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Spider-Man: Homecoming: A Review


Okay, first things first. I’m going to be blunt about this. 1) It’s not 1964 anymore. That should be obvious, considering that I wasn’t born yet in that year and I’m well into my forties now. 2) Peter Parker and his Aunt May live in an apartment in Queens in New York City. Why am I pointing these two very basic things out? Well, unfortunately it’s because I’m imagining some objections to the nature of the new Spider-Man reboot from people who want its supporting characters to adhere firmly to those presented in the comic book stories of the sixties through the nineties. Look, I get it. I grew up in the eighties firmly entrenched in that well-established classic Spider-Man world. If you read my ranking of the first five Spider-Man movies, you’ll know that Sam Raimi’s films were my favorites there in part due to their stylistic and character similarities with those books I read as a teenager. But if you’re going to present a teenaged webhead set in the current day, some changes are just going to have to be made. Are we on the same page with this? Great. Let’s talk about the new movie then.

It is in part due to these changes that this new Spider-Man film is easily one of the best we’ve seen yet. If you are hoping for no spoilers at all in a review I would recommend that you stop reading here and go ahead and see the movie. It has my unreserved recommendation even if it’s not absolutely perfect. If you’re okay with some very mild spoilers, then read on!
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Worst to First: Ranking the Spider-Man Movies


We’re looking forward to tonight’s release of the new Spider-Man movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming with another of our “Worst to First” articles. I’m not sure I’ll offer too many surprises on the top end here, but there might be a little bit of suspense in the lower half. Since most of us will not have seen the new film, we’ll only be ranking the existing five for the time being. If you have seen the newest solo Spider-Man flick already, feel free to share your non-spoiler thoughts here in the comments section.
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Franchise Killers: The Amazing Spider-Man 2


It may seem counter-intuitive to discuss the death of the Spider-Man franchise pending the release of a new movie starring the comic book hero.  These days, studios are unable or unwilling to let their movie franchises die.  It doesn’t matter how well or how poorly Spider-Man: Homecoming performs this weekend, Sony cannot afford to stop making movies about Marvel’s famous wall-crawling, web-spinner.  But just three short years ago, the studio released a Spider-Man movie that was received so poorly that the studio put the brakes on all future Spider-Man-related projects and turned to a competitor for assistance.

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Sam Raimi: Along Came A Spidey


Hard to believe but fifteen years ago there was no such thing as a Spider-man movie.  Now here we are and Spidey is on his second reboot.  When the original Spider-man movie debuted in 2002, super hero movies were still relatively uncommon and director Sam Raimi was known primarily as the director of cult horror movies.  Prior to the movie’s release, Raimi talked to Movieline about how he got the job, what controversial contributions James Cameron made to the movie and how the chemistry between Tobey Maguire and Kristen Dunst may have spilled over into real life.

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Why’d it bomb? The Amazing Spider Man 2 (2014)


Last summer, Spider-Man made his debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (or MCU for short). This summer, the web-slinger will be headlining his own movie. But before his “homecoming”, Spidey was the star of two of Sony’s franchises. First, Sam Raimi a trilogy starring Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst. Then Marc Webb rebooted the series in 2012 with Andrew Garfield taking over the mantle. In both cases, the franchise’s started off well but then, through executive meddling, things didn’t go so well.

Then came The Amazing Spider Man 2, which had the lowest grossing domestic gross of any Spider Man film, grossing $202 million domestically. That being said, it was technically a hit at the box office, making $709 million worldwide. However, while that wasn’t much different from the first movie’s worldwide gross of $757 million, Sony was expecting the movie to make more money and, when it didn’t, they ended up firing Garfield (though the fact that he had a falling out with the head of Sony didn’t help matters either), they cancelled their plans for an Amazing Spider-Man franchise, and decided to reboot the whole thing all over again. But why wasn’t it the huge hit Sony was hoping for? Let’s find out!

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Tobey Maguire Gallery

10 Things I Loved about Universal Orlando’s Theme Parks


universal-studios-florida-3

My family and I recently spent a few days in Orlando at Universal’s theme park and entertainment complex, and there is plenty to like when a large company puts so much effort into drawing big crowds in with lively, exciting, and immersive attractions and environments. There are some obvious examples that people who have only thought about visiting Universal are probably already aware of. First and Foremost, there’s the twin Harry Potter lands. Also, there’s the expanded Simpsons area of the original Universal park. With a truly impressive group of properties like Shrek, Despicable Me, Jurassic Park, Transformers, Men in Black, and their legendary set of classic monsters to choose from, Universal has created a crowd-pleasing destination. This list will mostly avoid the more obvious examples of the attractions which pull people into the parks by the millions each year. Mostly. There will be little to no coverage of the new Diagon Alley area here and we’ll be sticking to the theme parks exclusively, so that means nothing about CityWalk or the resort where we stayed. You’ll have to wait for information on those topics in later posts.
Got it? Let’s begin!
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What the Hell Happened to Tobey Maguire?


Tobey Maguire

Tobey Maguire

Tobey Maguire is best-known as the first movie Spider-man.  But before he donned the blue and red tights, Maguire was a promising actor who seemed destined for a long career.  During the 90’s, Maguire built a reputation as a talented actor in a string of independent movies.  After he crossed over into the mainstream, Maguire continued supplementing his super hero duties with high profile dramatic roles.  But after he hung up his Spidey-suit, Maguire practically disappeared from the big screen.

What the hell happened?

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Marvel Movie Bracket Game: Spider-man 2 Vs . Captain America: Winter Soldier


Spider-man 2 vs Winter Soldier

Avengers: Age of Ultron has kicked off the summer movie season.  To celebrate, we’re spending the first half of May looking at Marvel movies.  The superhero genre was dominated for decades by Warner Brothers with its Batman and Superman movies.  But in recent years, Marvel has become the dominant force.  Not only have they taken the momentum from their distinguished competition, they have pushed superheroes into the spotlight.  Nowadays, the cineplexes are overflowing with movies based on Marvel comics.  Which one will rise above the rest?  That’s up to you, True Believer.

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Marvel Movie Bracket Game: Spider-man 2 Vs. X-Men 2


Spider-man 2 vs. X-Men 2

Avengers: Age of Ultron has kicked off the summer movie season.  To celebrate, we’re spending the first half of May looking at Marvel movies.  The superhero genre was dominated for decades by Warner Brothers with its Batman and Superman movies.  But in recent years, Marvel has become the dominant force.  Not only have they taken the momentum from their distinguished competition, they have pushed superheroes into the spotlight.  Nowadays, the cineplexes are overflowing with movies based on Marvel comics.  Which one will rise above the rest?  That’s up to you, True Believer.

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Marvel Movie Bracket Game: Blade Vs. Spider-man 2


Blade Vs. Spider-man 2

Avengers: Age of Ultron has kicked off the summer movie season.  To celebrate, we’re spending the first half of May looking at Marvel movies.  The superhero genre was dominated for decades by Warner Brothers with its Batman and Superman movies.  But in recent years, Marvel has become the dominant force.  Not only have they taken the momentum from their distinguished competition, they have pushed superheroes into the spotlight.  Nowadays, the cineplexes are overflowing with movies based on Marvel comics.  Which one will rise above the rest?  That’s up to you, True Believer.

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Kirsten Dunst Gallery

Marvel Movie Bracket Game: Spider-man Vs. Spider-man 2


Spider-man Vs. Spider-man 2

Avengers: Age of Ultron kicks off the summer movie season on May 1.  To celebrate, we’re spending the first half of May looking at Marvel movies.  The superhero genre was dominated for decades by Warner Brothers with its Batman and Superman movies.  But in recent years, Marvel has become the dominant force.  Not only have they taken the momentum from their distinguished competition, they have pushed superheroes into the spotlight.  Nowadays, the cineplexes are overflowing with movies based on Marvel comics.  Which one will rise above the rest?  That’s up to you, True Believer.

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