The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Review: Just Go See Captain America Again

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The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is such an epic disaster that it actually has a lot of camp value. The best comparison I can come up with is the uproariously watchable Joel Schumacher Batman movies.

This is perhaps the most colorful Spider-Man movie to date, but it doesn’t match up to any of it’s predecessors except Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3, which caused this reboot in the first place. Oddly enough, the two movies have a lot of the same problems. There are too many villains, too many subplots, and too many terrible lines like “oh, how the tables have turned” (Yes, someone actually says that line in the movie. Yes, they mean it seriously).

Picking up where The Amazing Spider-Man left off, Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) is continuing his search for answers regarding his parents while juggling high school graduation, a girlfriend, and being New York’s number one hero. Meanwhile, a new villain arrises out of evil-organization Oscorp in the form of Electro (Jaime Foxx), after he falls into a vat of electric eels. Meanwhile, Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan) is dying and needs Spider-Man’s blood to save himself. Meanwhile, Peter’s girlfriend Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) is trying to get into Oxford. Throw in the Rhino (Paul Giamatti) and you’ve got a comic book movie that crumbles under its own weight.

The scenes between Garfield and Stone work really well, with the former still redefining Spider-Man in the best imaginable manner. But Foxx and DeHaan leave much to be desired. The effects on Electro are expectedly electrifying, but his character has cheap motives and even cheaper looking make-up. DeHaan overacts in such an angsty teenage manner that even Twilight fans will roll their eyes. The best villain is Giamatti’s Rhino, mostly because Giamatti seems to be in on some kind of joke that the rest of the cast isn’t and just has a ball throwing his best Russian accent at us. Too bad he’s only in two scenes.

Then there’s the snooze of a subplot regarding Peter’s parents. I saw the movie just a few hours ago and am reading the Wikipedia page trying to reconnect it to the rest of the plot. Guess what, it really doesn’t have much to do with anything. At least most of the movie surrounding Peter’s side-quest has way more camp value. Not nearly as intentional as the dance sequences in Spider-Man 3, but there’s plenty to laugh at in the dialogue.

Still, in classic comic book nature, there’s a great twist at the end that has me fascinated in where Peter’s arc will go next. Hopefully, The Amazing Spider-Man 3, already slated for 2016, finds a way to focus in on a single story, not four. Garfield is still too perfect of a Spidey for me to give up on this franchise. That being said, to reference Raimi’s films, this sequel is way more of a Spider-Man 3 when it desperately needed to be a Spider-Man 2Grade: C

By Matt Dougherty

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