is getting a little reboot-happy. I'm not opposed to the idea, but it seems like some time needs to pass first. Still, it seems like they're going to go with a teenage Peter Parker in the new series, which is fine as that's how the character started out, and that's what they've kept him as in the Ultimate Spider-Man comic series and the Sensational Spider-Man cartoon series. (Which is a pretty good show! I need to remember to set my DVR, as I think that it's almost up there with the old Batman Animated Series.)

I just hope that the first movie isn't an origin story, and I hope that they find a nice mix of villains that we've seen before along with some that we haven't. Personally, I'd rather see a high-budget TV series, as Spider-Man's adventures lend themselves more easily to serialized drama - which is exactly what a comic book is. Too bad nobody in Hollywood is listening to me though.


Nolan said...

I just don't know how you re-boot a franchise from 10 years ago without being repetitive. The fact that they're putting him back in high school makes me afraid that they're going after the Twilight demographic. Yikes.

Lance Christian Johnson said...

That is a possibility, but as I said, there is a history of the character being a high school student. That's what he was when the series began, so it's not like they're just pulling it out of nowhere.