Movies: Spidey Swings

It's the first episode of what could be the next great movie series. But it's too high on angst, too low on energy

Hollywood loves comic books, from the Blondie and Dick Tracy B movies of the '30s and '40s to the more recent big-budget franchises of Superman and Batman. There are times (say, every summer) when American movies seem to be one gigantic, endless comic book. The film industry has long been buggy about creepy crawlers too. In the '50s it spawned the mammoth postnuclear monsters of Them (ants) and Tarantula, and 30 years later it bankrolled David Cronenberg's magnificent remake of The Fly.

So the crossbreeding of Spider-Man with new film technology--part of Marvel Comics' adventure in big-budget movies, which began...

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