Saturday, July 7, 2012

Since I Asked (The Amazing Spider-Man)

Others will likely pontificate and elucidate in a manner far more satisfactory than what I can aspire to in my humble blog, but since I posted a bit on the subject previously, I'll go ahead and toss my two spider tracers into the hat as far as my thoughts on the Amazing Spider-Man.

Worth seeing.  Not bad.  Better than Green Lantern, but nowhere near Avengers, and not even quite up to the "second tier" Marvel Studios movies  (as I see them, Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, and Thor, none of which are bad, but not the top Marvel movies either).

Pete is too motivated by anger in this one.  Sure, Pete gets angry, but Pete is motivated by guilt and it's slightly more attractive twin sister responsibility.

Pete is too distant from Aunt May in this one, and Aunt May isn't the doting surrogate parent she normally is.  It's not that she doesn't care, but she's very distracted and confused, and her concern and adoration of Peter doesn't come through first and foremost.

Ironically, in the other Spider-Man movies, I always felt that they gave all of the bad guys a little too much slack when it comes to their villainous tendencies.  Doc Ock was a victim.  Sandman wasn't such a bad guy.  Heck, even Norman seemed to be a "not nice" guy that was driven to being a villain by the goblin mist and his greedy, uncaring board of directors.  Venom is probably the least sympathetic villain of the original trilogy, but he also gets the least screen time and Raimi was pretty clear in stating that he hated the character and didn't want to use him.

That having been said, I think it's strange that poor Doc Connors is portrayed as being borderline sinister, corrupted, and compromised before he ever becomes the Lizard, even though his comic book counterparts is one of the most sympathetic villains in Spider-Man's rogues gallery.

While I was initially concerned about playing up Pete's parents in the movie, I think if the above things had been dialed in a bit better, this alternate angle wouldn't be that much of a problem.  As it is, it's one too many loose ends in a movie that really seems to have been built to set up future movies.

On the plus side, Dennis Leary makes for a good Captain Stacy, and Emma Stone knocked it out of the part as Gwen Stacy.  I also like that Norman, while remaining in the shadows, is set up to be pretty villainous in his own right, even before any goblins enter the mix.

This may serve to be a solid foundation for future movies, but I wish it had been a bit more complete in it's own right, and that Pete had been just a wee bit more likable.  As it is, I feel like I'm only friends with him because of his girlfriend.

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