Web of emotion

The best tales of the supernatural, from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, use fantasy to dramatize emotions that are too dark and overpowering to be treated conventionally. Sam Raimi’s marvelous Spider-Man 2 takes audiences into some pretty deep waters too. It’s about Peter Parker’s guilt over not being able to prevent the killing of his uncle (in the first Spider-Man picture). It’s also about the way his secret identity as Spider-Man and his love for M. J. Watson pull him in opposite directions. (Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst pick up the roles they created in Spider-Man.) These conflicts cripple him: at crucial moments, he finds his supernatural gifts have deserted him.


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