But Spider-Man is not remotely politically conscious or anti-capitalist. In the film, he acts on the basis of a vengeance quest for the killer of his uncle; he reduces the complex social world to “good guys” and “bad guys”; and he believes that he does “80 percent” of the job of law enforcement, as he tauntingly tells a police officer who tries to arrest him.
Despite Spider-Man’s lack of conscious politics, the film does ascribe a label to him from the perspective of Captain Stacy—vigilante anarchism—though this is something the audience is never supposed to take seriously. Spider-Man is made out, through the pre-death words of Uncle Ben, to be acting out of “responsibility.” It is a socially muddy message.
Art does not need to contain consciously intended or socially acceptable messages, yet it can only be truthful if it corresponds to the actual nature of things and if it makes artistic discoveries with aesthetic intuition and feelings. The Amazing Spider-Man is entertaining, but in the end, it is a tired play on formulas in a repeating, endless circle.
The author also recommends:
Trying to have it both ways: Spiderman, directed by Sam Raimi[21 June 2002]
No, this won’t do at all[12 July 2004]
The dilemma of blockbuster filmmaking[4 June 2007]
Here's my problem with the new Spider-Man film, it's so visually blah. The look of the film is dead. Sam Raimi's version Haig doesn't seem to have cared for. That's fine. But I don't expect a great deal from these comic films. One thing I do expect is that they have a unique look. Tim Burton's two Batman films did, Joel Shumarcher's played with color but had no look. Sam Raimi is a visual genius and I loved the look and scope he brought to the previous Spider-Man movies. They were like "Love Finds Andy Hardy" and the other Mickey Rooney films in that they got worse and worse as the series went along -- plot wise. But they maintained their unique look.
Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"