Sunday, May 06, 2007
Verdict: I like it.
Halfway through, I almost thought I'd give the movie a thumbsdown, until the last section of the movie tied everything together nicely. I felt that everything was getting too dark and there were too many complex, parallel and confusing plots and characters, but the atmosphere changed towards the last 20% of the show, and the resolution at the end was pretty neat.
My conclusion is that the whole debacle started because Mary Jane didn't tell Peter that she had been fired from the musical. Well, OK, I'm not blaming either party. No wait, I'm blaming BOTH parties. MJ, for not telling, and Peter, for not asking. That made MJ feel rejected, misunderstood and unloved. It did not help that Peter was too engrossed in his superhero duties and thus seemed insensitive to MJ's desire for a listening ear and shoulder to cry on. And it also made Peter unable to understand why MJ was giving him the cold shoulder, despite his attempts to encourage her, which unfortunately were interpreted as condescending and egocentric, talking about HIM when it was supposed to be about HER. He thought he was helping her. She thought he was too self-absorbed. Oh boy, is this like real life or what?
Still, I don't understand why MJ didn't just shut Peter up and tell him that she had been fired, instead of walking off in a huff... and leaving a trail of misunderstanding which led to another mess of bad choices. And why didn't Peter just calm her down and give her a little extra attention instead of watching her walk off in a huff...?
Miscommunication, lack of communication, presumption, bitterness, pride. All these cause us much grief.
1. I like how the dark side of Peter Parker emerges in the movie. My negative assessment during the movie was premature. Yeah, now I can say that I like it, because he didn't stay that way forever. Duh, it's a movie, I should have realised earlier.
2. I like the message of forgiveness. Peter actually says, "I forgive you." He releases his bitterness and vengeance and thus paradoxically becomes free from its blood-thirsty and self-destructive grip. Those who fester vengeful thoughts kill themselves in the process.
3. I like the message of "You always have a choice." Truly, life is about choices. Now, haven't I heard that somewhere before...
4. I like Aunt May's premarital counselling wisdom. Aunt May has the best and wisest lines in the movie. Peter is so blessed to have an aunt like that.
5. Harry redeems himself at the end. That was the most touching moment of the movie, when with his dying breath he calls Peter his friend. The funeral scene was moving too... Peter staying behind, all alone by the grave, under the rain...
6. Spidey/Peter did not kill off Goblin/Harry at the beginning. It was a tough decision, as Harry wanted Peter dead, but Peter still had compassion for his friend. I face this moral tug-of-war when I'm stuck in KL traffic jams and keep getting cut off by queue jumpers. I might face this dilemma too at the next general election. Ack! :)
7. Some other things I can't remember now.
I Had Problems With:
1. I don't like the lack of info about the black symbiotic glob. For people like me who have not read Spiderman 101, I have no idea how or why it works.
2. Spidey shouldn't have kissed Gwen Stacy. Hello?!? You have a girlfriend, remember!?! D-u-h! A peck on the cheek may be OK, but not that upside down French kiss. Similarly, what was MJ thinking when she kissed Harry?!? Just friends? Hello?!? :P
3. I didn't like the dark side of Spiderman. But then I realised that we humans are not that far off either. The Bible says that all have sinned. So, in effect, we are all black as tar in our hearts. My aversion to the darkness is probably due to the fact that I detest that very darkness in myself which makes me do things I don't want to do but yet do, and which leaves bitter aftertastes after the saccharine sweetness has worn off. The things I despise in others are often the very things I despise in myself, but which I subconsciously deny or outrightly refuse to admit. Oh God, save me from self-righteousness and bitter-root judgment.
4. Peter reaches deep within himself to choose right over wrong, good over evil. That's a good idea to teach. But as we know, no human can save himself totally. See, Spidey got rid of the black suit, but created Venom in the process. No matter how good we are, we can never be good enough, and we can never overcome sin by our human efforts. We need a SuperSaviour.
5. Spidey smashes Eddie Brock's Nikon D200 into the wall. I feel for the camera. Ouch!
6. Spidey did CPR wrongly. He forgot to give 2 rescue breaths before starting the chest compressions. The cycle is 2 breaths and 30 compressions. Repeat 5 times. Stop, check for breath. No breath? Continue 5 cycles again. Repeat. Spidey stopped after only less than 10 compressions. You're supposed to do it until the ambulance arrives, or you yourself drop dead, or the person revives.
7. Some other things I can't remember now.
I have a few niggling questions and reservations. Perhaps due to my ignorance of the bigger Spidey picture. I have not read any of the Spidey comic books. My apologies.
1. What was that black amorphous symbiotic glob from outer space? Does it merely enhance a person's physical powers and thereafter hope to incite the person's inherent evil desires, or does it actually take over the person's mind, will and emotions? How does it do that?
2. Where does Spidey anchor his web line when swinging around among the building tops? I mean, he's already at the top and there's no other structure above him, so where does he shoot the line to? The sky?
3. Particle physics test facilities have incredibly lax security. Just a big hole in the ground. No wall around, no roof over. It looked more like a kitty litter than a top-notch US government research facility.
4. No matter where Spidey loses his mask -- and he seems to lose it or tear it in every fight -- he always shows up in the next scene with a mask in his hand. Does he carry a spare mask in his pocket?
5. Sandman could have easily killed Spidey by burying him under tons of sand, instead of trying to pound him to death with a sand fist. But no, that would be too easy.
6. Why didn't the butler tell Harry earlier?!?!! Oh, but that would spoil the effect.