The Amazing Spider-Man
Words by John Hewitt.
Spiderman played a big part in my childhood. I religiously watched the cartoons, I read the comics and I lamented my inability to climb up walls and swing through cities on a daily basis. When the first Spiderman film came out all the way back in 2002, I lapped it up and my love of the character skyrocketed. After sitting through the third film in paralysed horror, however, I believed that the franchise was over and best left untouched. So you can imagine my apprehension going into the rebooted Amazing Spiderman today.
Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) is a high school student, raised by his aunt and uncle after his parent disappeared, bullied by his peers and his eyes set upon classmate Gwen Stacey (Emma Stone). Having infiltrated the Oscorp building in the hopes of questioning Dr Curtis Connors (Rhys Ifans) about his knowledge of his father’s disappearance, Peter is bitten by one of the spider test subjects, developing super-strength, agility, wall climbing and his spider sense as a result.
When his Uncle Ben (Martin Sheen) is shot while looking for Peter after an argument, Peter decides to use his abilities to become the vigilante Spiderman to protect people and find his uncles killer. At the same time, Connors’ research into cross-species experiments leads to his transformation into a much greater threat as the ferocious Lizard.
It is safe to say that this film is certainly better than the original film trilogy. The acting is top notch all round, with Garfield and Stone in particular being very likable and believable characters, with Garfield’s Peter Parker being the wisecracking Spiderman that we have come to expect. The fight scenes are kept intense and the stunts are breathtaking. The humour is natural enough to not appear shoed in and can be very funny at times.
Despite this, the film suffers from a lot of story issues that actively detract from the experience. While the origin story at the start is strong enough to keep your attention, the second half descends into clichés and cheesy moments that make it difficult to sit through. These writing problems are certainly not helped by the odd plot-point which seems to happen simply because no better alternative sprang to mind. In addition, the CGI has a tendency to slip up at certain moments, a factor you definitely don’t want when your villain is mostly CGI.
A highly enjoyable film let down by problems in its story and its CGI. While the acting and humour is to its benefit, these are not enough to warrant the ‘Amazing’ in its title. Still worth going to see but personally, I’m going to look forward towards the Dark Knight Rises next week.
|Title:||The Amazing Spider-Man|
|Starring:||Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Martin Sheen, Sally Field|
|Running Time:||Little over 2 hours|