Spider-Man 3 (2007)



Critic Consensus: Though there are more characters and plotlines, and the action sequences still dazzle, Spider-Man 3 nonetheless isn't quite as refined as the first two.

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Your friendly neighborhood web-slinger is back, only this time his sunny outlook has become partially overcast in the third chapter of director Sam Raimi's Spider-Man saga. Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, and James Franco return to reprise their roles from the previous two installments, with Thomas Haden Church, Topher Grace, and Bryce Dallas Howard making their first appearances in the series as Flint Marko (aka Sandman), Eddie Brock (aka Venom), and Gwen Stacy, respectively. Peter Parker (Maguire) has finally leaned to walk the middle ground between being the superhero that his city needs and the man that Mary Jane (Dunst) loves. All is well in New York City until one night, as Peter and M.J. sit gazing at the stars, a falling comet streams across the sky and crashes into the ground close by. But this isn't any ordinary shooting star, and upon impact the mysterious space rock is split open to reveal a shape-shifting symbiote with the power to overtake anything that it comes into contact with. Later, as Harry Osborn (James Franco) acquires his late father's flying board, engineers a powerful new Goblin outfit, and takes to the sky to avenge dad's death, the mysterious space sludge infects both Peter's Spider-Man suit and ambitious street photographer Eddie Brock (Grace). Peter's strange new suit gives him a newfound sense of power as it gradually overpowers his personality, and he discovers that escaped convict Flint Marko was in fact the man responsible for the death of Uncle Ben (Cliff Robertson). Unfortunately for Peter, Marko has recently acquired the power to morph at will and quickly completes his transformation into the dreaded Sandman. As the Sandman gives in to his darkest criminal instincts and the slithering space symbiote transforms Eddie Brock into the nightmarish fanged villain known as Venom, the citizens of New York City must once again call on Spider-Man to fend off destructive forces that are far too powerful for the likes of mortal man. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi
PG-13 (for sequences of intense action violence)
Action & Adventure , Mystery & Suspense , Science Fiction & Fantasy
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Tobey Maguire
as Peter Parker/Spider-Man
Kirsten Dunst
as Mary Jane Watson
James Franco
as Harry Osborn/New Goblin
Thomas Haden Church
as Flint Marko/Sandman
Topher Grace
as Eddie Brock/Venom
Bryce Dallas Howard
as Gwen Stacy
Rosemary Harris
as Aunt May Parker
J.K. Simmons
as J. Jonah Jameson
James Cromwell
as Captain Stacy
Theresa Russell
as Emma Marko
Dylan Baker
as Dr. Curt Connors
Elizabeth Banks
as Betty Brant
Bruce Campbell
as Maitre d'
Emma Raimi
as Girl With Camera
Lorne Raimi
as Boy at the Final Battle No. 1
Henry Raimi
as Boy at the Final Battle No. 2
Willem Dafoe
as Norman Osborne/Green Goblin
Samantha Ressler
as Girl At The Final Battle
Alan Cohn
as Jazz Club Musician
Dan Callahan
as Jazz Club Musician
Carol Chaikin
as Jazz Club Musician
Dan Cummings
as Jazz Club Musician
Vance Hammond
as Jazz Club Musician
Bill Nunn
as Joseph `Robbie' Robertson
Marc Vann
as Play Producer
Joe Bays
as Jazz Club Manager
Gregg L. Daniel
as Precinct Detective
Timothy Patrick Quill
as Crane Operator
Bill E. Rogers
as New Jersey State Policeman No. 1
Mike Alexander
as New Jersey State Policeman No. 2
Sonya Maddox
as ICU Nurse
Rogelio T. Ramos
as Emergency Room Doctor
Andre B. Blake
as Crane Disaster Radio Policeman
Derrick Thomas
as Cop At Crane Disaster
Jessi Collins
as Mary Jane's Replacement
Menachem Mendel
as Kid In Times Square
as Kid In Times Square
Michael McLaughlin
as Boy at Key to the City Ceremony
Anne Gartland
as Councilwoman
Keith Woulard
as Policeman at Sand Truck No. 2
Reynaldo Gellegos
as Armored Car Driver
Jim Coope
as Newsstand Patron No. 1
Dean Edwards
as Newsstand Patron No. 2
Margaret Laney
as Newsstand Patron No. 3
Toni Wynne
as Congratulatory Woman At Daily Bugle
April D. Parker
as Test Site Technician
Aimee Miles
as Coffee Shop Waitress
Tanya Sinovec
as Jazz Club Waitress
Ted Raimi
as Hoffman
Christina Cindrich
as Test Site Technician No. 5
Emilio Rivera
as Policeman at Sand Truck No. 1
Ron King
as Jazz Club Musician
Perla Haney-Jardine
as Penny Marko
Stan Lee
as Man In Times Square
Andre Blake
as Crane Disaster Radio Policeman
Michael Papajohn
as Dennis Carradine/Carjacker
Joe Manganiello
as Flash Thompson
Menachem Mendel Boymelgreen
as Kid in Times Square
Anne Gartian
as Councilwoman
Nasir Stewart
as Kid In Times Square
Austin Hendrickson
as Kid In Times Square
Taylor Hemhauser
as Kid In Times Square
Rey Gallegos
as Armoured Car Driver
Kathryn Bryding
as Woman Outside Theater
Joe Virzi
as Police Detective
Tim De Zarn
as Philip Watson
Edward Padilla
as Test Site Technician No. 2
Robert Curtis Brown
as Test Site Technician No. 3
Paul Terrell Clayton
as Test Site Technician No. 4
Carolyn Neff
as Test Site Technician No. 5
Cliff Robertson
as Uncle Ben Parker
Elya Baskin
as Mr. Ditkovitch
Mageina Tovah
as Ursual
John Paxton
as Houseman
Becky Ann Baker
as Mrs. Stacy
Steve Valentine
as Photographer
Mark Kubr
as Jazz Club Bouncer
Ronald King
as Jazz Club Musician
Tim Maculan
as Play Director
Hal Fishman
as Anchorman
Lucy Gordon
as Jennifer Dugan
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Critic Reviews for Spider-Man 3

All Critics (249) | Top Critics (52)

At 141 minutes, this supe-opera is seriously overextended, with four distinct subplots and way too much hand-wringing over things like the heroine's singing career.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Top Critic

Too many villains, too many pale plot strands, too many romantic misunderstandings, too many conversations, too many street crowds looking high into the air and shouting "oooh!" this way, then swiveling and shouting "aaah!" that way.

Full Review… | November 16, 2007
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Notwithstanding a cute scene in which Peter enlists suave maitre d' Bruce Campbell to help him propose to Mary Jane, director Sam Raimi's juggling of the comedy and the action is unusually flat-footed.

May 4, 2007
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

Raimi at least manages to make it both huge and human.

Full Review… | May 4, 2007
Top Critic

After two epic successes that deserved their success, the latest installment swings between intense action sequences and unaccountably flat dramatic interludes.

Full Review… | May 4, 2007
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

One has to consider that the film's problems -- and they are numerous -- may be the product of the franchise's runaway popularity.

Full Review… | May 4, 2007
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Spider-Man 3


So I think the main number one big ginormous flaw in this movie is the fact they use too many villains and plots, I'm sure we can all agree on this. Way back in 1992 a certain young Mr Tim Burton had free reign to create the sequel for his smash hit 'Batman'. In doing so he stuck in two main villains alongside his own creation...The Penguin, Catwoman and Max Shreck. This seemed to start a massive trend that has continued to this day! Following on from this initial idea many or most superhero flicks seem to have at least two villains as standard, sometimes more! and this is where this film implodes. First villain is Venom, now this alien creature crashes to Earth in or on meteorite out of nowhere and that's it, we get nothing more on it at all. No idea where its come from, how, why, what its intentions are, why its doing what its doing etc...its just there and you gotta accept it. Whether or not the comics give us this information I don't know (although I'm sure they do), but here in this film its a solid mystery for anyone who isn't a comic fanboy, myself included. So back story and the way this character is played out in the film is new to me, I have no idea if its correct alongside the source material, all I know is how this thing looks and it did seem well created to me. The CGI was decent and seemed to capture Venom's appearance well although why it would alter Spider-Man's spider logo seems daft, it infects his outfit and body, why would it alter the logo? Second villain was the Sandman who I know was bumped up from a minor comic position to a major role revolving around Parker's uncle. Now again whether or not this was the right way to go if you're a fanboy I don't know, as for the rest of us I felt the story arc did work pretty well and developed the Sandman into something other than just a common baddie. This character now had a good solid family arc combined with an emotional connection to Parker which did feel a little forced admittedly, like a clear after thought, but it managed to hold together. I also liked the visual design for this guy, he had a distinctly old fashioned feel about him, like a criminal from the 40's. The characters musical theme really pushed that vibe if you ask me, a very Bogart-esque tune. I liked his outfit too, again it had a very old fashioned look about it, like something Gene Kelly would wear. The final villain squeezed into the film was Harry Osborn as the next Green Goblin, following on from his fathers work. Now I had no problem with this character being here because he's been here since the beginning and it felt right that this story arc should happen. Unfortunately along with the other two villains it all felt so convoluted and tight for space that the poor old Goblin was reduced to sporadic appearances. Well they all were really, Venom especially so, that thing vanished for half the flick. The Goblin gets conveniently injured right at the start, after a horrendously bad CGI battle in the sky with Spidey, and we don't see him again for ages. Its the same spiel as before with this character, just replace Dafoe with Franco, same action sequences, new outfit that's all (looks worse too). So in that sense it seemed weak but you knew he had to be there, if anything they should of dropped Venom as that really seemed crowbarred in, jostling for any kind of screen time. The other problem I had with this film other than the multitude of villains was the relationship between Parker and Mary Jane. Oh my balls this got annoying, first they're together, then they're not, then they get back together again, then Mary Jane sluts around with Osborn, then Parker again, plus you've got Gwen Stacy in there too...holy ribbons of snot!! I got so fed up of seeing Parker and Mary Jane fighting whining and crying Jesus. Plus the fact Mary Jane gets fired from her stage show after one performance seemed a bit ridiculous and is obviously done to crank up the annoying emotional relationship issues. Then you've got all that crap where Parker goes to the dark side due to the Venom alien. Parker as a dark character apparently translates to a lame looking emo hairstyle, a bit of goth eye shadow and then acting like 'The Mask' in a nightclub, what an embarrassing mess that was! I must admit to being disappointed with the effects this time also, is it me or do the effects actually get worse after the first film? Seeing Spidey swinging from rooftop to rooftop is still sweet, Venom was cool and the Sandman had some great effects in places but the action sequences became very hard to follow with fast moving terrible looking CGI. As I already said the initial fight between Osborn and Spidey was awful looking, but the big finale was just a shambles of shoddy CGI and greenscreen, a lot of it looked very obvious to me. Also not so sure why or how the Sandman is able to grow to such massive proportions or fly, how does sand enable that?? and he kinda looked like a big lump of poo. I honestly think this is the most over stuffed flick I've seen for some time (or ever), it really is so overloaded and overly long. Stands to reason this effects the film negatively which is a shame seeing as this franchise hasn't been too bad. The best bit in this film for me was probably the amusing cameo from Bruce Campbell (again!) doing his best snappy snooty French maitre d'. Seems incredible to say that I know but it was a fun little scene, everything else was a mess frankly...apart from the odd visual moment. There are huge periods where characters disappear from the film entirely so other sub plots can continue (Sandman and Venom), Osborn and Parker end up fighting over Mary Jane instead of Osborn's dead father, Osborn's butler is a horrible Alfred rip off, the guy acting in the role is dreadful plus he only now in this film tells Harry about how his father was really killed!! And lastly even though the Sandman's story arc worked OK and has a good heart it did feel like they were trying to rewrite the original film. So definitely ambitious and not a total complete disaster but clearly one bad guy would have worked out better, we now all know Venom was only stuck in there to maximise the audience due to the characters popularity. I understand that but really they should have known better...well I say that but this is Hollywood,

Phil Hubbs
Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer


Harry loses his memory after attacking Peter and their friendship is seemingly restored leaving him free to hunt down the man truly responsible for Uncle Ben's death. However things are complicated by his transformation into The Sandman and the appearance of an alien creature that enhances Peter's negative emotions. There's actually a pretty decent sequel hidden inside the bloated, episodic mess that is Spider-man 3. Sam Raimi's presence at the helm is marred by his inability to resist the keys to the SFX toy shop but the cast are still likable, the comic relief (and JK Simmons in particular) is still funny and there's plenty of pacey action to maintain the attention. The big problem is with the script which relies far too much on contrivance and totally implausible coincidence. The most frustrating thing is that it could so easily have been corrected by the complete removal of the utterly ham-fisted and largely irrelevant Venom sub-plot. All the weakest elements of the film are tied up in it from Topher Grace's terrible performance, to the impossible to believe coincidences, to the frankly embarrassing jazz dancing emo Parker sequence. It's a shame because this wrecks the second half of the film and just detracts from some pretty decent character moments from Peter, Harry and even The Sandman himself. Yet another abject lesson that in film making, more often can mean less.

xGary Xx
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer


"Spider-Man 3," i'm not going to lie, has tons of plot holes; However, I find this film extremely entertaining! Ever since I first laid eyes on this film in theatres I was hooked on all the cheesy CGI that they chose to throw in. I could watch this film over and over again, laughing at the random cast choices and acting, but my belief still stands that if it is excluded from the first two films, then it would be a great film! Without it's corniness and it's unbearably cheesy scenes of CGI, it is comparable to the first film. It strays away from the comic books, which we all know that Raimi has already done since the beginning, but this time he went a little overboard when thinking about plot lines. He places far too many and much too many villains. Overall, I must say that it is the most entertaining film of the trilogy, to just kick back and watch some action, but without the heart of the first two, it unravels. "Spider-Man 3" works very hard to hold it's audience, and it does succeed, but only to fans of the first two. It will not gain any new fans. This film could have the title of "awesome," but there is too much wrong with it. "Spider-Man 3," despite what the critics have to say, it a very fun ride!

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

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