- Published on Saturday, 14 July 2012 11:55
- Written by Martin D Goodkin
All I could think of while watching “The Amazing Spider-Man” was apples and oranges, Superman and Lois Lane flying in air and King Kong but that was for about an hour and a half of the two hour and fifteen minute movie. The other hour was spent enjoying a sweet high school love story involving Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield) and Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) while seeing the former as a nerd growing up to be a man. The thing is you can’t have a comic book superhero without a lot of special effects and that takes us on one too many flying scenes, car crashes, shooting the villain (Rhys Ifans) only to have him--surprise!--get mad.
There are many warm scenes between Peter and Gwen, along with Peter interacting with his Aunt May (Sally Field) and Uncle Ben (Martin Sheen) not to forget a young Peter (Max Charles) losing his parents (Campbell Scott and Embeth Davidtz) without knowing why. There is a family dinner scene where Peter meets Gwen’s father Captain Stacy (Denis Leary) who is the police chief, her mother and her siblings, that goes from a Norman Rockwell scene to a misunderstanding between the father and Peter. There is also teenage bullying by Flash (Chris Zylka) with Peter getting his revenge when he becomes Spider-Man.
It is when he gets bitten by a spider and becomes Spider-Man that you not only clap but remember that you have seen this before and you wait for the special effects to kick in and they do just as you know the villain will and he does. No longer do we have Peter gliding all over in his skateboard and off we go as Spider-Man has a great scene with special effects, and good acting, from both actors in a rescue from a car over water.
Without comparing past actors in the various roles it is easy to say that Andrew Garfield has to be the skinniest Spider-Man ever and certainly not to be forgotten puppy eyes. Though Spiderman and Gwen don’t have that upside down kiss moment, which will always be remembered from the first movie, Garfield and Stone do share chemistry adding to their story. All the actors, directed by Marc Webb, in a screenplay by James Vanderbilt, Alvin Sargent and Steve Kloves, bring something to the film but, unfortunately the villain, the Lizard Man, was a poor choice, not the actor but the role. At the end of the credits it looks like he might be back for the sequel but, hopefully, not.
“The Amazing Spider-Man” will hold your interest whether you go for the comic hero aspect, the special effects, the love story and/or the background story and if one of the elements doesn’t interest you they will very shortly get to one that does.