Analyzing The Spider-Man 3 Editors Cut. Is It Worth Your Time?

Fans have been wanting another cut of Spider-Man 3 for a very long time and now our prayers have been answered, however does it hold up? Come take a look to find out.

Many fans are divided on the exact quality of Spider-Man 3. While the general consensus is that it is the weakest entry in the series many people are torn whether or not it's a good movie or a good Spider-Man movie in its own right. I'm personally in the camp of enjoying Spider-Man 3, does it have it's problems? Sure, but the movie was enjoyable overall.

However many people myself included have wanted another cut of Spider-Man 3 for a long time, as we know there is quite a lot on the cutting room floor. However with Sony rebooting the series in 2012 with the Amazing Spider-Man franchise our hopes were dashed for any kind of alternate version of Spider-Man 3. Until 10 years after it's release where we now have what is known as Spider-Man 3: The Editors Cut.

So how is this new cut overall? Does it fix every issue every fan had with Spider-Man 3? Is it the perfect cap to the trilogy we all desperately wanted? To put it shortly, no. While there are new scenes added and scenes taken out most of them are very inconsequential. So you're getting a slightly new cut of the same movie, same story, same ending, with small details changed to make a different experience.

However I ask you this question, is the movie still even the slightest bit better with these changes? I'm here to tell you my thoughts on this new cut, and if you ever decide to watch Spider-Man 3 again, which one should you sit through? Scenes from this cut will be used although I do apologize in advance for the quality, I was not able to upload the scenes myself so I took what I could get. 

Part One: Changes.

To start things off it's best to discuss what exactly is different about this film compared to its theatrical cut. What scenes were cut, what scenes were added in? And what is the difference in run time between the two cuts. I'll make sure to list it out in point form, as although the changes are very small there is a good amount of them. 
  • Christoper Young's original score of the film is completely restored, with many scenes which didn't have music in the original cut now having it, a new theme for Peter and MJ is included.
  • A shot of Peter looking cautiously at the box that holds the black suit is added in the middle of the twist scene with Harry and Mary Jane.
  • Peters apology to Mr Ditkovich is cut and replaced with a scene of Ursula telling Peter Mary Jane is on the phone, where Peter apologizes to her right there. 
  • The order of the fight between Harry and Peter and the scene at the Daily Bugle are switched. 
  • There is a scene of Peter being tempted by the black suit (which happens to be breathing) right before going out to in public to see the fake photo Eddie made. 
  • After the confrontation at the Bugle we see new footage of the Black Suited Spider-Man swinging in the daytime, for Peter to then remove the suit and go meet Harry at the coffee shop. 
  • There is an alternate beginning to the fight with Harry where Peter and Harry are quipping with each other before the fight starts.
  • The spinning newspaper from the James Brown montage is removed.
  • After Sandman is reformed there is a scene where he sees his daughter again as a sandcastle, where she sees a hand print and embraces said castle, before her mother calls her to leave. 
  • The scene where Aunt May talks to Peter in his apartment is cut.
  • The scene with the Butler telling Harry about what happened to his father is cut and replaced with a scene of him seeing a broken picture frame with him, Peter and Mary Jane, which he then proceeds to cry. 
As for the run time it has been confirmed by multiple sources that the Editors cut is actually 2 minutes shorter than the theatrical cut. So again like stated above the changes are very small for the most part, however this doesn't necessarily mean they are bad. Allow me to discuss the film in full. 

Part Two: The Good

How do these changes affect the film? Despite the small changes overall there are a good amount of things here that are far superior to the theatrical cut. While most of the problems fans had with the movie have not been resolved such as Emo Peter, the dance scene, or the films interpretation of Venom (or as I like to call him "Carnage painted black") there are still little changes that do enhance the experience slightly and show more of the good film this could have been, and most of it shockingly has to do with the Black Suit. 

In the original cut the black suit is mostly played for laughs, most of the comedic scenes being very, unsuccessful in their attempts to make the audience laugh. 

In the original cut we mostly saw these kind of scenes with the Black suit, not allowing us any kind of dread or fear of the suit, making it just seem like some weird thing that made Peter act like a tool. However this cut does take things in a slightly different direction, and it is one for the better. There are more scenes now dedicated to the Black Suit being seen as this other worldy almost evil presence, or like some kind of addiction/drug. That example best being illustrated in this scene right here. 

This scene is legitimately frightening due to how well the score is used along with the acting from Maguire, scenes like this are added into the movie and are now in the film more than the comedic bits, thus allowing the suit to be more scary as it should be, while it doesn't negate the problems from before it does make them slightly more tolerable. 

I will also say that the new bits added in to exchange the orders of the Bugle scene and Harry mansion fight works much more in the films favour. Despite the fact that those scenes play out the same  as before having them switched does make a bit more sense, as we now have Peter going from exposing Eddie to fighting and thinking he killed Harry. Where as before where the opposite is true, it makes little sense for Peter to not kill (or at least think he did) again after doing so to Harry and Sandman. This does cause a slight problem when it comes to the James Brown montage but we'll get to that later. So while this was a small change it was a welcome one. 

Another good element I want to discuss is this scene with Flint becoming a sandcastle to see his daughter again, in the original script this scene is where Venom and Sandman meet for the first time, where Venom kidnaps Penny and forces Sandman to help him kill Spider-Man. However here it is used in a different light, the section with Venom has been cut and has now been used as a way to show Flints connection to his daughter, which does help be slightly more sympathetic than he was before. 

This scene is placed immediately after Sandman reforms himself following the fight with Spider-Man in the subway, in which he looks at his locket of Penny and goes looking for her, only to find her and say the lines "He stopped me once, he won't stop me again" Making him searching for Spider-Man when Venom shows up a lot more plausible than before. So again while a small change, it does make Sandman a slightly better character, so it's welcomed.

There is one more positive element in this cut I would like to discuss. What is I would call the biggest change in the film, unlike before where Peter asks for Harry's help only for the butler to convince him to help by telling him what happened to his real father we now have a scene that is much more effective, where Harry comes to his decision without the help of any outside force, just noticing a broken picture frame, showing how broken his friendship was, and how despite what Peter did, he wants to fix it. 

This scene is much better for Harry's character arc, as the film is still fundamentally about forgiveness, having Harry forgive Peter because he realized how good they were together, how good of a friend he was, and how much MJ needs them makes a lot more sense than then him just forgiving Peter when the butler told him he didn't do it, the Butler telling him for no given reason at that moment. This is the final change to the film, but it is one that is arguably the best change made to the film compared to the original. 

However not every change made to the film was exactly a positive one, and those would need to be discussed as well, while there arn't as many they are still noticeable. 

Part Three: The Bad.

This section will be much shorter than the one up above as although there are still negatives to be dissected there is more good than bad here, however when this movie still suffers from the same problem as the original the fact that more flaws were added is a bit disheartening, even if they are the smallest ones. 

Remember before how I mentioned that switching the Bugle scenes and Harry fight caused a slight problem with the James Brown montage? I know what you're thinking, "There can be more wrong with that scene?" Yes, there can be, and there is in this cut. Here is the best way I can explain it. 

In the original cut we see Peter start dancing and going down the street after taking down Eddie at the bugle, with the newspaper showing that Eddie got fired, thus the film was trying to make this dancing scene an almost triumphant moment for Peter, like "I just got rid of my competition, yay me". However we now have that scene at the bugle happening earlier, with this James Brown dance happening right after Peter thinks he just killed Harry or at the very least attempted to kill Harry, causing a massive jarring tonal shift.  

The big issue with the scene before was just it not fitting into the film, however having it happen right after our main character just did something deplorable, something we should be scared of, we have him dancing and acting like a dweeb. The better alternative would have been too either cut out this scene completely, (which with the fade to black from the fight with Harry would be much easier to pull off now than before) or move it to right after Sandman reforms, it still wouldn't have worked there, but would have worked better than it did here. 

One final issue with this new cut I want to discuss, and that has to do with the change of Harry finding the broken photo and coming in to help Peter. This is another example of a terrible tonal shift in the film, although this one is less avoidable than the other one. Originally we had Harry finding out about what really happened to his father, causing him to forgive Peter due to him finding out new information, which while not as interesting, does make sense. Allowing him to go back to talking to Peter as a best friend, calling him things like "Pete" and "Buddy". 

While that was a bit jarring in the original cut I could sort of see why Harry would turn like that so quickly, cause he realized Peter really was a good person the whole time, and didn't kill his father, and with everything forgiven they could go back to the way things were. However now, we have Harry helping Peter while still believing Peter killed his father, so having him call Peter nick names and acting like his sidekick during the final fight is really distracting and makes no sense, he would be all business and trying to save MJ. 

However like I said unless they re shot the final fight this is not something that could be fixed by just cutting things and moving them around, thus it's a pick your poison kind of situation. Do you prefer a bad scene explaing why Harry helps Peter, but with a more reasonable reason as to why he's all chipper and happy with Peter in the final fight of the movie? Or do you prefer a really well done scene explaining why Harry helps Peter, but with a more jarring tonal shift? The choice is up to you. 

Part Four: Conclusion, Is It Worth It?

So now we get to the final questions of the day. Is this new cut of Spider-Man 3 better or worse than the original? Is it worth picking up? It's a little complicated to explain my exact feelings towards this version of the film, cause while the changes are small in scale they do make some differences in my opinion of the film, it wasn't the exact same film we got on the DVD, those small scenes did add some things to make my experience one I was happy to sit through.

Overall is Spider-Man 3 The Editors Cut better than the theatrical cut? I would say yes, while it is only better by a small margin it is still enough for me to recommend you watch this film over the original if you decide to re watch the film at all. Characters are improved on if only slightly and if anything the new score for the film is a welcome addition, as it is very different from Elfmans work on the previous two films.

But the other question you have is, would I recommend buying it? If you can find a way to get it separately on the cheap I would say go for it. However, unless you live in the United States there is only one way to see this cut of the film is by purchasing the Spider-Man Origins Collection.

While this is certainly a nice box set for people who have not already purchased these films on Blu ray the retail price for this in Canada is 30 dollars. Which for all 3 movies, plus 2.1 and the Editors cut is a good deal, however, it is not worth paying that kind of money for this cut of Spider-Man 3 alone, as aside from this cut and a small featurette with Stan Lee hyping up homecoming all of special features are the same ones from previous releases. If you don't have the previous films on Blu ray than definitely pick this up, as it's the better deal to get the movies than buying them separately. 

Overall I would have to give the original cut of Spider-Man 3 a 5/10 while this editors cut of Spider-Man 3 gets a 6/10.  This is a cut of the film I am happy to have in my collection and if I ever decide to marathon through all the Spider-Man films again this will be the cut I watch when I get to Spider-Man 3. Thank you for reading this, I hope you enjoyed my analysis of this film, I want to know what you think about the idea of an alternate Spider-Man 3 cut and this article, Tell me your thoughts down below. Goodnight everybody. 

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