Friday, 29 June 2012
The Amazing Spider-Man - Movie Review
Peter Parker finds a clue that might help him understand why his parents disappeared when he was young. His path puts him on a collision course with Dr. Curt Connors, his father's former partner.
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Dennis Leary, Martin Sheen, Sally Field
Director: Marc Webb ((500) Days of Summer)
I was a bit skeptical when a reboot was announced so close to the original trilogy. I'm a big fan of the first two Spider-Man movies, starring Toby Maguire (let's face it, the third one was shit) and I wasn't sure a reboot would do it justice. However, much like Christopher Nolan has turned Batman into something else from Tim Burton's original vision, director Marc Webb has done the same thing with Sam Raimi's Spider-Man.
There are loads of iconic Spider-Man stances and poses that are lifted right out of the comics, more so I felt than the original trilogy. I also liked the little touches of detail, such as the camera Parker uses is that same old skool type SLR from the comics.
A number of scenes feature great camera work, some are sure to be CGI cameras, but they really make you feel like you are part of the action. Like the scenes when Parker is escaping from the cops under the bridge, the effect of Spider-Man swinging around by his web, it just gives it a certain weight I didnt feel in the previous films. Early trailers also hinted at a lot of first person camera angles, featuring Spidey running along rooftops, climbing along walls and leaping buildings. The scenes are used in the final film but nowhere near as much as the trailers. Pretty sure this was due to them not being well received. I saw the film in 3D, and aside from a few falling objects and webs shot at the screen, it's not that much to write home about.
The CGI of the Lizard left a lot to be desired for me, which explains why they didn't show it much in the trailers before release. He just doesn't look that good when it's on screen.
Garfield provides a more comedic and edgier Parker than Maguire. He also shows real, believable emotion at the death of his uncle. Sheen plays this role well and offers up sage advice a number of times throughout the film. I was disappointed by Ifans' performance, not at the Lizard, but as Dr. Curt Connors. He seemed to be putting on a voice for the character which just didn't work for me. Leary plays his archetypal classic role excellently. It's Emma Stone however who steals the show.
There are a lot of people talking about how The Amazing Spider-Man is the first super hero movie for girls. Yes it's true there is a fair amount of romance in the film, but that's expected where teenagers are concerned. It's the chemistry between Garfield and Stone that really stood out for me. It's really natural and believable, Stone brings her usual charm to the role, it felt almost like the two of them were ad libbing. I hope they find a way to bring her back in the inevitable sequel.
The cheesiest part of the whole film is where a number of crane drivers all rally together to help Spider-Man get across the city quickly to the final battle with the Lizard, as he's wounded and needs to cover a great distance. It felt very all-American and was unnecessary.
The final battle is heaped with a CGI as Spider-Man and the Lizard battle it out, but it doesn't detract from the spectacle of it all and would have been nigh on impossible to film with real actors to achieve such great results.
Be sure to stay after the end credits to see a short clip of additional footage.