Updated: 6 days ago
The Amazing Prologue
We here at Hidden Gems Literary Emporium have an interesting relationship with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, who may be quite successfully pushing the boundaries between print and film media. Our knowledge of comics might be limited, yet, as faithful and happy readers, we cannot help but become well acquainted with the source material when books or cartoons are adapted onto the silver screen. As storytellers and artists ourselves, we personally feel it is important for each and every one of us to respect the source material of a subject when creating something that is 'inspired' by someone else's hard work manifesting characters and worlds. Here's to you, Stan Lee and Jack (Kurtsburg) Kirby.
As noted above, this film in particular has many layers. Thus, we shall take a moment to prologue this review beginning with a deep dive into "The Spider-Verse''! Yes, even the prodigal Miles Morales receives a nod of acknowledgement during the lengthy run time of No Way Home, illustrating that the Marvel Cinematic Universe was busted wide open, in a good way. If you have taken a gander at the events of the Disney+ smash hit, Loki, you may have a greater over-standing of the events which transpire in No Way Home. Without spoiling the story we can simply say, things are going to get weird in Marvel's Cinematic Multiverse of Madness. Get ready to "Open your Eye!"
"What was in that Tea? AHH! blerboobaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!"
The Wonderful World of Bully MagRami
(If you would like to jump right into the movie review, please scroll down to the segment titled "Spider-Man, No Way Home Review")
It is 2002, Americans are seeking a hero in these trying times. The children are ready for something new, something ... amazing. Who shall be the hero responsible for bringing our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man onto the big screen? Evil Dead, Evil Dead 2, and Drag Me to Hell, Sam Rami, that's who, and if you don't like it, "Get off the set!" This Horror director simply tosses Spider-Man's lore into the trash and proceeds to imitate Stephen Spielberg's cinematic style with the empathy and heart of...a horror Director.
Dr. Ozborne, an ego driven, wealthy megalomaniac, with a knack for genetic manipulation, is reduced to a paranoid schizophrenic who has projected his subconscious desires into his collection of Afrikkaan tribal masks. Dr. Octavious, another brilliant scientist, is somehow confused with Dr. Curt Conners--the only Spider-Man villain whose story truly revolved around the whole, "Jekyll and Hyde" schtick.
Curt Conners: "Peter I found the answer to your troubles...wait ack, WRRRAWR!"
Sam Rami really, truly, absolutely. must film a "Jekyll and Hyde" horror story. For every single film of his trilogy hearkens to this theme so much so that it becomes comical...or... meme worthy...BULLY MAGUIRE.
Unfortunately, to the dismay of many readers, Hollywood directors have had a reputation of being a bit, dare we say, egotistical, for lack of a better word. Taking the reins with little regard for the fans of a vastly successful franchise and butchering the source material, while somehow attempting to make it better or more realistic. Some directors, such as Christopher Nolan, successfully blend the worlds of comics and reality. Others, well....
"Spider-Man is GOING to have organic webbing, because I refuse to waste the screen time expounding on the impoverished young man's genius."
"What's your motivation?....Uh, the tentacles hack your brain giving you multiple personalities...I know it's a "Jeckll and Hyde" schtick...I know I did it in the first film... Look, you can leave the stage and I'll put the tentacles on Willem Dafoe if you have a problem!"
"Two Seconds Later"
"Venom (2007) is going to be... ehh. Because I want to spend my entire special effects budget on SANDMAN! The most unimportant villain in Peter Parker's life! How? I'll make him important! He killed Uncle Ben, BOOM!"
Our faces, upon witnessing Venom in Spider-Man 3.....
Sam Rami is an excellent visionary director, yet, his attempts to reinvent the world of Peter Parker did not bode well with fans of the franchise. Directors at the time could get away with taking their own liberties with comic book franchises, but Spider-Man is one of the most successful comic and film brands in the US, and possibly, the world. Here lies the great question...What happens when a director butchers the source material, yet creates a widely (financially) successful film trilogy in the process? Do you build atop the convoluted mess of a foundation, or do you reboot? We know the answer. Enter, then... exit, The Amazing Spider-Man saga!
The Amazing Reboot
The Amazing Spider-Man received an "amazing" reception from both fans and critics. Andrew Garfield's performance, coupled with Marc Webb's directing, electrified millions, including ourselves. There was one unfortunate mishap... Many critics, including ourselves, felt a strange sensation, something akin to Neo witnessing a black cat crossing his path twice in the same scene. That odd feeling of deja vu. Were we watching Spider-Man 2 with a prettier Spider-Man and a glossy finish? Yes, but for good reason. The role assumed by Dr. Octavious in Spider Man 2, was actually a reprisal of Dr. Curtis Conner's actual canonical roles in both the comic books and the animated series. It could be argued that if the roles were switched and Conners were featured in Spider-Man 2, the movie would have had a profound impact on fans. Sam Rami could have had more liberties bringing his Horror film experience into the movie for a far more entertaining experience. Imagine the iconic operating table scene with a giant crocodile man! We have chills just writing it! The final act wrought another sense of deja vu. "Gas the city, find the cure, this movie just turned into Batman Begins."