Spider-Man(Andrew Garfield) returns to the big screen with a new cast,new director (Marc Webb) and a new take on Spider-Man’s origin. Spidey’s origin follows Peter Parker’s quest to discover what really happened to his parents. His journey takes him to Oscorp after learning that Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans) was a colleague of his father’s. Oscorp’s secrets change Peter’s life and put him on a collision course with The Lizard (Rhys Ifans).
As many of you know I viewed this retelling as a disaster in the making and while those feelings have waned quite a bit after viewing the film I still felt certain parts were executed poorly. I think that movie audiences are at a point with a character like Spider-Man where there is no need to retell the origin. While Marc Webb did not spend insane amounts of time on the origin it still had to be retold. The action sequences and web swinging were well done and looked amazing in IMAX. But for all that style on display certain elements just really annoyed the hell out of me. Let’s go down the list which be advised will contain spoilers. If you have not seen the film please skip past the list below. Spoiler Alert!
Costume inspiration Being inspired to wear a mask had more meaning when wrestling Bonesaw McGraw (See Sam Raimi Spider-Man) than falling through a window and looking at a luchador poster
Web fluid- So a geeky high school prodigy decides to “borrow” a bio web formula from Oscorp and use it throughout the city without anyone noticing. Did he buy the formula in the gift shop after leaving Connor’s office?
Beat up a group of people on the train with your spider powers and no one can give a description to the cops.
Arriving home bloody every night either means you’re in Fight Club or bad guys are beating you up. If Aunt May didn’t figure out Peter was Spider-Man by the time the movie ended maybe she has the selective vision people have in DC where they can’t see that Clark Kent without glasses is Superman
Random lizards just hanging out in the sewers? Not sure where they got that idea but I seriously doubt that Lizards are just going to hang out in the sewers.
By the time the credits were done rolling I asked myself if anyone did NOT know who Spider-Man was. I am cool with certain characters knowing his secret identity but given the blatant disregard for the concept of anonymity or alter ego they should have just had Spidey run around with no mask to make things easier . I felt that Andrew Garfield did a solid job as the wise cracking Spider-Man we all know and love but I did feel his portrayal of Peter Parker was less nerdy and more hip than we’ve come to expect. He was more Big Bang Theory geeky than pocket protector geeky if that makes sense. Overall the cast played their roles well and did not hinder the film with crappy performances. On the effects front Amazing Spider-Man did a tremendous job with the webbing and also with the goomba looking Lizard. The Lizard did at one point have the lab coat so rest easy hardcore fan boys. The Amazing Spider-Man was not just a retelling of a story we all know but an homage to New York City which was showcased wonderfully throughout the film . I think this retelling carved out its own niche much like the Nolan Batman films have but it comes down to creating engaging new stories that will make the audience want to reinvest time into a character they have already seen on the big screen.
The Amazing Spider-Man did a serviceable job retelling the origin story and adding some new elements to the film universe that I am certain we will see in Marvel books going forward. Releasing so close to the Dark Knight Rises will certainly impact the grosses but the bigger problem is that their will be no word of mouth telling people that they should see it. This is where I come in and say that you should definitely see it . Look for the Stan Lee cameo and remember to stay after the credits.