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THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 Spoilers Forum – What Did You Think?

With The Amazing Spider-Man 2 slinging its way to a weekend gross of $90 million or more, it’s pretty clear audiences still love hanging out with Peter Parker, even after five films in the last 12 years. The sequel to 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man isn’t just a sequel, though. No, this is the film that Sony has set up to be a launching pad for an entire Spider-Man universe, which will include a Sinister Six film, a Venom spin-off and last but not least, a few more Amazing Spider-Man sequels.

Amazing Spider-Man 2

So? Was the super sequel up to the task of setting up an entire universe while also succeeding as a sequel? Let’s find out.

WARNING:  The Rest Of This Post Contains Massive Spoilers From The Film.  Read At Your Own Risk.

Recycling: Good for the Environment, Bad for Movies

Plain and simple, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a mixed bag. The opening sequence, featuring Peter’s parents on a private jet in some kind of James Bond-esque action sequence, is pointless. Yes, it sets up an odd (and overly complex) plot point later on, but it was established in the film’s predecessor that Peter’s parents died in a plane crash. Retreading old ground on a film that was already considered a retread from the original Spider-Man films, to the point of even showing footage from the first Amazing Spider-Man, is either really, really lazy, or really, really meta. My money’s on lazy. So, right off the bat, it’s unclear if the audience has stepped into a re-release of The Amazing Spider-Man. Peter also has visions of Gwen Stacy’s father (played by Denis Leary), and the sequel shows footage from the first film featuring Captain Stacy. Most franchises don’t delve into the “let’s show footage from older films” arena until at least part three (see: The Dark Knight Rises). It’s been one movie, guys. We can keep up.
Amazing Spider-Man 2
Even the relationship between Peter (Andrew Garfield) and Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) is a recycled from Spider-Man 2, to diminishing returns. In both part two’s, Peter is afraid to commit to the woman he loves, for fear he’ll put her in mortal danger. In Spider-Man 2, that leads Mary-Jane Watson to find love in the arms of another man. Here, Gwen just mopes around until she invites Peter back into her life, as if Peter’s rejection of her was merely a blip in the road.

When The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Gets Original

The good news is when Amazing Spider-Man 2 breaks new ground in the series, it’s pretty good. The Times Square sequence, where Spider-Man first meets Electro (Jamie Foxx) is fantastic, and second only to the elevated train sequence in Spider-Man 2 in terms of excitement. The main thing this new Spider-Man series does that Raimi’s triology did not was make Oscorp a villain unto itself. Yes, Oscorp always hung around in Raimi’s films, but Webb has made Oscrop Headquarters the jumping off point for every villain in the series. It’s the smartest move the new series has made.

A Movie is Only as Good as It’s Villain(s)

The villains Foxx, as Electro’s alter ego Max Dillon, is fantastic as the sad, lonely Oscorp employee. It’s a shame that once Max becomes Electro, all personality goes out the window, but such is life. Dane DeHaan is more suited to Harry Osborne than James Franco was, with his emo anger boiling under the surface. Once he becomes Green Goblin, though, all subtlety goes out the window. DeHaan, for all his talents, doesn’t do over-the-top very well. There is a moment where he looks at Gwen, trying to decide her fate, where he struggles with his conscience, but the rest is just normal villain stuff.
Goblin

The Rhino – Why??

Far and away the worst part of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is rhino. Paul Giamatti is almost unintelligible in his horrific Russian accent, and even then he’s spitting out terrible lines, like “I will crush you, I will kill you.” There’s really no need for the Rhino to be in the film at all. Anyone who thought Thor: The Dark World’s Malekith was poorly written ain’t seen nothing yet.
Thankfully, he only shows up at the beginning, in a fun chase through the streets of New York, and doesn’t make another appearance until the end, as the first member of…

The Sinister Six Rises

While locked up in the Ravencroft Institute, aka the Spidey-verse’s Arkham Asylum, Harry meets with a Mr. Fiers (probably Gustav Fiers), where they decide to put the Sinister Six into action, with Rhino being the first. All of the six’s weapons are hidden in the Special Projects ward at Oscorp, where we also see Doctor Octopus’s robotic arms and Vulture’s wings. The end credits also hint at the other members of the cinematic Sinister Six, including Mysterio and Kraven the Hunter.
Amazing Spider-Man 2
The big question is “does The Amazing Spider-Man 2 set up this big universe the studio wants?” Sort of, yes. Like the original trilogy, which featured a pre-Lizard Curt Connors and John Jameson, the film is peppered with characters like Felicia Hardy (Felicity Jones), who becomes Black Cat, and the future villain Alistair Smythe (B.J. Novak). J. Jonah Jameson, the editor-in-chief of The Daily Bugle, makes an appearance, but only in an e-mail response to Peter. His face is never seen.

What did you think of The Amazing Spider-Man 2? Let us know in the comments below!

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The Author

Ryan Hill

Ryan Hill

Ryan Hill used to spend his time writing screenplays into a notebook instead of doing homework. That love of film and all things storytelling led him to spend most of his time writing. He's been a film critic in North Carolina for over five years, and his debut novel, THE BOOK OF BART, is out now. Please buy it. Ryan also feels odd about referring to himself in the third person.