A Touchy, Feely Amazing Spider-Man 2 Movie Review…
A Touchy, Feely Amazing Spider-Man 2 Movie Review…
I am not being macho in describing the New Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie as being touchy/feely because it is driven by emotions… or perhaps, I should rightly say that Andrew Garfield, who for the second time, is playing the Web-Slinger, brings the emotional wallop to the role - Mr. Garfield has physically filled out and so too is his portrayal of Spider-Man. In addition, the childlike joy is visible and visceral when we see Spider-Man going from skyscraper to skyscraper, meandering, and whooping it up like every boy who read the Spider-Man comic book. Many of the scenes of the movie that mostly take place around Manhattan were most special to me because the building I currently work in was part of the movie’s backdrop and it made me as though I was there in the movie, enjoying the concrete-jungle scenic beauties of 42nd Street.
I said that emotions drive The New Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie and when seeing it… one will be tempted to quote Shakespeare when he said, “…If you prick us… do we not bleed….” And so it is that Peter Parker, among the players in the movie, bled his emotions. Peter Parker is haunted by a very special promise he made to Gwen Stacey's Mary father and he fears that, notwithstanding his powers, that he may not be able to keep his promise, especially in light of his dangerous job/hobby of protecting the Big Apple and its citizens from baddies. Peter is also emotionally overwrought, though most time he may not show it, by the loss or seemingly abandonment of his parents... that is why the briefcase, which represents the only keepsake that he has of his father, is to Peter ‘the curiosity’ that killed many a cat… and why he is obsessing over the briefcase.
Even the bad guys in The New Spider-Man movie are fraught with emotions that trigger their respective antagonistic behaviors. One of the bad guys is Jamie Foxx, who plays Electro, and because of the typical way we treat the so called ‘nerds,’ we empathized when he is empowered with electricity, which seems to balance out the challenges Foxx’s nerdy character faced. Speaking of Mr. Foxx, it seems that the director should have reigned him in when was he was portraying the ‘nerdy’ character before he became Electro… Foxx’s portrayal of a nerd to me came off like one of his skits he had done so many times on his In-Living-Color show… only here, there was no sympathy - at least on my part - for the character to support his Alter Ego’s lashing out… I would have preferred Colm Feore, who is also in The New Spider-Man Amazing movie, and of the Chronicles of Riddick’s fame, assuming that role.
Another bad guy is Peter Parker childhood friend, Harry Osborn, turned enemy who is beyond damaged because of a neglectful father… one could understand Harry’s anger toward Peter Parker because the former is literally craving for a 'life source' that only Spiderman can provide - but the fly in the ointment is that the supposed cure might be worse than the disease… and like a parent whose child is terminal… Harry is driven by the survival instinct.
Let us talk about Emma Stone who is brilliant in this movie and whose chemistry with Mr. Garfield is palpable and off the charts… incidentally, apparently, there is something to being lovers off screen because even though there is no nudity in the New Amazing Spider-Man’s movie… when both stars are connected on screen, one feels like shouting, get a room! Miss Stone’s character is what drives Peter Parker/Spider-Man and it is the main impetus for Peter Parker’s angst… which is knowing that someday, that one or more of Spiderman’s nemeses will find out about his genuine love for Miss Stone… placing her in grave danger. Miss stone is not only eye candy and fluff… she contributes to who Peter Parker/Spider-Man is and even contribute needed Intelligence as to how to neutralize one of Spider-Man’s enemies.
The New Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie is far from being perfect because I did not buy into the reason why Jamie Foxx, in particular, has hatred for Spiderman… and the movie is lacking that delicate balance between being humorous and being taken serious - I dare say that there are parts of the movie that came off as too ‘campy;’ however, The New Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie also has its realistic moments too highlighting the fact that even Super-Heroes, like regular folks, cannot fulfill all their promises made to loved-ones, not even when said Super-Heroes are endowed with supernatural powers
The excellent parts of this movie though reflect America when its proverbial back is against the wall like during World War 2, the natural weather disasters, and the tragedy of 911. There is one salient, saving, scene where a little boy is standing in proxy for a emotionally crippled Spider-Man… and New York's citizens who are bereft of its webbed hero... and when one sees that scene… he or she will recall that real life pivotal scene… where a lone Chinese Democratic dissenter in Tiananmen Square faced down a tank.