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Spider-Man: Special Edition

Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) is a geeky high-schooler with a crush on his next door neighbor Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst). He lives with his Aunt May (Rosemary Harris) and Uncle Ben (Cliff Robertson), and his only friend is Harry Osborn (James Franco), whose father Norman (Willem Dafoe) is a famous scientist. On a field trip to a science lab, Peter is bitten by a genetically engineered super-spider, which gives him the ability to spin webs, climb walls, jump exceptionally far, and preternaturally sense threats. But as Peter adjust to his powers, Norman's corporate military project is threatened by budget cuts, leading the elder Osborn to test his experimental nerve gas on himself. Such grants him superpowers, but also a bad temper that transforms him into the Green Goblin. Haunted by his uncle's advice that "with great power comes great responsibility," Peter transforms himself into Spider-Man, but soon he's confronted by the Goblin. Spider-Man (2002) works because it's driven by its character, not by special effects. Though the film suffers at some obvious faults in lieu of its big budget, it's on solid ground when it deals with the human emotions of its superhero, and the script grants every character something of interest. Columbia TriStar's two-disc Spider-Man: Special Edition is available in both anamorphic widescreen (1.85:1) and in pan-and-scan editions, with audio in Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby 2.0 Surround. Extras include two audio commentaries, one by director Sam Raimi, Dunst, and producers Grant Curtis and Laura Ziskin, the second by the effects team. Also on Disc One are "on-the-fly" links featuring short vignettes, a subtitle fact-track, trailers, TV Spots, and two music videos, "Hero" by Chad Kroeger and "What We're All About" by Sum 41. On Disc Two is the featurette "Spider-Man: Mythology of the 21st Century," stills of Spider-Man art, two fluffy featurettes, screen tests, profiles of Sam Raimi and Danny Elfman, a gag reel, and cast notes. Dual-DVD slimline keep-case.

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