Movie Review: The Amazing Spider-Man

By Melinda VanLone | Movie Review

Jul 20

When I first saw the previews for The Amazing Spider-Man, I thought really? Didn’t they just make this? I remember Toby Maguire and how great he looked in that spidey-suit. It wasn’t all that long ago. Can’t Hollywood come up with something original?

I still say Hollywood should invest in some original material, but having seen The Amazing Spider-Man, I can also say I thoroughly enjoy myself, even if it is a re-boot. It’s a slightly different take on the story, but the basics are still there and the parts that differ from the previous movie attempts still stem from the comic series so they aren’t out of place. Peter still gets bit by a spider. He’s still a shy, awkward, high school kid who is brilliant and likes photography. He still lives with his Aunt and Uncle. Where this differed was the bad guy, and the girl friend. This time instead of it being the Green Goblin, it’s The Lizard. And his girlfriend isn’t Mary Jane, it’s Gwen Stacy. If you’ve read the comics, all of this will sound familiar to you. If you haven’t, then you have a reason to see the movie. The plot is different from the other one, and just as solid and in some cases, far more believable.

Not that I look for believability in my superheros. I don’t. But in this case, I loved how they made his web slinger an invention of his own design rather than a biological by-product of the spider bite. I liked the bit of backstory about his parents, and the set up for the bad guy as well. Everyone had their own reasons and motivations, and all of them were plausible.

I think the thing I enjoyed most, other than the special effects which were fantastic, was how even though I knew the basic story, and even though I knew that Spidey should win in the end (I mean, what kind of super-hero doesn’t win the day?), they still created some tense moments where I started to wonder. The bad guy seemed undefeatable. I began to worry that this time, he was going to get his behind kicked and there’d be no coming back. He’s just a kid, I thought to myself. The problem seemed insurmountable. That’s when I knew I was watching a good story. At the end of the day that’s exactly why I go to the movies.

I’d love to talk about the ending, especially after our recent debate about such things. If I had to categorize this, I’d say Lisa and Diane would be a big fan of the ending. It was realistic, and hopeful. And I didn’t mind. Come to think of it, Marcy would enjoy it too. Could it be this is one movie we’d all agree on?

No matter what you know or think you know about the comics or the Spider-Man story in general, this is worth a visit to the theater. See it in 3-D, the effects are totally worth it.

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