New York City’s favorite Spider-Man is hitting the big screen again, and this time, the movie’s doing things right.
In May, 2002, Sam Raimi’s version of Spider-Man struck the box office with Colombia Pictures, earning $821.71 million world-wide, and to this day is the 26th highest-grossing film in the history of filmography. The major success of Spider-Man lead to two sequals, Spider-Man 2 and Spider-Man 3. Raimi’s version plays out the life of a high school senior by the name of Peter Parker. Shy, socially awkward, but unusually intelligent for his age, Parker lives with his guardians, Uncle Ben and Aunt May. His parents are rarely mentioned. A red-headed beauty named Mary Jane lives next door, housed with a mildly abusive, drunk father, and just happens to be Parker’s none-too-secretive crush he can’t have, because like every good looking girl cliche must fill, she’s dating a popular, rude, good looking athlete from school.
And of course, you gotta have the rich and influencial-but-jealously-prone best friend, Harry Osborn, son of Dr. Norman Osborn, who’s always loved Parker more then his own book-stupid but athlete-smart heir. Dr. Osborn works as president of a manufacturing company that has been fighting to earn a contract to place weapons in the hands of the U.S. Army. On a field trip, between Harry goating Peter to make a move on M.J. and a science professor attempting to teach high schoolers about a handful of rare radio-active spiders, M.J. eerily declares one has gone missing, which the scientist dismisses. Taking pictures for his school, Parker attempts to snag a close-up of M.J. when the missing radio-active arachnid slides down onto his hand, biting him visciously before crawling off into the crowd. In a laboratory that’s full of the most rare and poisonous critters on the planet, Parker keenly decides to keep the attack to himself.
Blacking out in his bedroom, he wakes in the morning only to discover his sight has become perfect, he’s gained a substantial amount of tone and muscle, senses have been heightened, and oddest of all, his wrists shoot spider-web strings. Honing these new-found abilities in secret, he gains confidence. After M.J.’s boyfriend shows off a flashy new ride, Parker decides it’s time to win the girl of his dreams, competing in a wrestling competition for money. When he wins and is ripped off, a robber steals from the wrestling adviser. As payback Parker lets the man go, only to discover the man fataly wounds Uncle Ben. Full of regret and strife, Parker devotes himself to justice and battling the criminals swamping New York, and gets his revenge when he terrifies his father’s murderer into falling out of a three story window.
Although this story was exciting and enchanting CGI-wise, it really tweaked with the real version of how Peter Parker came to be the heroic figure he is. The reboot of Spider-Man, premiering on July 3, 2012, and starring up-and-coming actor Andrew Garfield (from The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus and The Social Network) as Peter Parker, takes Spidey back to high school as a younger figure, and bringing in Gwen Stacy (portrayed as a blond Emma Stone), Parker’s first love interest in the comic book. And the girl he couldn’t save, when nemesis Green Goblin held her over one side of a bridge, and a cart full of children over the other, telling Spider-Man to choose who he was. Hero, or selfish. Parker’s loss of Stacy is a major component in what helps mold his determination to save and preserve life, and what truly makes him a hero to remember.
To be directed by Marc Webb, the reboot will consist of almost an entirely different cast then Raimi’s. Parker’s guardians Uncle Ben and Aunt May (Played by Martin Sheen and Sally Field) are still on-screen, but with the addition of Gwen Stacy and her dad, Captain George Stacy (Denis Leary), the nemesis chosen for Spider-Man for Webb’s movie is The Lizard, a mad scientist that tested lizard serums on himself, and earning the powers of regeneration, but ultimately cursing himself with a reptillion, humanoid disfiguration. With a plot-line so loyal and characters straight from the comic book, I don’t see how this film can go wrong.