Spider-man, is a veteran of the superhero movie genre. With 3 films under his
By delving deep into Peter Parker’s past, The Amazing Spider-man sets itself apart from Sam Raimi’s original trilogy. From the opening scene with Richard Parker to the closing scene with Gwen Stacy, this Spider-man movie strives to be different, and for the most part it succeeds. Andrew Garfield’s portrayal of high school age Peter Parker is much more real than Tobey Mcguire’s glassy eyed-aw shucks-naivety. Alot of that comes from Peter’s parents dying in the opening scenes. This creates a tone and emotion that is carried on through the rest of the movie. Like Bruce Wayne, Parker has to deal with death at an early age, and the film-makers did a fantastic job of making that matter in the character progression.
Garfield isn’t the only dynamite casting choice in The Amazing Spider-man. Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben, Sally Field as Aunt Mae, Denis Leary as Captain George Stacy, and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy all pull in fantastic performances, especially Stone. She carries herself with enough sexy to be believable as “the girl Peter has trouble talking to” and once the tables were turned she pulled that off as well. Most importantly she was not just another Kirsten Dunst. Rhys Ifans as Dr. Curt Conners worked but probably not as well as Mark Webb had hoped.
Going into the film I was wondering how they would get around such big characters like Normon Osbourne, Harry Osbourne, Mary Jane Watson and J. Jonah Jameson without their absence being too obvious. Normon is referred to very specifically throughout the film (probably setting up the sequel) so he’s not really missed, but Harry being gone seems weird. Peter Parker is portrayed as having no friends, none are shown or talked about, he’s a lonely high school nerd who likes to skateboard. Even nerds have buddies, and that’s the role Harry usually fills. I’m sure he’ll be there next time around, but that will only make his absence here more noticeable.
Seeing the origin story play out again on screen was strange, Raimi’s Spider-man was released only 10 years ago, so seeing the spider bite again and basically the same thing happening to Uncle Ben felt like wearing a pair of underwear that had worn out elastic. You know why the scene is there and you can’t go without it, but its uncomfortable and you just want to get past it. I’m sure had this film been released in a universe where the previous trilogy didn’t exist, the Uncle Ben scene would be just fine. Also the film’s decision to omit the “With great power comes great responsibility” line would have been acceptable had the script not danced around the idea so much. If you want to say it just say it. Don’t change the wording of the saying just for the sake of being different.
Spider-man’s discovery period where he tries out his powers and develops the web shooters was fun and much less vanilla than what was in the original Spider-man. Hearing Spider-man finally taunt his enemies like in the comics was fun too. The swing (pun intended) from dorky pre-spider bite Peter Parker to post-bite costumed crime fighter was much wider than before and the movie benefits from it. In fact, the story was one of the more engaging comic book stories on film, at least until the 3rd act.
Oh the 3rd act, there’s going to be some spoilers here so watch out. First off, Spidey gets shot in the leg, sure it adds to the tension and makes him over come adversity, but logistically how is he going to get medical attention and remain anonymous. This has been addressed before in stories like this and Peter Parker has alot of baggage he would have to dodge if he were to try and self medicate a gun-shot wound.
Secondly, I can’t be the only one bothered by the scene where all the crane operators in New York City (who just so happened to be located on every street between where Spider-man was and where he needed to be) line up their jibs so Spider-man can swing to the Oscorp Building. It was cheesy, unbelievable, and ultimately pointless. News flash crane operators, Spider-man’s webs stick to buildings too! The cranes weren’t even needed. I know that this represented that New York City’s citizens had Spidey’s back, but somewhere in the translation from page to screen something got lost.
Finally, your nephew is coming home nightly looking like he has been brutally beaten by drug cartel leaders. Aunt Mae, step up and do something. Find out where he goes at night, and get the police involved. Yeah that would break the story, but if you ask me, Mae allowing Peter to always look like an assault victim is evidence of an already some-what broken story.
Don’t get me wrong I loved The Amazing Spider-man, most of the movie is spot on and outside of the small (in the grand scheme of the movie) things I just mentioned most people will really like the new Spider-man. This of course is assuming you can get past the whole idea of the reboot in the first place. Stick around for the scene during the credits, it hints at the sequel while not really revealing anything.
Verdict: A new Spider-man movie? Why the eff, not?