I’m blogging some of the film reviews I’ve done on Facebook:
Did we really need a reboot of the Spider-Man films after Sam Raimi’s great run? Probably not. “Spider-Man 2” (2004) was one of the greatest comic book movies of all time, and even the problematic “Spider-Man 3” (2007) wasn’t nearly as bad as its many detractors said. Besides, superhero stories are serial by nature, there’s no need to stick to a trilogy. Why not just let Raimi, Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst continue to do their thing? (I never realized how much I liked Dunst as Mary Jane until she was absent.)
Because of the Christopher Nolan “Batman” films, that’s why. “The Amazing Spider-Man” (2012) is an obvious (and unnecessary) attempt by Columbia Pictures to give Marvel Comics’ flagship character the Nolan treatment. IMDB.com even states that the filmmakers credit “Batman Begins” (2005) as an influence.
With all of that said, though, “The Amazing Spider-Man” is actually a pretty good movie – I’d give it an 8 out of 10. It doesn’t match the charm, humor and sense of fun that Raimi and co, brought us; Peter Parker and Aunt May here and not as likable or relatable. (But Martin Sheen is awesome as ever as Uncle Ben.)
But Andrew Garfield is funny and talented, and he does a great job. This movie actually IS truer to the comics that I remember. Garfield’s great line delivery finally gives us the wise-cracking Peter Parker Maguire couldn’t pull off. And the Spider-Man I remember from my school days wasn’t quite the vulnerable wallflower that we’ve seen in the Raimi films – especially when thrown into the mix with characters like Wolverine or The Punisher.
This is definitely an edgier, grittier Spider-Man story. He gets hurt. He bleeds. The script is slick, smart, understated and obviously aimed at a more adult audience. There’s good sci-fi villain who is rendered wonderfully by CGI; he makes the Green Goblin seem silly by comparison. And the action sequences were damned good – we get some great, wicked-cool fight choreography that seems true to the character and even reminded me a little of great comic book fight movies like “Blade” (1998).
This reboot does suffer a bit from the superfluous and laborious re-telling of Spider-Man’s origin story. How many people are unaware that Peter Parker was bitten by a radioactive and/or genetically modified spider? How much more exciting would it be to see Spidey fight, oh, say, Carnage?
All in all, this was a decent movie. To enjoy it, you just sort of have to take it on its own terms instead of comparing it to Raimi’s flicks.