Spider-Man: Homecoming has finally arrived in theaters, and judging by box office receipts and reviews, people really love Tom Holland’s first go around as Spider-Man. So, now that we’ve all seen the film and have our opinions on it compared to the other previous films, it’s time to do what comic book fans love to do – rank them! Is Homecoming better than Spider-Man 2? What about the first Raimi film? Where does Andrew Garfield’s films rank? Don’t worry, we got your answers!
RELATED: 15 Spider-Man Movie Villains Ranked
Now, it wouldn’t be fun to just rank the six major big budget releases. So, let’s throw some wild cards into the mix. Spider-Man has appeared in more movies than you might think, so it’s worthwhile to compare every appearance of the friendly neighborhood webslinger. In this list, you’ll find everything from the big budget films we all know and (somewhat) love to those lovely TV movies from the late ‘70s and even a couple foreign films as well. There’s also an appearance by a fan film that definitely deserves to be included. However, this isn’t just a listing of all the films. This is the definitive list of how each film ranks. So, let’s get started!
15. SPIDER-MAN 3
Spider-Man 3 is at the bottom of the list, and deservedly so. This final Sam Raimi film from 2007 almost completely killed the Spider-Man film franchise, and you can almost blame it all on two dance scenes. We all know about the terrible “cool guy” Peter Parker and his horrible dancing, but even more cringe-inducing is probably the scene with James Franco and Kirsten Dunst.
The idea that anyone thought a dance scene between Harry Osborne and Mary Jane making breakfast while they listen to “The Twist” is cool and appropriate for a Spider-Man film is mind-boggling. Of course this scene is part of a film that features the worst incarnation of Venom ever, along with a horrible Gwen Stacy, which also ensure it will be at the bottom of this list. And yes, there are 14 films featuring Spider-Man that are much better than this dreck.
14. ITALIAN SPIDERMAN
If you have never heard of Italian Spiderman, then you are missing out! Italian Spiderman (without the hyphen, by the way) is a 2007 spoof of ‘60s Italian action films. The idea of the film is to poke fun at how countries outside the US co-opt popular heroes and use them in completely crazy ways (more on that later in the list). Italian Spiderman features a Spiderman that is unlike any we’ve seen before. He’s a rude, overweight superhero that is a heavy smoker. Definitely not Peter Parker.
The reason it falls so low on this list is because it’s so strange and crazy that it isn’t very Spidey-centric and only good in small doses. If you watch the trailer, you’ll get a good laugh, but the whole film is a bit hard to make it through. Still better than Spider-Man 3, though.
13. THE GREEN GOBLIN’S LAST STAND
Back when James Cameron was flirting with the idea of doing Spider-Man, lifelong fan Dan Poole wanted to show the director he had the chops to pull off the character. Thus, Poole created a fan film called The Green Goblin’s Last Stand, based on the famous “The Night Gwen Stacy Died” comic story. With no budget, no real talent, but a ton of passion, Poole put together a pretty decent fan film.
While the film lacks great acting or effects, Poole was still able to give us a live-action Spidey that was true to the comics. The stunt work alone is enough to get you excited, especially considering he did all the stunts without very much protection at all. While ultimately, it doesn’t rank highly because of the acting, dialogue, and everything else not stunt-related, Goblin’s Last Stand is still a valiant effort in a time when there weren’t as many fan films out there.
12. SPIDER-MAN STRIKES BACK
Spider-Man Strikes Back comes from episodes of the late-70s live-action Spider-man TV series. Eventually the individual episodes were cut together and repackaged as a film. Unfortunately, these episodes weren’t a great representation of the work that was being done on the TV series. You have to cut them some slack for the special effects, as they weren’t able to give us the amazing stunts we see today, but even still, the resulting film is lackluster.
A lot of what makes Spider-Man Strikes Back lame is the story. Instead of fighting a larger than life villain, Spider-Man is forced to track down missing plutonium and diffusing a bomb. Along the way, he fights some henchmen and some guys who know karate, but overall, Spider-Man Strikes Back just gives viewers a very boring example of the Web-head.
11. LEGO MARVEL SUPER HEROES: AVENGERS REASSEMBLED
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Avengers Reassembled is a long title for what amounts to a LEGO version of Avengers: Age of Ultron. As the Avengers are planning a party, Ultron attacks and the Avengers have to defeat him and stop him from using Iron Man’s armor. So, why is it on the Spider-Man list? Well, these LEGO animated films throw almost every Marvel character they can in there, and Spider-Man shows up in this film.
Voiced by famous voice actor Benjamin Diskin, Spider-Man is shown as the comic-accurate hero that fans love. He’s funny, silly, and also loveable. Even though he may not play a major role in the film, and he’s also animated to look like a LEGO figurine, the Spider-Man that appears in Reassembled is a worthy entry on the list, and better than anything seen in Spider-Man 3.
10. SPIDER-MAN: THE DRAGON’S CHALLENGE
In the ‘70s, everyone loved Kung Fu films. So, why not have Spider-Man in his own Hong Kong film? That’s why Spider-Man: The Dragon’s Challenge ranks so highly on this list. In the film, which is another repurposed use of the Spider-Man TV series, viewers watch as Spider-Man goes to Hong Kong to defeat enemies to clear the name of J. Jonah Jameson’s friend, Min. That premise alone should get you salivating!
Again, the special effects aren’t the stuff of legend, but the film does give audiences scenes of Spider-Man doing battle in Hong Kong. He rides the boats along the canals while fighting martial artists! It’s so weird, but also wonderful at the same time. It’s unlike anything you’ll see from a big budget Spider-Man.
9. LEGO MARVEL SUPER HEROES: MAXIMUM OVERLOAD
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload is very similar to Avengers Reassembled, but with much more Spidey action. In this film, we don’t just see LEGO Spider-Man, we also get appearances from Doctor Octopus, Green Goblin, and J. Jonah Jameson. There’s even a fight between Venom and Spider-Man, which is worth watching the film by itself as pretty much the closest thing we have to a good live-action rendition of that feud.
Now, since this is a LEGO Marvel Super Heroes film, it’s not all about Spider-Man. The main story features Loki as he tries to “overload” Marvel villains to help him defeat the Avengers. Thus, not only is it a fun story featuring Spider-Man, it’s a fun story with pretty much the entire Marvel Universe involved. Also, at the end, the Spider-Bike makes an appearance!
8. JAPANESE SPIDER-MAN
If you were going to imagine what a Japanese version of Spider-Man would include, you would have to guess there would be giant robots. And you’d be right! In a licensing deal with Marvel, Japanese production company Toei got the rights to Spider-Man, and boy did they go crazy with it!
Toei created a long-running TV series about Spider-Man, that also included one movie. The reason this ranks so highly on the list is just how unique the story is. Throw out everything you know about Spider-Man, except the suit. In this version, Spider-Man got his powers from an alien spacecraft, and when times get tough, and the villains grow to huge sizes, Spider-Man calls upon Leopardon, the huge mech that he pilots to defeat bad guys. It’s like Spider-Man meets Power Rangers, and you have to see it to believe it!
7. SPIDER-MAN (1977)
Back before Spider-Man was seen in the live-action series in 1978, CBS put together a made-for-television film in 1977 to act as a pilot episode for a potential series. The film went on to become a big hit for the network, and viewers were rewarded with the eventual TV series.
While the film has its obvious flaws, it’s a fairly faithful retelling of the famous Spider-Man origin story. The most major change to the series is the fact that Peter Parker is bitten when he’s already a freelance photographer for the Daily Bugle. The film had some revolutionary special effects, and it really does feel like a Spider-Man film. However, for all the charm found in the film, it isn’t the best representation of Spider-Man. The main villain is pretty forgettable, and outside of Nicolas Hammond as Peter, the acting is a little subpar.
6. THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
When Andrew Garfield was cast as the next Peter Parker, after Tobey Maguire’s time as Spidey came to an end, everyone was excited. Then Emma Stone joined the cast, alongside Sally Field and Martin Sheen as Aunt May and Uncle Ben respectively. Things were looking up! Unfortunately, the end result wasn’t great.
You can’t really blame Garfield, though. He does his best to be Peter Parker, but he’s just too damn handsome. He is never able to pull of the dorky Peter that fans expected. Even with his great chemistry with Stone’s Gwen Stacy, it just didn’t feel right. Perhaps worst of all, the film just felt like an “emo” retelling of the origin story, which is a story that we’ve seen time after time. Sony just went too far into the “serious” side of things after Raimi’s trilogy went silly, and the fans just didn’t respond well.
5. SPIDER-MAN (2002)
When 2002’s Spider-Man hit theaters, people went nuts. The film had the biggest opening weekend of all time, and the superhero craze we are experiencing now fully kicked into gear. Unfortunately, in retrospect, the film just can’t stack up to some of the more modern versions of the character.
Sure, there’s charm for days in Spider-Man. The film gives us a dorky, nerdy Peter Parker, and for the first time ever, a fully-realized Spider-Man. We see things in that film that we have never seen before. However, we also get an over-acting Willem Dafoe as Green Goblin. We also get the horrible organic webshooters. Then, for no reason, there’s a musical break with Macy Gray. The film feels dated, and even though it was the first, it’s not the best.
4. THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2
It must be said that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is better than Raimi’s first Spider-Man. For all the flaws the film has, and it sure does have some major flaws, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 gives viewers some of the best Spider-Man moments to ever grace the big screen. On top of that, the film features what is, by far, the best on-screen Spider-Man suit.
Electro sucks. Sure. Dane DeHaan’s Green Goblin is laughable. But you know what? The scenes between Gwen Stacy and Peter Parker are electric. So much so, that when she dies, and we all know it’s coming, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Also, let’s talk about the little boy at the end. Yes, the Rhino scenes were extraneous, but when Spider-Man comes out and thanks the kid for being brave, that epitomizes who Spider-Man is, and why we love him in the first place. This film is unjustly hated.
3. CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR
If you saw Captain America: Civil War, you experienced this. When the film puts up the Queens title card, your theater probably erupted into applause. Why? Because Peter Parker was about to enter the picture. Then for the next 30-ish minutes, you were part of an impromptu Spider-Man film.
Civil War gives viewers an introduction to Peter Parker and Spider-Man, and does it better than almost every other film before it. In the short scene between Peter and Tony Stark, you get a quick origin and you immediately fall in love with Tom Holland’s portrayal of Peter. Then for the airport fight, you get to see Spider-Man move in ways you’ve only seen in comics. You see him fighting Captain America, Falcon, Winter Soldier, and Giant-Man. It’s pure fanboy bliss. Those 30 minutes are almost enough to make it to the top of the list, but not quite.
2. SPIDER-MAN 2
By far the best of the Raimi trilogy, Spider-Man 2 is the first superhero film to not only appeal to fans, but also pull in critics, as well. In the film, we see some of the most iconic superhero scenes to ever show on film, and we get what is, without a doubt, one of the best villains in a superhero film.
Alfred Molina’s Doctor Otto Octavius is almost perfect. He looks the part, acts the part, and gives viewers a side of the villain that hasn’t really been seen in the comics before. We also see the incredible subway fight, which ends with what might be the best Spider-Man scene of all time. Watching the citizens of New York see a kid (even though Tobey was definitely NOT a kid) save their lives, then respect him enough to carry him to safety, is incredible. The film was the epitome of what Spider-Man could be on screen, until just recently…
1. SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING
Spider-Man: Homecoming is the film that Spider-Man fans have been waiting for their entire lives. We finally get to see teenage Peter Parker, played flawlessly by Tom Holland, exist in the true Marvel Universe; a universe where Spider-Man can actually interact with the Avengers!
Not only is it great that Peter is now part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but the actual characters in the film are amazing. Topping them all is Michael Keaton’s Adrian Toomes. Keaton takes a character that has never really been taken seriously in the comics, and makes him truly terrifying. Not only that, but he’s also incredibly relatable. You almost want him to win, but of course, that would mean that Peter Parker fails and we don’t want that. Why? Because Tom Holland is the perfect Peter Parker. He’s the only actor to give us a pitch perfect Peter AND Spider-Man. Homecoming is the pinnacle of Spider-Man films, and it can only get better from here!
Which Spider-Man movie is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!
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