Monday, May 5, 2014

THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 Review: Third Act Saves This Film From Being Hollow

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is not a terrible movie or a flop. This is evident by the $92 million earned in its domestic opening weekend and the $369 million worldwide tally so far. (Yes there will be more Spidey from Sony since the budget for this sequel is rumored to be around $200 million.)

Its story's first two Acts are a mindless build toward the inevitable ending to Gwen Stacey that comic book fans have known about for decades. In the first two Acts of the sequel there is a major focus on two things: Spider-Man being a badass and the relationship of Peter Parker and Gwen. The Spider-Man being a badass part keeps interest high. Director Marc Webb and actor Andrew Garfield finally give Spidey fans the definitive take of the super hero. His persona, quips and cockiness are spot on more so than in any previous Spidey film.

However, the love story is where things are drawn out way to long. Peter obviously loves Gwen, and there's a good chemistry between the two actors, but Peter is still haunted by the promise he made to her dying father at the end of the first film. It's a very love-hate relationship for Peter and it goes on for the first two Acts of the film. Again, knowing the inevitable will happen to Gwen from the comics made a lot of this relationship stuff pointless. Peter should have loved her with all his heart and not had second thoughts about defying her father and this would've made the ending much more impactful instead of them breaking up while leading up to Gwen's end.

The story itself was not cramped, as many websites have written, but it felt pushed and rushed. The story actually gets rolling and exciting when Harry Osborn seeks out the assistance of Electro and breaks him out of Ravencroft. This seems to be the start of the third Act of the film and this is easily the best Act of the three.

Speaking of villains this sequel is not cramped with them either. The first two Acts are all origin and set up for Electro with some build of (re)establishing a long lost friendship between Peter and Harry. In a quick two scenes, both friends are reacquainted. Perhaps more time should have been spent with these two instead of with Peter and Gwen. It seemed like plenty of Peter and Harry was cut from the film.

Trailers showed more development between Peter and Harry. Where was the scene when Harry tells Peter that OsCorp is spying on him? There are moments in the second Act where OsCorp is spying on both Peter and Harry catching up with each other but not much was said about those few spy scenes.

Not to sound like a broken record but Act 3 is where the film actually gets good. Harry recruits Electro, Harry becomes Green Goblin, Spider-Man fights Electro and defeats him, Goblin attacks Spidey and Gwen is the casualty of that battle. Plus the set-up for more villains coming from OsCorp in future installments of the franchise.

Spider-Man doesn't kill Electro or Gobby so they could both be back. Electro just disappeared and Goblin will definitely be back. Finally, there is step-up for other villains and in the closing moments of the film you get to see Spidey versus Rhino. What a tease!!

Despite the slow and somewhat boring first two Acts of the film, the final third of the movie makes up for it. Is it worth to see this sequel in the theater? For all-things Spider-Man while he's in the suit... yes! But you could be asking yourself, while in your theater seat, when the film will pick up and become fun again. Just wait for Act 3, there's were all-things Spidey are being built into a hopefully much brighter future for the film franchise.

5.5 out of 10

Related Post: THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2: Promo Images Reveal OsCorp Creations; SINISTER SIX Could Start Production in 2015

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