Audiences were mesmerized when the iconic superhero swung to the big screen in "The Amazing Spider-Man," a 2012 film starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone. The reboot of the popular franchise received largely positive reviews and was a massive box office hit. On May 2, 2014, "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" hits theaters, and wary audiences have been pleasantly surprised by the revamped action, story and characters that this sequel brought to life. The following five elements have made this Spider-Man flick a stand-out film that is sure to be treasured by fans for many years to come.
The Chemistry Between Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone
Poor chemistry between the lead protagonists can make a film fall flat on its face. In "The Amazing Spider-Man 2," viewers can expect just the opposite as the palpable chemistry between Peter Parker and Gwen make for some incredible scenes. Garfield and Stone, who were dating at the time of shooting, brought their passion and emotional intimacy into their characters, making their on-screen chemistry light up. In the film, the two characters have an on-and-off relationship, adding a layer of complexity to their romance.
A Boost of Comic Book Action
Due to complaints that "The Amazing Spider-Man" was too dark and realistic, director Marc Webb decided to pump up the comic book attributes of the sequel, resulting in a colorful, cartoonish quality that works surprisingly well for the film. From Spider-Man's fights and costume to his movement and overall demeanor, nearly everything in the new Spidey film is closer to the hero's comic book origins. Additionally, the fast-paced, overblown action sequences with Electro and Green Goblin are just what superhero fans are craving.
A Complex, Well-built Web of a Plot
In this film, director Mark Webber takes on the tricky task of weaving a complex plot involving several villains and a few subplots. Many fans were anticipating the kind of overstuffed fiasco that characterized Sam Raimi's "Spider-Man 3," but viewers have been surprised by the interesting and complex nature of the plot. Peter Parker is facing the difficulties of balancing his personal life and his career as a web-slinging superhero, and his relationship with Gwen is consistently complicated. This film does, at times, border on becoming overstuffed, but in the end every character and subplot culminates into a satisfying finale.
The Introduction of Harry Osborn
Audiences may be hesitant about the introduction of this familiar character, particularly because he played such a large role in the earlier "Spider-Man" when he was portrayed by James Franco. However, Dane DeHaan's Harry is easily one of the best aspects of the film, adding an interesting twist to Peter Parker's life as Spider-Man while drawing viewers into his own story as he slowly becomes the iconic Green Goblin. DeHaan's youthful look, great acting and obvious charm make him the perfect actor for this role, and viewers are not disappointed by his performance.
"The Amazing Spider-Man 2" dishes out enough CGI wonders to draw any viewer into the universe of this beloved superhero. From the outstanding fight scenes to the more subtle effects, such as the glow of Electro's skin that seems to come from within, this film never misses a beat when it comes to visuals. The scenes of Spider-Man swinging through New York City are satisfying as each shadow and movement creates the perfect sense of realism. This film is also the first Spider-Man adventure to be shot entirely in New York, and the shots of the urban cityscape are breathtaking.
"The Amazing Spider-Man 2" has received mostly mixed to positive reviews from audiences and critics alike, and it promises to be another big box office success. Webb has reported that "The Amazing Spider-Man" films series will continue with two more sequels. Andrew Garfield has already signed on for "The Amazing Spider-Man 3," and Emma Stone has signed on for both sequels.