Sony makes a movie, cause they can
Here comes another superhero movie.
I’ll be honest, the idea of Spider-Man has never appealed to me; the idea of a guy running around shooting webs from his hands kinda grossed me out. I avoided the first trilogy that came out because of a lack of interest on my part, and also my indifference toward Tobey Maguire. (I’ve since seen all three and still stand pretty neutral on the films.)
When they announced they were rebooting the series a few years ago I rolled my eyes, which is my typical response when I hear a studio is remaking a film series that concluded less than five years earlier.
It would have been easy for me to ignore this set too except for one thing … Emma Stone! I loves her and will happily hand over my money for a ticket to any movie she is in. (On a totally unrelated side note: If it was announced that Emma Stone, Jennifer Lawrence, and Anna Kendrick were making a movie together I might die from excitement before the project even started filming.)
I saw “The Amazing Spider-Man” (at a midnight showing) and it was an incredibly decent movie. Andrew Garfield was good. Funny jokes. Great chemistry between leads. Villain with proper motivations. Nice mesh of heartfelt story and actiony bits. It all worked and I left the theater moderately surprised, in a good way.
Now, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” is out. I’m only vaguely interested, but again, Emma Stone, so I’m obligated to go and see it. Right? Right.
Overall, I had a fun time with this film and it met my expectations. It didn’t exceed them, but it didn’t fall short either. So that’s something I guess.
There was A LOT of things going on in this movie and where some elements needed a little more attention they got cut short. They tried to weave an intricate web of storylines (SPIDER-PUN) but not everything meshed and it all jumbled to me. It’s like I was watching two different movies.
There was bad guys and action and relationship drama and family secrets and cover-ups and super villain creation and deaths and set-up for the next movie and angst and sarcasm and ghosts and like I said … A LOT was going on in this movie.
The parts that worked, worked really well. There was just unnecessary bits that were … well … unnecessary. Jamie Foxx’s Electro could have easily been eliminated from the movie and it wouldn’t have made any difference.
The character development and more dramatic storylines are what worked best. The scenes between Peter and Aunt May (Sally Field) and Peter and Gwen were great. Also, Peter learning the truth about his parents and why they abandoned him were fantastic. I wanted more of that stuff.
You also had Peter reconnecting with his childhood friend Harry Osborn and Harry’s transformation into Green Goblin which was interesting and compelling. Again, I wanted more of that! (On a related side note: Green Goblin’s costume and makeup was sufficiently creepy and awesome!)
But we didn’t get more because we had to show Electro hurting people with electricity cause science. Or we had to see some random big-wig at Oscorp (I don’t his name) trying to cover-up the companies “Special Projects” and get rid of Harry because he hates him for some reason? Or weird doctor that’s not Hank Azaria but looks like Hank Azaria experimenting on Electro cause again, science.
I also have some minor plot questions that aren’t huge but again begs the question, “Why did they do that?” Like Aunt May’s big secret that she’s taking nursing classes and doesn’t want Peter to know cause he’ll worry. Only she tells him and he has no reaction whatsoever to it.
Or during the blackout and we keep going to an airport control tower. Why? We don’t know anyone in the tower or on the plane. Why not go somewhere else where electricity is important and lives are at stake? Like maybe a hospital … where another character is a student nurse?
“Amazing Spider-Man 2” follows the standard super hero formula for the most part. Hero … bad guys … love interest mixed with sad backstory … action action BIG ACTION … resolution. But when you’re completing with Marvel studios the standard formula just doesn’t cut it anymore. The action has to serve the story, not just be tacked on cause you’re a comic book film and need an excuse for fighting.
With a bit more editing I think all the elements were there for a decent movie. It’s just buried under pointless action and characters. And with a runtime of 2 hours and 22 minutes (yes #numbernerds, “Amazing Spider-Man 2 has a runtime of 2:22) there was definitely room to cut. During the last half hour there was at least 3 times I thought “ok, this is the ending,” but it kept going.
The true and final ending did hit me right in the feels though so I have to give it credit for that.
The parts the movie did well (dramatic storyline, character interaction, sarcastic retorts) it did really well. It was just hard to find those parts under so much other crap. That’s why I’m giving it a completely unemotional “meh,” because I know that it could have been so much worse.
(On a somewhat related side note: Sony, please please PLEASE think of the fans and let Marvel have Spidey. Can you imagine Peter Parker working side by side with Bruce Banner and Tony Stark on the big screen in the MCU? It would be magical. #ScienceBros)