Here's how this works, we will rank all the MCU live-action Spider-Man films (excluding Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse (2018) only because animation is on a whole other playfield) before Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021). Each of the films will be ranked based on their most awesome scenes, which means the more not-so-awesome scenes we find in the films the more likely they will be at the bottom of our list. Let's see if your favorite Spider-Man movie will make it to the top.
Awesome Scene: Gwen Stacy’s fall was the most climactic and heartbreaking scene in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. This scene was visually stunning and had great VFX that allows viewers to feel suspense as Gwen Stacy is falling to her death. The sequel was not as epic compared to the other Spider-Man films that came before and after. It’s a shame that a scene with tragedy and no dialogue was the most memorable part of this film.
Not-So-Awesome Scene #1: Any scene with Harry Osborn in it, especially his Green Goblin transformation. I get that the character is supposed to resemble a goblin like in the comics, but maybe Sam Raimi was smart to put a Goblin mask on Dafoe instead of an actual makeover.
Not-So-Awesome Scene #2: Any scene with Electro (I’m narrowing it down because this film has major flaws). Electro’s disappointment has more to do with how he was written and his facial CG than Foxx’s acting. Electro would have been an awesome villain for the film since he is one of the most notorious villains Spider-Man faced in the comics. Both Green Goblin and Electro would have been worthy opponents for our superheroes, but their story arcs were a letdown and I can’t help but feel they were trying to pull off a trio battle like in Spider-Man 3.
Awesome Scene #1: Harry and Peter team up against Venom and Sandman. Two best friends that were once enemies decide to set aside their past for the greater good (that would have been a great slogan for the film).
Awesome Scene #2: Peter becomes Venom. This is the sequence of the symbiote taking over Peter’s body as he’s sleeping. He then wakes up to see his once red and blue suit is now black.
Not-So-Awesome Scene #1: Any of the scenes of Peter embracing Venom. This includes the famous scene of Peter dancing all in black, Harry and Peter fighting in the Osborn penthouse, and Peter making MJ jealous. Some of the scenes were funny because Peter is a serious character and it’s the first time we’ve seen him have fun since the first time he was trying out his powers in Spider-Man, but his dark side was super cringy; I wonder if this is how people felt about Christopher Reeve in Superman III? (1983)
Not-So-Awesome Scene #3: Hostless Venom after being separated from Eddie Brock. This is another cringe-worthy scene of bad CGI. Not only did hostless Venom look awkward—it was ugly. The symbiote looked better when it was a black blob than a black blob with a face.
Not-So-Awesome Scene #4: Peter and MJ dancing in the end. What I love about Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy is that it usually ends with Spider-Man swinging his webs across New York City. It ends with hope despite each of the films ending with the death of a character. There was no web-slinging action at the end of Spider-Man 3, but rather a consolation that things might get better between Peter and MJ.
Awesome Scene #1: I saw this movie in theaters, and to my surprise, I wasn’t expecting an acrophobic reaction to the scene of Spider-Man climbing The Washington Monument. This is one of the most escalating scenes of the film, the high-angles put viewers at the edge of their seats and nauseous.
Awesome Scene #2: The scene where Spider-Man attempts to repair the Staten Island ferry boat using his webs. This scene is also an homage to Raimi's Spider-Man 2 in which Peter stops the train from crashing. In addition, Iron Man and Spider-Man have a hero-to-hero talk.
Awesome Scene #3: The final battle between Spider-Man and Vulture takes place on a beach near Coney Island. This scene wasn't an epic conclusion to the film, but it shows Peter's humility for Adrian Toomes and vice versa. While the Vulture is Spider-Man's first supervillain in the comics, his story-arc in the film did not do the character justice, which is why most of the fight scenes of Vulture and Spider-Man did not make it on our awesome scenes list. Interesting fact: most final battles in the Spider-Man movies take place at night.
Not-So-Awesome Scene: Peter is stuck in the warehouse and babbles with his AI suit... not the most memorable part of the film.
Awesome Scene #1: Any scene with The Lizard. The Lizard is one of the scariest Spider-Man villains and the film stays true to this fact. The Lizard is diabolical, clever, and monstrous just as the comics depict him. The Lizard is the perfect choice for Spider-Man’s first supervillain in The Amazing Spider-Man since all the other great contenders were taken by Sam Raimi.
Awesome Scene #2: Spider-Man and the Lizard fight in the library while Stan Lee listens to his headphones.
Awesome Scene #3: Peter reveals himself as Spider-Man to Sheriff Stacy (his girlfriend’s father that already doesn’t like him). What I like about this scene is its choreography, which allows Peter to fight while not revealing his unmasked face until he shows his face into the light.
Not-So-Awesome Scene: The scene of The Lizard confronting Gwen at the lab wasn't a bad scene, but a random one. As I said before, The Lizard is one of the scariest Spider-Man supervillains and this scene was close to becoming a creature feature, but when The Lizard caught Gwen hiding in the lab he dismisses her, which ruins the potential thrill of the scene.
Awesome Scene #1: The scene of Peter fighting against Mysterio after realizing he’s not the hero he thought he was is a battle of nature v. reality and man v. self. Mysterio is known for his illusions which might not seem like a big deal since illusions can’t hurt you, but not knowing what’s real from what’s not gave me Inception (2010) vibes as well as A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). I like the part where Peter is fighting against the illusions of himself. There’s also a scene where Peter thinks he’s saved by Fury when really that was an illusion all along. After seeing this sequence I questioned whether the following events were all part of Mysterio’s grand scheme. While Mysterio isn’t in the same league as Green Goblin, Venom, and Doc Ock, his powers are not to be underestimated.
Awesome Scene #2: The Venice attack scene was one of the best fight scenes in the Spider-Man Homecoming franchise. This is also the scene where we are introduced to Mysterio. The VFX team brought their A-game in this sequence and Mysterio doesn’t look as dorky as he does in the comics, but he still looks like a guy in a goldfish bowl.
Awesome Scene #3: The scene of Peter taking MJ web-slinging with him isn’t as romantic as the one with Kirsten Dunst and Tobey Maguire, but it’s definitely the most hilarious and sweetest one. What I like about this scene is MJ’s first time with Peter as Spider-Man was for a date and not a rescue attempt.
Not-So-Awesome Scene: The end-credit scene confused some fans when we found out that the Maria Hill and Nick Fury we saw in the film are aliens from Captain Marvel. Maybe the film was playing with the theme of illusion and not everything is what it seems, but this was considered to be one of the worst Marvel end-credit scenes, especially since the post-credit scene of Mysterio revealing Peter Parker as Spider-Man is considered to be one of the best MCU post-credits scenes.
Awesome Scene #1: The parade battle is one of my favorite fight scenes in the Sam Raimi trilogy because this is the first time the Green Goblin and Spider-Man are introduced to each other, and they make a great pair (hero to villain speaking). The banter between the two of them in this scene and all other scenes is Tobey Maguire’s best banter as Spider-Man. Also, this scene’s score (Danny Elfman) has a similar timbre to Hulk’s (2003)—another bonus if you’re a fan of both Marvel films.
Awesome Scene #2: Green Goblin gives Spider-Man a 180 talk. Also, my favorite line from Green Goblin is, “In spite of everything you’ve done for them, eventually they will hate you."
Awesome Scene #3: The scene where MJ kisses Peter in disguise as Spider-Man is one of the most unforgettable scenes of the film and has become the famous upside-down kiss. This truly is one of the most romantic scenes out of all the Spider-Man movies.
Awesome Scene #4: This is more of a favorite shot than a scene, but Spider-Man is forced to choose between saving the girl he loves or a ferry of innocent people. This situation is climatic with the split screen of MJ falling and the ferry as a reflection in Peter’s eyes. Very effective.
Awesome Scene #5: The final battle between Spider-Man and Green Goblin. First, Green Goblin is beating the crap out of Peter, like Apollo did to Rocky. Second, I love the reaction shot of the explosion reflecting onto Peter’s eyes. Lastly, Peter finds out that the Green Goblin is no other than his best friend’s father. Then Peter has no choice but to kill him… accidentally.
Not-So-Awesome Scene: The scene of MJ almost being sexually harassed by the men after walking down a dark alley was not my favorite. The scene was uniquely shot in a bird’s-eye-view where we are looking down at MJ running away from the bad men and Peter puts on the Spider suit. However, I found this scene to be cringe-worthy because of how it stereotypically depicts MJ as the damsel in distress.
There are so many awesome scenes in Sam Raimi’s second installment of Spider-Man, which is why it’s at the top of our ranking list.
Awesome Scene #1: The train fight scene is a fan favorite in addition to Tobey Maguire’s constipated face as he stops the train from crashing.
Awesome Scene 2: “Spider-Man no more.” Peter gives up the Spider mask...goosebumps.
Awesome Scene #3: MJ knows Peter Parker is Spider-Man.
Awesome Scene #4: Spider-Man fighting Doc Ock on a building and Aunt May hits Doc Ock with her umbrella.
Awesome Scene #5: The building on fire scene and the awe reaction of the little girl saving Peter.
Not-So-Awesome Scene: none