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So the summer season kicks off in style with the third in the Spider-man franchise, flying onto our screens. Sam Raimi returns to the directors chair again along with the rest of cast from the first two films.  Since his run in with Doc Oc, Peter Parker has come to love his life as Spider-man as have New York, but it has put pressure on his burgeoning relationship with Mary Jane who feels threatened by the arrival of Gwen Stacy (Bryce Dallas Howard) To make matters worse his old friend Harry Osbourne is out for revenge for the death of his father, and thats not all. If a mad goblin junior wasn’t enough, Spidey now has the Sandman and Venom to contend with as well as his own dark side. When an alien simbiote decides to make Peter it’s new home it results in a new black suit that provides him with new stronger abilities, but changes him more than he realises.

   They say two’s company and three’s a crowd, well this film shows that to be true. In the first two films all Spidey had to deal with was one villian, Goblin and Dr Octopus, and this left plenty of time for all the characters to be developed making two of the best comic book films. With the three villains this time, everything seems crowbarred in, there isn’t enough time for the story to fan out and give us all the insites we want about the characters. Despite this there is a hell of a lot to enjoy about this movie. As we saw in the previous films Sam Raimi has a deft touch when it comes to humour and in this third episode there are a lot of laughs to be had, most coming from the brilliant J.K.Simmons as J Jonah Jameson, who has almost stolen all three films. As with all Raimi films, his old buddy Bruce Campbell pops up again, this time as a French Waiter, trying to help Peter with the biggest night of his life. Strangely when Peter joins the darker side, we get some funny scenes as he gets slightly cockier, including a great Saturday Night Fever tribute.  Obviously this isn’t a comedy, but a summer blockbuster and it lives up to the brand. This film features some amazing action sequences, though sometimes they are so fast and frenetic that you find it hard to follow. 

  So what of the villians, well first up we have Harry’s new Goblin, which was hinted at the end of part two. Now the secrets out, he is all out to destroy Peter and with his new glider attacks him in a pretty brutal fight. Obviously comic fans won’t be happy with the new suit and glider but looks pretty good. The next villian we are introduced to is The Sandman played by Thomas Haden Church, who we discover was the actual murderer of Uncle Ben, which gives Spidey a feeling for revenge. Like a lot of the film, Sandman feels a bit short changed, he tends to pop up here and there for the odd action sequence and then disappears for long stretches. The CG on him though is pretty impressive especially in his giant form. So to the villian a lot of fanboys and film goers have been looking forward to, Venom. After Peter realises what the suit is doing to his personality he rips it off, where it latches onto his rival Eddie Brock (Topher Grace) producing the simbiote Venom. Those feverent fanboys could be a bit disappointed with the black monster, as he isn’t the huge hulking beast of the comics, but is a pretty scary creature all the same, showing itself to be Spideys biggest threat so far. Like Sandman it just feels a bit tacked on, the relationship between Peter and Eddie and then Spidey and Venom has enough story and potential to make a film all of it’s own, rather than the last 40 mins of this one. 

   From all this you would think that I didn’t enjoy the film, but I really liked it, okay it’s not as good as the first two films, but it’s still a new Spider-Man film and thast what matters. Even thoug it clocks in at a long 2 hours 20 minutes, it doesn’t feel that long as there is so much going on, but my feeling is that there are too many villians, i think we could have a film of Spidey vs. Sandman and then a film of Spidey vs. Venom. Maybe because this is maybe his last Spider-man film, Sam Raimi wanted to get as much in as possible, who knows though I wouldn’t be surprised if there was some studio pressure. There are a few cheesy lines throughout, but it doesn’t ruin the relationships between the characters, and I would like to see a few more of these films, hopefully with all returning. If you enjoyed the first two films you will enjoy this one, if you are a fanboy beware you maybe disappointed, but just hold you scepticism and enjoy the ride. Rating 7/10

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