THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2: A ComicUI Review
Less than 2 years after the Sony rebooted the Spider-Man franchise with The Amazing Spider-Man, they’ve released a sequel that fails to capture the magic that the titular character has been known for. From drastic tonality changes from scene to scene, shallow villains, and a true lack of Spider-Man in the movie, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 left me feeling bored within the first 10 minutes and failed to bring any of the characters into relevance. In the words of Gwen Stacey, Spider-Man, “I break up with you.”
The strongest parts of the movie were when Peter Parker was searching for himself and his family’s legacy, and that can be attested to the believable acting between Andrew Garfield and Sally Fields. It also becomes troublesome as the movie isn’t called Peter Parker: The Amazing Spider-Man and without seeing the web-slinger on screen for a long stretch of the movie, it diminishes the times when he does appear. Emma Stone also brings some great chemistry to the screen, as I could entirely believe the Peter/Gwen relationship and their struggles post high-school, mores than the Peter/MJ troubles of the original trilogy.
My biggest worry before seeing the film would be the apparent villain bloat, with the Rhino, Electro, and Green Goblin seen in the trailers. However, I wouldn’t say that bloat affected their appearance, but their shallowness that made them hard to swallow. The Rhino is the absolute worst in the film, and only served as the bookends to the film. Despite his ability to transform into the character, Jamie Foxx as Max Dillon and Electro comes off as weird and hard to sympathize with across the film’s entirety. Lastly, I truly wanted Dane DeHaan as Harry Osborne to be successful on the film, but his unfounded arrogance and single tracked mindedness fell flat.
I cannot argue that Marc Webb has crafted one of the most visually appealing films in the franchise. From the terrifying creation introduction of the blue Electro, the Green Goblin’s grotesque transformation, and Spider-Man’s traversing the city, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 delivers a visual spectacle that we’ve never seen. The newest iteration of Spider-Man’s spider sense was under utilized, but definitely worth the price of admission.
And that part. You know, the one thats going to happen. It is handled with more care than any other part of the movie and that makes it one of the best parts of the film.
If you’re a Spider-Man fan, then you may find more to enjoy in the movie than I have, but the blatant flaws and lack of consistent pacing left me hungry for more substance and effectively removed any affection I had with the character. By the end of the film, I found myself not caring about the fate of the characters, nor if there was going to be the (inevitable) third entry in the series. Despite the stellar performances by Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Sally Fields, the underwhelming dialog and storyline ultimately negate all their good work. This relegates the film to eye candy instead of carrying the gravity needed. If you’re looking for something on par with this year’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier or even surpasses the original Amazing Spider-Man, you’ll be left disappointed.