By DiMarkco Chandler
This Tuesday, July 3, 2012, moviegoers are in for a unique treat. Someone has finally directed a Superhero movie with the right balance of drama, action, comedy, adventure and special effects. That movie is “The Amazing Spider-Man.”
Alright, as most of you already know, I did not fashion this title in any way whatsoever. “The Amazing Spider-Man” is the title of this amazing piece of directorial work on the part of “Marc Webb.” Nevertheless, sometimes a movie’s title can satisfactorily indicate its special superior quality above all others that have taken similar paths. In the case of the word “The,” it perhaps give us a glimpse of the suggestive importance or emphasis that producers wanted to draw attention to, which is the idea or at least provokes the impression that this Spider-Man movie is “Amazing.” Were they successful? Is the movie truly “Amazing?”
While I would like to stop here and get into a brief overview of the film, I can’t help but to take the opportunity to discuss the semantics of the movie’s title, especially when I notice how meaningfully relative this title has become. In fact, it highlights the quality I might find at the conclusion of my evaluation.
Amazing is one thing, but “The Amazing” is another. Perhaps I could better explain it like this: What if the movie was titled “Spider-Man.” This would suggest that there might have been other Spider-Man movies or characters, but they would be by definition one of many. “The Spider-Man,” however, would suggest a special quality resides in the specific identifiable and recognizable Spider-Man referenced. It would be the same idea if I said “hand me a rock” or “hand me the rock.” First, I indicate a rock of many and suggest in the command that you do the choosing of which rock; in the latter I chose which rock you handed me by use of “the” (indicating definite article), which also implies that you know which rock I’m talking about because it is the only rock present or that is has a quality that we both understand represents it and distinguishes its uniqueness. However, if we take the same analogy to describe amazing with the use of the definite article “The,” we can conclude that our definite article is not only tied to “Amazing” but also tied to “Spider-Man,” thus clearly and explicitly providing its distinctive quality by virtue of the adjective of choice (amazing). Now we know that our unique “Spider-Man” is amazing; unique because of the definite article (the).
Finally, we have to address the word or rather two words separated by a hyphen. The first word is “Spider” and the second word on the right side of the hyphen is “Man.” Here again we have a clear indication of what “The Amazing Spider-Man” is about in terms of its meaning. Though the hyphen is also in the original “Spider-Man,” I will need to introduce additional information to help you understand how it differs from the original. So why is this distinction important in my analysis? Enter director “Marc Webb.”
In a June 30, 2012 review offered by “The Miami Herald,” we learn that “Sony Pictures decided to scrap a planned fourth entry of director Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man film series and start again from scratch…, Marc Webb, a veteran maker of music videos with only one feature film to his credit (the indie romantic comedy (500) Days of Summer) was handed the keys to one of the biggest and most profitable franchises to the studio’s stable.” The question might be how did he manage to land the job with such a limited body of work? Well, according to “The Miami Herald,” Webb presented a perspective on the web-slinger different from everyone else’s: He concentrated on the man, not the suit” (Spider). Thus, while the previous director of all three earlier Spider-Man movies had great success in his interpretation of the comic book hero, Webb would emphasis the word on the right side of the hyphen; “Man.”
In summary, I have found that the title “The Amazing Spider-Man” reflects the breath of the content presented by its director so much that I am afraid of diminishing your experience by adding to this analysis.