Monday, July 23, 2012

Movie Talk: Amazing, Fantastical, Splendiferous Spider-Man

Let's cut to the chase. Did the movie live up to the hype? With three movies already under Spidey's belt in the form of the Maguire Trilogy, did Garfield leave his mark so that we might be blessed(/cursed) with another updated trilogy? Or are we reeling from another terrible Spider-Man 3 and force to shake our fists at the screen while doing our best Jon Arbuckle impression?

No major spoilers but beware if you're particularly sensitive to minor plot discussion, don't read - just go watch it.

Don't be so glum, Pete. All teenagers go through this phase.

Personally there are three things that make the superhero movie for me. The Costume, Adaptation of "The Origin", The Personality.

The Costume

When we look at Garfield's costume we immediately recognise the blue and red. They even show a montage of  how he dreams up the idea from a series of internet searches and the tools he has around him. For example the sun-glasses inspiring the look of the whole suits' mesh style. They also hammer home the fact that Peter is a serious technical-whizz, this time, by certain obvious signs like: the computer-operated-door-lock on his bedroom. So his making of the webshooters and costume is a little more believable but still a bit absurd for a teenager to pull out of his ass. But, hey, I've seen some damn good costumes - it could happen!

I call it: The Spider-Harp.

The Personality

What Maguire lacked, I felt, was the variation of emotion. He always looked so confused and was always a childish Peter pandering to the other characters, as if he was rushed out of school way too early. Which is in some ways the thing I disliked most about the Maguire Trilogy - he didn't stay in high school very long. The high school years are the best years and they demanded a lot more attention - probably why most people think that Spider-Man 1 was the best.

Garfield gives us the uninhibited comedic Spidey, the serious avenger side following The Death, the tormented-lonely-Peter and nerdy-spasticated-Peter. His Peter is much less power-geek, with his head in the books, and has more of a althetic side to him, in the form of skateboarding, but only a minor amount enough to believe that his skill doesn't appear from nowhere despite how amazing it is.

He hit all the marks I had set, going from introvert-awkward-conversation-Pete to uninhibited masked-wonder and didn't disappoint.

So where do I buy one of these? WalMart?

The "Origin"

They knew not to mess with the formula and Uncle Ben sadly (once again) met his end after Peter neglects to stop an armed thief. We don't get to see Peter have his moment with the killer, like in the Maguire Trilogy, but he has great scenes as Spider-Man pursuing any criminal that remotely looks like the killer - obsessively hunting for him.

You'll be the superhero one day, Ben. ;_;7

It was nice to see Gwen on screen as a main character, I feel MJ gets enough limelight in the comics nowadays, hopefully she doesn't meet the same end as her comicbook counterpart in Amazing Spider-Man 2, but it's definitely still on the cards. Emma Stone is a nice counter-balance to Garfield and brings his comedy to light, she's also a "no-nonsense" girl so she even has some scenes where she does the more believable thing rather than runs off and hides like ol' MJ did - time and time again.

Oh and it couldn't be a superhero movie without a villain: Dr. Curt Connors. The story was a bit lacklustre with the Lizard being more of a throwaway villain, the master plan was a bit too stereotypical for my liking (he was missing his Villain's Moustache though). You get the feeling he is just the "stepping stone" for whoever will appear in the sequel, which isn't a bad thing it just deflates his worth a significant amount. So, the sequel? Green Goblin? Probably. The Vulture? Sure. Mysterio? Ugh, I HOPE not.

No. No, no, no. NO!


Overall the action in the movie was very well done, particularly noteworthy is how they handle the fight scenes. Occasionally "Spidey-Cam" would kick in and follow him in his acrobatics making sure you felt every blow and followed every move.

An emotionally varied movie that actually hooked you in a lot more than the previous Trilogy did. There are some silly moments, but they're minor and glossed over by a wonderful shiny web. Good going, Garfield! Can we have Spider-Man in Avengers 2 and then Amazing Spider-Man 2 soon, Mr. Webb?

This is your reward for reading to the end. Well done.

tl;dr: Funny-Spider-Man. Emotional. Satisfying. Action-packed. Webtastical.

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