Well, it's superhero entertainment. And not just that, it's some $200.000.000 superhero entertainment, so how can things be bad? And indeed, this also really isn't a bad movie, it's just lacking some focus at parts as well as a truly original and solid story to make this movie stand out from any other modern day genre attempt. That doesn't make this one different from most other $200.000.000 movies though. These type of movies always tend to play things safe and keep things as generic as possible, since there is too much money at stake. You can still complain about this of course but it's not always something that turns these movies into absolutely terrible ones as well.

Still think it's crazy that they thought it was necessary to reboot the Spider-Man franchise again already, only 5 years after Sam Raimi's trilogy was completed. They so easily could have simply continued the franchise, even with some completely different actors and director involved. It now instead feels like we are going over exactly the same things again, without really adding anything new or all that interesting to any of the characters and their back-story. Needless to say that I also wasn't too crazy about the first "The Amazing Spider-Man" movie but I have to say that this first sequel already definitely feels like an improvement over the first movie.

At the same time, it's still annoying how this movie basically feels like yet another origins story, in which yet again the main characters is dealing with loss and questions whether or not he's doing the right thing and should continue to be Spider-Man, or try to live a happy and normal life with his great love Gwen Stacy. It's annoying because you always already know the answer of course. Spider-Man will always be Spider-Man and he will still be in 100 years from now as well, I can safely guarantee you that. Why can't we just have some more superhero movies in which the superhero characters simply accept who and what they are. I'm sure of it that it would make some of the movies a whole lot more fun to watch. You can mostly 'blame' The Dark Knight-trilogy for this of course and yes, it's something that can work out as something great and interesting, if your movie and its tone is right for it. But this movie looks like simple entertainment, it feels like simple entertainment and in no way it feels like a realistic or thought provoking movie, in which there is plenty of room for some deeper and more serious dramatic themes.

And really, while this movie is fun enough and it also still features plenty of action in it, I still believe that it's not half as entertaining as it potentially could have been. Maybe it also appears that way due to how the movie is constructed. Every time that a big action scene is going to occur, you can already sense all of it coming from miles away already because of the way how it's constantly- and not so very subtly building up towards it. Things don't ever happen spontaneously, which is a reason why basically everything in this movie feels very predictable.

But the story itself is of course still mostly to blame for this. Now, the problem with the story isn't just that it's lacking some true creativity and surprises in it but also really that it's lacking a strong enough main plot line. Really, what was supposed to be the main story of this movie again? Was it the Peter Parker/Gwen Stacy romance? The Harry Osborn plot-line, in which he's looking for a cure for his disease? The Electro plot? The whole thing with Peter Parker dealing with the loss of his parents and all of the other emotional nonsense? The simple answer is that the movie is focusing on a bit of everything, without ever focusing on one main thing. It's the reason why some people say that the story feels too messy and appears to be all over the place. I agree with this as well but it's luckily not something that ever makes the movie a totally unwatchable one. The movie is just too fast paced for that. There is always something happening in the movie and it in no way feels like a two and a half hours long one.

One of the things that would have turned this movie into a more focused one would have been the presence of one good, clear, main villain. Now, I'm really not going to complain that this movie has too many villains in it, since that really isn't the problem but it's disappointing how there isn't really one big main villain in the movie. It's really OK for a movie to feature multiple different villains in it, as long as there's also one clear visible main threat for the entire movie. For instance, lets take another superhero movie, "X-Men". Now, that's a movie that features villains such as Mystique, Toad, Sabretooth and Magneto in it, yet it's never a doubt or question that once Magneto is taken down, the big threat is gone as well and the movie can safely end, since he's the one main, big, villain of the movie, who controls the 'smaller' villains and is the man with the plan. That's however not the case for this movie as well. Who was supposed to be the main villain in this, Electro or the Green Goblin? Guess the answer would have to be Electro, also seeing how the movie at some places is titled "The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Rise of Electro" but there are points in the movie in which the Electro character really isn't playing much of a part and in some ways he gets controlled by the Green Goblin, who however is only in the movie for just a few minutes. And if Electro truly was supposed to be the big main villain in this, then why turn him into a somewhat sympathetic character, that we can feel and care for?

In some ways, he even feels more sympathetic than the Spider-Man/Peter Parker character but that's also because I'm still really not a big fan of Andrew Garfield's Spider-Man/Peter Parker. He's too cocky and overconfident for my taste, which also certainly goes at the expense of the suspense and fun of the movie at times. He's never really scared of anything, not even when he's faced by a guy (none other than Paul Giamatti) in a giant rhino suit, who can shoot missiles and 1 million rounds per minute (yes, I just made that number up). If he isn't ever scared and constantly seems to know what he's doing, then why should we as the viewers ever feel any suspense or be in any doubt about the eventual outcome?

It's also not a crime to use some more practical effects at times you know. When given a large budget, film-makers always tend to get lazy and rather spend money on CGI effects than going through the time and trouble of doing things the 'old fashioned' and creative way. And I'm really not complaining about the movie its effects, since they are all some good looking ones that add to the entertainment of the movie but by using some more practical effects you can also make the movie a more grounded- and therefor also more realistic and engaging one. This is something "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" just recently proved.

But I'll stop my complaining and leave it up to other people, who are all clearly being overly judgmental and harsh toward this movie. It's really not a terrible movie in my own personal opinion, though I still clearly have plenty of problems with it as well. It's still very easy to simply enjoy this movie for what it is and feel entertained by it. It's some fast paced, blockbuster, superhero entertainment, with plenty of action and striking visuals. Really far from the worst thing the genre has to offer!


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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