Sony Studios took a big gamble in jumpstarting the “Spider-Man” franchise after Sam Raimi’s first “Spider-Man” film, which was only 10 years ago, but it paid off in introducing Andrew Garfield as the new Peter Parker/Spider-Man and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy.
Perhaps one of the reason for the quick turnaround was to make amends for “Spider-Man 3.”
The sequel to the “Amazing Spider-Man 2” finds commonality with Mr. Raimi’s “Spider-Man 2” film.
Peter finds himself wanting to be a normal teenager, but knows that with his extraordinary gift he must deal with the difficulty of balancing a normal life with a life that he’s been given.
He finds himself with the love of his life Gwen Stacy right after high school graduation.
The chemistry between Mr. Garfield and Ms. Stone is the franchise’s strongest element of the film. They are a believable couple - actors of the right age and look- and helping each other through those important life decisions.
It also allows him to a life in which his prime objective isn't just fighting crime as a masked vigilante but merely being a youth in love.
Mr. Garfield’s Spider-Man comes off as cheeky with his taunts and by placing him in comedic situations while in pursuit off Russian criminal Aleksei Sytsevich
(Paul Giamatti). Aleksei's actions are explained, but merely setups a reason to see the webslinger in action
Seeing him swing from building to building throughout the city from his point of view is another advancement in the franchise as the audience feels that more closer to him as he soars through the sky narrowing tight confines and spaces.
Ms. Stone isn't stuck in a typical girlfriend role, being merely the eye candy and love interest, but is able to serve as an a non-extraordinary being proving that abilities does not equate greatness.
The film allows the two to have fun in that she isn't burden in wondering who is the masked hero, but allow her to prove her resilience and some light moments when they are out in the field.
But with their relationship, Peter know that it's serve as a vulnerability as well with the promise that he made in the first "The Amazing Spider-Man" film.
New to the series is Dane DeHaan as Harry Osborn, Peter's best friend, returning from boarding school. When they are re-united, the two actors for a moment make the audience forget that they are miniature adults but teenagers through their interactions.
Both the character of Peter and Harry are in a position in which they must continue their father’s work. Peter still wonders of the night his parents, Richard (Campbell Scott) and Mary (Embeth Davidtz), dropped him at his Aunt May’s (Sally Field) house never to return.
Peter’s parents get a bigger back story shown in the beginning of the film through flashback that accounts for their disappearance that will play an important factor in the "Amazing Spider-Man" franchise.
Ms. Field gives the supporting role of the surrogate mother and father with such conviction and endearment of watching this orphaned boy live his life without his parents and all that she goes through in her life.
Harry finds himself isolated as he engrains himself into the operations of Oscrop under the watchful eyes of Menken (Colm Feore), who wants to take over the family business..
Outside of Peter, it seems as if his only confidant is his assistance Felicia (Felicity Jones). But he finds himself consorting with Max/Electro (Jamie Foxx) who becomes the latest casualty of work-placed related incidents taking place at Oscorp. With all these great minds under one roof, Oscorp might just be hazardous to its employees.
His accident renders him blue as Dr. Manhattan from the “Watchman” but fully clothed. His powers includes the controlling and manipulation of electricity.
Mr. Foxx plays his character as someone who feels unappreciated while yearning for some human interaction who becomes smitten with Spider-Man after his encounter with him.
As the villain, things don't start off well with an awkward introduction as the anger he kept within manifests itself onto the public. The other villain, Aleksei, also comes off as one-dimensional, as the film pauses in midst leading up to the next film.
The fight sequences and showdowns don’t amount to much as it proves that Peter will have to make decision not only for himself but those that he cares for as he realizes that his actions impact not only him but others.
Hopefully the new franchise does not fall into the pitfall that caused its predecessor its downfall in attempting to do to much to quickly leading up to the next installment in the franchise.
Classification: Redbox Blu-Ray Release
Movie Grade: 3 out of 5 stars
The jumpstart to the “Spiderman” franchise finds itself sharing common themes with its predecessor with Peter dealing with the turmoil between his normal life and superhero life while uncovering the mysteries of the Parker family while continuing the family’s legacy.
The film’s strongest elements isn’t the superhero world in which Peter must fight these villains in special-laden effects that don’t amount but the dynamics of his everyday life with his relationship with Gwen Stacy.
Blu-Ray Grade: .5 out of 5 stars:
Only features trailers for other films.
Rating: PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action/violence.
Timing: 2 Hours, 22 Minutes
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Science Fiction,
- Director: Marc Webb
- Screenplay & Story: Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Ocri and Jeff Pinker
Story: James Vanderbilt
Comic: Stan Lee & Steve Ditko