Spidey. Web-slinger. Web-head. Wall-crawler. Underoos. Spider-Man has taken on a lot of names and faces in recent years, yet his charm remains the same. The following is a ranking of every modern Spider-Man movie from the best Spider-Man movies to the worst so far just in time for Spider-Man: Far From Home‘s release on July 2. Keep in mind that Venom, non-theatrical animated outings, and the live-action films released between 1977 and 1981 have not been included.
7. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 fails to learn from its predecessors and tries to stuff way too much into its two-hour-and twenty-two minute run time. As the titular hero tries to stop Electro from shutting down New York City’s power supply, he has to work out his relationship with Gwen Stacy and convince his friend Harry Osborn to stay away from Green Goblin’s allure. While the film clearly sets up a Sinister Six film, a lot of its plot feels disingenuous and clumsy. Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone’s chemistry is certainly noticeable because they dated in real life, but that alone doesn’t prevent The Amazing Spider-Man 2 from being Spider-Man’s most forgettable modern film.
6. The Amazing Spider-Man
The Amazing Spider-Man‘s biggest flaw is that it retreads familiar ground. Instead of focusing on an experienced Spider-Man who’s already taken up the red and blue costume, the movie decides to retell the superhero’s origin story and forces audiences to sit through yet another Uncle Ben murder. Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin may be replaced with Rhys Ifans’ The Lizard, but the new villain fails to leave a lasting impression like the Sam Raimi trilogy’s Goblin. Despite these blemishes, Andrew Garfield’s spin on the character and Peter Parker’s budding romance with Gwen Stacy are enjoyable enough to warrant a viewing.
5. Spider-Man 3
There’s a reason why Spider-Man 3 is the web-head’s most memed movie. A lot of the heart found in Raimi’s first two Spider-Man films feels as though it’s been swapped with a commercial agenda. The overabundance of villains is clearly a ploy to sell toys to kids and the misunderstandings between the film’s cast merely serve to move the plot along. In between hair flips, the film fails to convince viewers how an extraterrestrial symbiote is changing Peter’s personality and powers. This plot thread becomes even more ridiculous when Venom arrives on the scene. Spider-Man 3 is filled with memorable fight scenes with Sandman and New Goblin, but doesn’t end Raimi’s trilogy on a great note.
4. Spider-Man: Homecoming
Thankfully, there are more good Spider-Man movies than bad ones. Spider-Man: Homecoming stars a noticeably young Peter Parker who strives to prove himself to his mentor, Iron Man, after the events of Captain America: Civil War. Spidey’s origin story and the death of his Uncle Ben are only alluded to in this second reboot, as Sony and Marvel figured that fans were up to speed. Tom Holland plays the role of an inexperienced, hardheaded superhero well alongside Michael Keaton’s menacing Vulture, who’s a sympathetic villain with one of the most surprising scenes in the movie and Marvel Cinematic Universe. Homecoming‘s biggest shortcoming is that it doesn’t have as many fight scenes as previous Spider-Man movies but it’s still a smart reintroduction to everyone’s favorite wall-crawler and one of the best movies of the MCU.
Sam Raimi’s first Spider-Man is considered by some to be the first superhero movie that was widely accepted by mainstream audiences, as it had the highest-grossing opening weekend and was the highest-grossest film in the United States during 2002. Though Tobey Maguire’s take on the character isn’t as witty as Andrew Garfield or Tom Holland’s, the actor excellently portrays a superhero who slowly comes to terms with his newfound power and responsibility. Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin contributes to a feeling of inescapable dread, especially when close friends and family members enter the fray. Spider-Man may feel a bit dated as far as special effects are concerned, but it still demands to be seen by web-head fans everywhere.
2. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse seamlessly blends an endearing narrative, clever jokes, meaningful relationships, and a killer soundtrack together to produce not only the greatest animated Spider-Man film, but one of the greatest animated films of all time. Superhero origin stories may be getting stale to some, but Miles Morales’ growth as a character is fascinating thanks to the support of other spider-powered heroes throughout the multiverse. In turn, Peter B. Parker learns how to become a better leader and side characters like Spider-Gwen learn the importance of trust. Its diverse cast also tells a story of a different Spider-Man that lives in a whole other world from the Peter Parker we are used to seeing, which is also why it felt so fresh. The film’s greatest strength is that it isn’t afraid to have fun with Spider-Man’s image in pop culture and dabble in the memes that make the superhero such an icon. It feels as if it was made with every Spidey fan in mind.
1. Spider-Man 2
As down-to-earth as Into the Spider-Verse may be, there’s no refuting Spider-Man 2‘s reputation as one of the best superhero films of all time. Peter Parker desperately tries to maintain his role as Spider-Man while attending college and trying to pay his rent on time. When the love of his life, Mary Jane, reveals that she plans to marry another man, Peter feels as though he’s incapable of serving both his city and himself and gives up his powers. It’s a motif that any millennial can relate to today but through a Spider-Man lens. To top it off, it’s easy to feel sorry for Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus, whose mind quickly descends into madness after his wife’s death. While Thanos, Vulture, and Killmonger have gotten close, the MCU still hasn’t topped Spider-Man 2‘s Doc Ock. Despite it being a superhero movie, Spider-Man 2 is filled with a profound sense of humanity that fans of all ages can relate to no matter if they grew up with the film or are coming to it now.
Though Tom Holland is due for only one more solo outing as Spider-Man after Far From Home, there’s a possibility the actor will return to the role after his contract is over. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is still going strong, after all, and there are plenty of more iconic web-slinger stories for Kevin Feige and his team to tap into. Here’s hoping that each new Spidey film is better than the last and that the live-action version of Mysterio turns out to be just as badass as his comic book counterpart.