When Andrew Garfield stepped into the Spidey suit a few years back, fans of the comic sighed a collective sigh of relief and wiped the memories of Tobey Maguire’s Spidey from their minds. This time around, some fans – myself included – got slightly concerned. With Rhino, Electro and Green Goblin cast, would it fall foul of Spiderman 3’s problem of too many villains? And would it stick to one of comic books greatest surprises? (Don’t worry, I’m not one for spoilers! I’m not going to ruin anything for those of you who haven’t seen it yet!)
After the events of The Amazing Spider-Man, Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) is being haunted by the death of Captain Stacy, so keeps himself busy juggling crime fighting, college and spending time with Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). When Electro emerges after a freak accident at Oscorp, Peter is faced with an enemy far stronger than himself. Plus, faced with the return of an old friend and the prospect of Gwen moving away, Peter’s life becomes less than straight forward.
I felt this was very much the middle film. While the plot was strong and the characters well developed, it felt like it spent a lot of time setting up for The Amazing Spider-Man 3. With the introduction of Green Goblin, Rhino and obvious hints to the Sinister Six in Oscorps basement, I felt there was a lot of setup rather than focussing on the film at hand. With this in mind, Jamie Foxx’s Electro was not quite his own character, ultimately reliant on Green Goblins command.
That’s not to say this is a bad film. Aside from the sequel set up, the plot is strong and enjoyable. The introduction of Electro is great. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing invisible no body Max Dillion turn from obsessive Spider-Man fan-boy, into one of Spider-Man’s strongest foes. I didn’t expect Jamie Foxx, someone I consider to be quite a serious actor to be the best fit for a comic book film but I was pleasantly surprised! Andrew Garfield is not surprisingly brilliant as Spider-Man. His performance is a great mix of sarcastic teenager and heart-wrenchingly emotional. similarly, Emma Stone is still brilliant as the smart and witty Gwen Stacy.
As for one of the greatest surprises in comic book history, I’m glad they stuck to it – even if it did take a while to come to it. (Cryptic and spoiler free enough for you?)
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a great watch, just not quite as strong as the first film. It suffers from middle film syndrome but is still worth a watch for some web slinging fun!