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Thoughts on ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’

Posted 6 years ago by Movies

The Amazing Spider-Man

Modern superhero movies are officially old enough to be rebooted now. That thought makes me feel old. I was a sophomore in High School when the first Spider-Man movie came out, and I loved it. I was an awkward geek, like Peter Parker but minus the academic abilities, and even though I thought Tobey Maguire looked way older than me, I connected with him. Looking back through the lens of more recent superhero movies though, Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man films seem a little silly. Spider-Man 2 is still a great film, and I never saw the third movie, but when I heard that Sony was planning to reboot the franchise, I understood. I was ready for a new take on Spider-Man.

And boy is it dividing fans. I saw it on opening day at my local IMAX theater, and I’ve been thinking about it a lot, trying to figure out what I thought. Rather than writing an in-depth review, I thought I would just round up my likes and dislikes and see if we could get a discussion going.

I liked The Amazing Spider-Man, a lot more than I thought I would. It was a really cool take on Spider-Man and it left me wanting sequels, which is a good thing. It’s no Avengers, but then again I wasn’t expecting it to be.

Likes

The Cast
I loved the cast in The Amazing Spider-Man. Andrew Garfield was a great Peter Parker. He seemed super smart but goofy, and had really good chemistry with the rest of the cast. Emma Stone was perfect as Gwen Stacy. Rhys Ifans was surprisingly cool as Dr. Conners. I usually don’t care for Denis Leary, but I even liked him as Captain Stacy.

The Stunts
The first Spider-Man movie came out in the time period where Hollywood was just starting to use CGI to replace actors for stunts, and the results often looked like a Playstation game. The Quidditch scene in the first Harry Potter movie also comes to mind. I’m glad there has been a lot of progress in the effects industry since then, because I never felt like I recognized a bad CGI human anywhere in TASM. They really sold Spider-Man’s agility and web-slinging.

The Story
The trailers for TASM were starting to worry me. It seemed like they were tampering with the origin story a lot, and I didn’t know how that was going to play out. Surprisingly, a lot of that stuff didn’t make the final cut. SlashFilm has a great piece pinpointing exactly what was left out and speculating about why it was. As I watched the movie I found that I really liked the story, and thought it was a really fun reboot of the character. I liked that Normal Osborne wasn’t in the movie at all. I don’t even think he needs to be in the second film. Save him for the end of the first trilogy, kill of Gwen Stacey, and you’ve got a whole new trilogy set up.

The Music
I went into TASM without even knowing who wrote the score, and I loved it. James Horner knocked it out of the park. It was different than your average superhero movie score, and seemed a bit more personal and even experimental at times. I liked it enough that I actually picked up the soundtrack, which I haven’t done in a while for a film.

Dislikes

The Lizard Special Effects
I liked The Lizard/Dr. Conners as a character and as a villain. I thought it was very cool. Peter Parker contributes to the creation of the villain, and feels responsible for taking him down. He was a threat. But, I just didn’t get into the look of the Lizard. I don’t think it was just because they ditched the snout either. He looked too generic, and his Joker-smile was kind of weird. That being said, I liked The Lizard much better than the Green Goblin in the first Spider-Man movie. He just looked like a Power Rangers villain.

The Mid-Credits Scene
I get that Sony is trying to emulate Marvel’s approach to superhero movies now, but they get a D for effort with the weird, super short, and confusing mid-credits scene. It didn’t seem to tease anything in particular, which is kind of the point in those kind of scenes. I thought we’d get a tease at a new villain or something. Oh well.

I’m sure there was more I didn’t like, but I can’t really think of it off the top of my head. Peter Parker webbing Gwen Stacy and pulling her towards him for a kiss was kind of lame. It made my wife roll her eyes.

Overall I thought it was a really cool movie and I look forward to seeing the new franchise play out. There have been rumors that if it is a success Sony and Disney might actually agree to let Spider-Man cameo in the next Avengers movie, which would be amazing so for that reason alone I hope it kicks ass at the box office.

What about you though, did you see The Amazing Spider-Man? What did you think?

  • Somehow I completely forgot to mention the 3D. I actually really enjoyed the 3D in this movie. It gave the cinematography a very cool depth, and it only seemed like a gimmick in that last shot, where the web comes at you in super slow motion. But honestly, that was kind of cool too.