Dakota Johnson doesn't understand why a line from Madame Web is causing a buzz

Madame Web would make Morbius look like a masterpiece (review)

This little superheroic Frankenstein’s monster is by far the worst live action film in the “Spider-Verse”.

After the two parts of Venom And Morbius, the Sony studio is scraping the bottom of the drawers of Marvel superheroes that it has the right to exploit in cinema. so here’s Madame Web, a character from the Spider-Man comics and best known to aficionados, which the film adapts in a very (very) free way: after an accident where she comes close to death, paramedic Cassandra Web (Dakota Johnson, lethargic) discovers the ability to see glimpses of the future. Coincidentally, it is at this moment that she crosses paths with three young women (played by Sydney Sweeney, Isabela Merced and Celeste O’Connor) to whom the mysterious Ezekiel Sims (Tahar Rahim, who does what he can), endowed with superhuman powers, wants to hide.

A decent basis for a fantastic thriller, but to get there, the film takes impossible detours between the Amazon – where Cassandra’s mother lost her life while looking for a spider with magical venom – and a secret CIA program which comes at the right time to justify the unfolding of the plot. The scenario, absurd as soon as it tries to justify its mythology, multiplies the inconsistencies and the explanatory dialogues to the point of overdose. A real little Frankenstein’s monster, whose scars we constantly see (dialogues reduplicated in post-production here, a sequence entirely cut there…). The assembly must have been an ordeal.


Boredom lurks, the actors are on autopilot and director SJ Clarkson proves incapable of catching up with the story in terms of staging: Cassandra’s power only inspires ultra-repetitive flash-forwards, so that its illegible division of the action removes all tension from the rare moments supposed to provide adrenaline.

Without taste or smell, Madame Web looks like a prehistoric superhero movie, as if it had been locked in a safe for 20 years before anyone dared to take it out. Moreover, for some reason that still escapes us, the action is supposed to take place in 2003 (a time which here boils down to vintage telephones, Toxic of Britney Spears in the background, Pepsi product placements everywhere and a giant poster of Beyoncé promoting the album Dangerously in Love. Nice reconstruction). It’s high time that someone from Sony decided to pull the plug on this poor man’s “Spider-Verse”.

Madame Web, by SJ Clarkson, with Dakota Johnson, Tahar Rahim, ydney Sweeney, Isabela Merced, Celeste O’Connor… Duration: 1 hour 57 minutes. Currently in cinemas.

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