There’s no real point in complaining about people trolling every single post/review/article I put up that even alludes to the movie that happens to be THE big entertainment news story of the moment (seriously, people; I am “obsessed” with “The Amazing Spider-Man” in the same way that The Weather Channel was “obsessed” with Hurricane Katrina – it’s kind of the only thing going on at the moment, especially since there’s been no “tsunami” out of SDCC yet) since this is my job… but at this point I’ve had enough. Especially since The Internet ran out of new conspiracy-theories and sinister-motivations to ascribe to my not liking a movie as much as you did within the first few hours.
So I’m just gonna take one more pass through the most common bullet-points on this nonsense and then that’s it from me until something newsworthy (re: sequel, casting/re-casting, who’s-replacing-Mark-Webb, etc) happens…
1. If there’s one thing that I just cannot stand about internet movie discussion it’s that people seem incapable of grasping that not everything can be expressed as a hard-equation. Opinion and criticism aren’t 1 + 1 = 2 constants. To wit: It is not “hypocrisy” or a “double-standard” to like “X-Men: First Class” but dislike some other reboot, because reboot doesn’t ALWAYS equal “bad.” BAD equals bad. See also: Elements that work perfectly well in one movie CAN sometimes be a mistake in another movie – which is why there is no point in excavating old reviews of this or that critic to “a-ha!” them about saying ______ was fun in THIS movie when they’d said the same ______ was bad in a previous one.
2. No, I didn’t mark the movie “down” because of the business stuff behind the reboot decision. I made note of it because, from my perspective, said decisions/processes were very plausible explanations for many of the bigger problems with the film. Remember a few years back when there was a huge writer’s strike and you had all these blockbusters coming out with under-cooked scripts as a result? Same basic thing.
3. I “get” that there’s a younger generation of movie-people for whom Sam Raimi has only ever been “the guy who made “Spider-Man” and also some horror movies before that;” (which is tragic, btw) so I “get” that that’s where some of the split on these two series is coming from – at the time, Raimi’s “Spider-Man” was the biggest thing that had ever happened to film geekdom: Hiring a guy who was perennially on the “movie nerd wish-list” for every genre property but would NEVER actually land one was a neutron-bomb for us; which is pretty-much why people might as well be speaking Klingon when they tell me the original films were “bad” because of the slapstick, the crazy-zooms, the “campy-evil” Goblin, the retro-horror tone-shifts, various cameos by actors and cars, Maguire playing (personality-wise) a straight-up lift of 60s Peter Parker… I mean, that’s the stuff we showed up hoping for at the time! And before anyone asks, yes, if Mark Webb HAD a singular/auteurist style of his own (he doesn’t appear to, which is not necessarily a negative) I’d have liked to see him bring it.
4. Believe it or not, I choose the stuff I review mainly based on whatever is most relevant/newsworthy at the time; and form my opinions based on… well, my opinions; as opposed to carrying out some kind of grand, five-steps-ahead supervillain conspiracy to affect production decisions and manipulate the results of theoretical future movies. To be more specific; no, I am not under the illusions of carrying out a Machiavellian plot to “make” this movie fail so Spider-Man can possibly turn up in “Avengers 3” ten years from now.
5. I have no opinion about the Fantastic Four reboot right now because all anyone knows is that the director of “Chronicle” is doing it, which is a good start. Unlike Spider-Man, this reboot makes a certain amount of sense (first two movies were terrible and the second one was a huge flop) apart from the rights-issues stuff, and it doesn’t involve an irritating web of studio manhandling and backstabbing; so right now it’s kind of a neutral prospect as far as I’m concerned.