The cast of Madame Webb in a subway station looking confused

Madame Web

March 25, 2024
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I think the biggest travesty (out of many) in this one came in the form of what the production thought a Metro North train to Poughkeepsie looked like. Big lol all around.

Set in Sony’s Spider-Man Universe (SSU), Madame Web follows a paramedic, Cassandra Webb (Dakota Johnson), after she inexplicably receives the superpowered ability to peer into the future. Seeing some particularly bad things coming down the line for not only herself but three young women, Julia Cornwall (Sydney Sweeney), Anya Corazon (Isabela Merced), and Mattie Franklin (Celeste O’Connor), Cassandra takes it upon herself to save these girls from a fate worse than death, all the while being ruthlessly hunted by a superpowered enemy who looks an awful lot like a certain “Friendly Neighborhood Hero,” just without the responsibility, funny quips, and *thwips*.

I’m convinced this movie is the first film written, directed, and acted exclusively by A.I. despite knowing the contrary, something I’d actually be okay with if only because this movie is an embarrassment for any human to admit they’ve worked on. From its soulless, exposition-riddled script to its unlikable, uninteresting, and simply useless characters to its nausea-inducing cinematography, editing, and special effects to damn near everything else, Madame Web is an expectedly terrible movie, to be sure, yet the depths of its terribleness quickly spiraled into something I somehow still underestimated by the time the credits rolled.

Trying to squeeze every piece of potential coinage out of any character even tangentially related to Spider-Man, Madame Web tries to tell a story of a Marvel Comics “hero” that even I don’t know much about — and take it from me, I know a lot about all things comics. Boring at best and cringe everywhere else, the actors involved — Dakota Johnson, in particular — don’t seem to know what they’ve gotten themselves into here, as each new scene and twist in the plot gets progressively worse to a point that I wouldn’t have been surprised if news broke that Sony ended up shelving the entire project a la Warner Bros. and wrote it off for tax purposes.

If I had to give this movie any credit, it’d be that it’s so incredibly bad that it almost comes out the other side as a guilty pleasure train wreck of a film, the likes of which deserve a riff track commentary at the very least, and in twenty years time, a weird cult following championed by people who love the movie for reasons that shouldn’t be celebrated nor discussed. Madame Web rightfully killed any franchise this character might have had before it got even ten minutes in, further proving that Sony needs to let these failed villain-centric movies die. Maybe Kraven the Hunter will be good? Venom: The Last Dance? Unlikely.

I think the biggest travesty (out of many) in this one came in the form of what the production thought a Metro North train to Poughkeepsie looked like. Big lol all around. Set in Sony’s Spider-Man Universe (SSU), Madame Web follows a paramedic, Cassandra Webb (Dakota Johnson), after she inexplicably receives the superpowered ability to peer into the future. Seeing some particularly bad things coming down the line for not only herself but three young women, Julia Cornwall (Sydney Sweeney), Anya Corazon (Isabela Merced), and Mattie Franklin (Celeste O’Connor), Cassandra takes it upon herself to save these girls from a fate worse than death, all the while being ruthlessly hunted by a superpowered enemy who looks an awful lot like a certain "Friendly Neighborhood Hero," just without the responsibility, funny quips, and *thwips*. I’m convinced this movie is the first film written, directed, and acted exclusively by A.I. despite knowing the contrary, something I'd actually be okay with if only because this movie is an embarrassment for any human to admit they’ve worked on. From its soulless, exposition-riddled script to its unlikable, uninteresting, and simply useless characters to its nausea-inducing cinematography, editing, and special effects to damn near everything else, Madame Web is an expectedly terrible movie, to be sure, yet the depths of its terribleness quickly spiraled into something I somehow still underestimated by the time the credits rolled. Trying to squeeze every piece of potential coinage out of any character even tangentially related to Spider-Man, Madame Web tries to tell a story of a Marvel Comics “hero” that even I don’t know much about — and take it from me, I know a lot about all things comics. Boring at best and cringe everywhere else, the actors involved — Dakota Johnson, in particular — don’t seem to know what they’ve gotten themselves into here, as each new scene and twist in the plot gets progressively worse to a point that I wouldn’t have been surprised if news broke that Sony ended up shelving the entire project a la Warner Bros. and wrote it off for tax purposes. If I had to give this movie any credit, it’d be that it’s so incredibly bad that it almost comes out the other side as a guilty pleasure train wreck of a film, the likes of which deserve a riff track commentary at the very least, and in twenty years time, a weird cult following championed by people who love the movie for reasons that shouldn’t be celebrated nor discussed. Madame Web rightfully killed any franchise this character might have had before it got even ten minutes in, further proving that Sony needs to let these failed villain-centric movies die. Maybe Kraven the Hunter will be good? Venom: The Last Dance? Unlikely.

4.5

Web of Lies

The Verdict

4.5

5

Brian is first and foremost a nerd in every way shape and form. He likes to compare himself to a black hole, consuming any and every form of entertainment unlucky enough to get caught in his gravitational pull. It's not uncommon on any given day for him to read a couple comics, settle down with a good book, watch a few movies (inside and out of the theater), catch up on his ever growing but never depleting Hulu queue, challenge himself with a few good video games, listen to any music he can get his hands on and, of course, write his heart out. He spends every waking moment dreaming up interesting and intriguing concepts and ideas that will hopefully one day inspire and entertain anyone looking for an escape from their daily lives. Graduating from Full Sail University in good old humid Florida, Brian currently lives and works in New York City and is waiting for the day when all he has to do is wake up and create something unique and new for people to enjoy. He is always in the process of writing scripts and stories and is constantly on the lookout for ways to enhance and build his creative drive. After all, life is just one big story, all that really matters is how you strive to make it the best story possible. Disclaimer: Brian does not actually have powdered green skin in case anyone was wondering. A Skrull I am not. Blame the guys at the Color Run for this one.

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