With the way the final film of the previous Spiderman trilogy definitely left a bad taste in the mouth of any fan of the previous two movies so I think it is safe to say that we all saw this reboot coming. Now if you are a comic book fan you are probably aware of the different storylines that filmmakers have to choose from so we are not getting spoon fed the same story as the previous trilogy. That is not to say it is a completely different story, at the core of the movie there are a lot of similar elements so do not expect a complete makeover of the story. However, as with and remake/reboot/re-visioning or whatever you want to call it the number one question is always “was it worth it?” So I am going to state that this review may be more of a comparison than an actual review. And I also have not read the comics so I cannot judge if take is closer to its respective comic.
Here is a short introduction to The Amazing Spider-Man: Photo-snapping, skateboard riding, high school student Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) finds in his aunt and uncles home a piece of luggage that he remembered belonging his father before his parents were killed when he was just a kid. In pursuing the meaning of its contents he gets a little closer to a beautiful co-ed, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone), who interns with Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans) at Oscorp. Exploring the premises Parker is bitten by a spider enhancing his mind and body to the point he takes on an alternate vigilante persona and develops a formula to re-grow limbs and mutates Dr. Connors into large vengeful reptile. Here is the trailer:
After watching this I have mixed feelings when comparing it to the previous franchise. I am going to start with the story. It has a fundamental base that is similar to the Sam Raimi film in 2002 and that is the relationship with his aunt and uncle, what inevitably happens to his Uncle Ben, and that it all comes back to the evil Oscorp. Then you also have the stereotypical characters that exist solely to remind you the cops discourage being a vigilante more than being a criminal.
The differences are pretty glaring, however. Marc Webb’s story does drag at times in the developing of Peter Parker area, I mean we watch him skateboard ten times better than Tony Hawk ever did and why did we need to him do his balancing act on the building with his two fingers. Raimi’s I just felt more easy to watch and not role my eyes to. I also like how instead of catching wrong criminal after wrong criminal to discover what he wants his suit to ultimate look like, I thought it was cool about how Parker duked it out with the Macho Man in the ring.
The rest of the differences lie in the characters. Tobey Maguire’s character was literally that nice, quiet guy next door type that was prim and proper even though he was tight on cash. Andrew Garfield’s Peter Parker is a much different breed of geek, he has messy hair, kind of plots around when he walks, and is a serious back talker. In my opinion, this Peter Parker was just unlikeable. Now I have heard that this is much closer to the comics but being that I did not read the comics I just found myself rooting for Maguire’s Parker more than Garfield’s. That said, though, I liked the way Marc Webb’s Spider-Man fought more than I did Raimi’s because this one really took advantage of his web slinging abilities especially when fighting and if you see the movie you know what I mean. Marc Webb’s villain Dr. Curt Connors/The Lizzard was by far the coolest villain I have seen in a Spider-Man movie but Doc Ock is right behind him. Not only was he visually well done and intimidating but it just nice to not have James Franco polluting the screen. Gwen Stacy was a much better love interest than Mary Jane, that may be attributable to Emma Stone but Gwen just seemed braver less of an annoying distraction or victim.
Overall, I did not find this an improvement rather just a different story. The Amazing Spider-Man only downfall to me is its version of Peter Parke, I just had a tough time finding something about his personality to like. But Denis Leary made up for it with his mayor of Tokyo line, just flat out hysterical. It is just a 7/10 for me however.