Movie Review: The Amazing Spiderman 2

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It’s got stiff competition, not only from the latest Captain America film, but the previous Spidey worked so well.. And this one just doesn’t keep up. To many things feel forced and too much is just the same ol’ same ol’.

It’s like hearing about this new ice cream flavor, but when you finally get to taste it, it tastes kind of bland and uninspiring, if ice cream can be inspiring.

— SPOILER ALERT —

The movie opens with some Spidey action, and from the get-go, you are realizing there are twenty different ways where Spidey can end this quickly… It just isn’t that difficult. There is a literal whole in the plot that he could jump through and clobber the bad guys, but he doesn’t, and the sequence goes on and on and on, because… Well… I guess it needs to.

When the action sequence finally ends, Qwen and Peter get to be cute together, and there is almost some “there” there, something to say hey, this movie is going to be something a little different… But no. Pete and Gwen continue to do the whole “I love you but you’re in danger so we have to break up” thing, which seemed resolved at the end of the first film.

Electro is one of the main villains, and the set-up is so lame and contrived. In the previous Spider Man series, the villain in the second movie, Doc Oc, was a stand out because there was still some humanity behind him and he had dept. Electro, and the human that precedes the villain are less than one dimensional. The creation of the current villain (electrical pun intended) is the result of an a silly accident, made really silly when you consider the flack that Oscorp got for the whole Lizard fiasco, which in this movie you are reminded over and over again nearly destroyed the company. when the villains powers emerge, you almost… Almost… Have something interesting with some potential (another electrical theory pun… I’m soooo clever). You almost have some sympathy for him because at first he has no idea what’s happened to him. Then, like the flip of a switch, he just becomes evil.

Harry Osborn makes his first appearance for this rebooted Spiderman. For a character that should be important in Peter Parker life, he’s just kind of thrown in and some back story dialog is supposed to make the connection of these two friends work. It doesn’t. Both the story arch concerning Harry O, and the casting of the actor are botched, as neither connects at all. Dane DeHaan may be a good actor, but he just doesn’t work here… And he has the same problem that Electro does, where he’s good, and then, all of a sudden, he’s bad, and that’s long before he transforms into yet another super power villain. But you don’t care because DeHaan, unlike James Franco’s Harry Osborn in the previous Spiderman series, never connects enough to make you care about him.

And then there is Gwen Stacy. What worked so well in the first movie is TOTALLY botched here. In the first movie, Qwen shows that shes no shrieking violet, and her smarts really do come in handy during the battles with Dr. Connors / Mr Lizard. She doesn’t have to give some grand lecture to be involved. In this movie, that is turned completely on its head. At one point, Gwen is literally arm-waiving, stating¬† that she alone is vital to help save the city because Electro has just shut down a very complicated Oscorp designed super-duper-glowey modern energy facility that feeds electricity to the whole city, and since she works at Oscorp, she of course knows that tech intimately even though she was much more involved in the genetics and applied sciences department in the first movie, and despite the super-powers of her on-again /off-again boyfriend, she is the ONLY ONE smart enough with enough knowledge about this very high-tech glowey power plant to be able to fix what Electro has broken and shut down. Then, when she is in position, she…..

Wait for it…..

Presses a RESET BUTTON!!!!!!!!!!

Really????????????????????????????????????????

YES!!!!!!

All that drama and speechifying for THAT?

Where is the science and complex stuff that only she was qualified to deal with????

And worse! The Reset button? For some absolutely strange reason that I can’t comprehend, It’s got a cover on it…. That is secured with a pad lock! Yes. The reset button is under lock and key.

Why do you have a reset button under lock and key? That’s just silly!

And, after all the damage done to the power plant in the ensuing battle between Spiderman and Electro, and there is a LOT of it,  the power plant fires right back up as if there is no damage at all.

After Electro is discharged… Or overcharged in this case… OK…. That’s the stock solution in EVERY case when dealing with an electric baddie.. The Green Goblin make his one appearance. Their battle takes place in a clock tower, and every ridiculous thing that you’ve ever seen happen between a superhero and his villain when they fight in a clock tower happens here. You can set your watch to it. The web slinging rescue of Gwen, done in slow-mo (which happens WAY TOO MUCH in this film, along with the parent film company’s product placement) is just… Bad. Why is it that the multitude of huge falling gears within a disintegrating clock tower miraculously somehow never hit anyone inside the tower?

A few sad things happen in this movie that are meant to tear at our heartstrings. But because of the lame script, you really don’t care much. “Capitan America, Winter Soldier” work so well because we the audience connected with the characters, even a few of the bad ones – also something that the “Marvel, Agents of SHIELD” TV show is doing quite well. All the web-slinging in the world can’t save this clunker of a superhero film.