Thursday, May 3

Spider-Man 3

The greatest battle is within..the story.

I decided to spend Labor Day watching Spider-Man 3. Really, it took me the entire day and well into the next one. Months before the opening, all the posters were accompanied by notes saying that you can reserve seats for the opening day. Why would I do that? Especially if the schedule online says that 4 of 5 theaters were showing the same movie.

I got to the mall at 2pm. There were kids everywhere. Lots of little boys wearing Spidey costumes and shirts. Had lunch, then checked the ticket counter. "All screenings are sold out," the ticket girl said. Finally, after much haggling, we got a really late screening at 10pm. That means we had 8 hours to (a) go home, sleep, do whatever; or (b) stay in the mall, loiter, do whatever. We chose (b), except that the "do whatever" part meant I had to be physically chained to a corner table and write down my grad class requirement.

When the waiting finally ended, I couldn't wait to get to our seats, which were on the very last row, almost near the projector. You could see everyone. There weren't too many kids by then.

Here's what I think of the movie I waited 8 hours for:

1. There's hair-raising dialogue like, "I'm not a bad person, just someone with lots of bad luck"? It doesn't help that he turned to petty crime because his daughter was sick. Hello, Robin Padilla/Bong Revilla/Lito Lapid/Roi Vinzons, isdatchoo?

2. MJ gets hostaged again. They must have ran out of plot points or maybe it's in Kirsten Dunst's contract.

3. You know there's something wrong if you start fidgeting a quarter through the movie. It's 2.5 hours long, I waited 8 hours for it. I should reconsider going to movies on the opening day.

4. After a very spectacular chase through New York's really damn tight alleys, Harry Osborn knocks his head against the wall. Guess what happens when he wakes up?

5. Which leads me to swear that screen credits aside, considering all the plot points, character motivation and dialogue, this must have been written by Filipinos.

The Spider-Man movies used such familiar storylines: boy meets girl, boy meets spider and is turned into superhero, boy loses girl because he opts to be hero first, boy chooses not to be a hero anymore, boy finds foe in his boy best friend because his friend's dad liked him better.

I realize that they have to tie up a lot of loose ends in this third movie, and you still get a lot of familiar plots here: the small time crook who feels he's been handed a lot more crap by the universe, the love triangle, the revenge angle, career jealousies between couples, etc.

It's a dangerously thin line between tragedy and travesty, but somehow the two previous movies were able to toe the line and come up with a believable hero. When Peter Parker started sashaying to Fever, they lost me. "Are we still watching Spider-Man and not Firehouse Dog?" Now there are talks of a fourth installment, but that doesn't excite me anymore.

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