The Amazing Spider-Man

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The Amazing Spider-Man

It’s web 2.0. Five years since Sam Raimi hung up his ‘I Love NY’ cap and Tobey Maguire ditched the Spandex, it’s the turn of director Marc Webb (‘500 Days of Summer’) and British actor Andrew Garfield (‘The Social Network’) to turn back the Spidey-clock and start again. Memories are short in Hollywood, and generations are measured in dog years.

This version of the Marvel Comics staple is an origin tale (dead dad, classroom bullying, spider-bite) which is low on psychological trauma and high on regular teen woes. Again we learn how Peter Parker (Garfield) lost his parents and gained a mask. But the evolution into a swinging, slinging city vigilante is framed squarely by recognisable adolescent awkwardness and romantic troubles involving his schoolmate and new girlfriend, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone), daughter of  the city’s chief of police (Denis Leary). Garfield is more robust and charming than Maguire, and he forms a pleasing Brit-acting axis with Rhys Ifans, who plays his adversary Dr Curt Connors, later The Lizard.

Webb and the film’s writers have done a smart job of making a snappy blockbuster with few pretensions: ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ is light on its feet and feels both intimate and expansive, smoothly making the transition from hanging out in school corridors to hanging off the sides of buildings. Webb offers no radical rethink about how to craft a comic-book summer movie, but he delivers a enjoyable rush over a patchwork of genres – romance, action, sci-fi, horror and comedy (there’s almost one for every leg of a spider) – while avoiding bumps at the joins. The action sequences are gripping and have a bouncy, parkour-style giddiness to them.

Garfield gets the best lines and is a comic, often slapstick, presence for much of the movie as he learns how to cope with his new powers. There’s a great scene on the subway as he bumps into fellow commuters (only a Brit could deliver the ‘I’m so sorry’ line). Webb gives the Spider-Man story a distinctly light touch: even when Spider-Man and The Lizard are smashing their way through a school, he allows us momentarily to view the scene from the perspective of an elderly librarian with headphones on. We’re never far from romance or laughs, and at times ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ feels like a romcom upgraded to include 3D and industrial-strength cobwebs.

Spidey is the ultimate New York superhero, and this is full of nods to the city’s movie heritage. There’s a touch of Woody Allen to some of Garfield’s twitchy scenes, while ‘King Kong’ looms over Spidey’s skyscraper-top encounter with The Lizard. There’s even a scene where Parker mopes down the street with his shoulders hanging low like DeNiro in ‘Taxi Driver’. This lone gun with a red sock over his head also feels an urge to clean up the streets – but his New York is mostly benign, a place where crane drivers and cops wave him on his way and the skyline sparkles in approval. Soft, yes, but also satisfying.

By: Dave Calhoun


Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Tuesday July 3 2012
Duration: 136 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Marc Webb
Cast: Andrew Garfield
Irrfan Khan
Emma Stone
Sally Field
C Thomas Howell
Martin Sheen
Rhys Ifans
Denis Leary

Average User Rating

3.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:5
  • 3 star:5
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
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This film ticked all the boxes for me, I thought there wasn't as much "romancy" bits in it compared to the Toby Maguire ones. I think Andrew Garfield plays an epic spider-man and I like him even more as he adds teenage comedy into it. it needs a sequal though but aginst batman dark knight rises it beats it by a country mile. 4 and a half stars

lf the Raimi version is Ditko this one is Romita. l know which one l prefer...

I really enjoyed this reboot of Spiderman. I felt that Andrew Garfield's character delivered more gusto than Toby Maguire's Peter Parker portaying much more inner anger. This version is also definately truer to the comic books than Raimi's version and delivered a more gritty storyline. It isn't perfect but cannot be compared to Nolans Batman in way of realism in that Batman is a man with gadgets whereas Spiderman is bestowed with a superpower. Let's see how Man of Steel translates before that debate can truly take place.

a pleasant surprise -better than raimi version and truer to the original source -also garfield is a natural and emma stone looks pretty too -the visual style is splendid and on top of that much better than batman 3 -best summer blockbuster yet

Very enjoyable but more for the acting than the plot and special effects. Character led and fun, but found the Rhys Ifans character lightweight and not a spot on the Green Lantern or especially Alfred Molina's brilliant Doctor Octopus. Welll worth two and a half hours of your time though.

I am too lazy to comment in every aspect.But I do believe that had this movie come before Raimi's version people would be tearing Raimi's version to shreds.This is far more true to the comics than Raimi's, for those of you that don't know. Garfield and Stone were great.The unanswered questions?It is obvious they r cliffhangers for the sequel. To me this is THE Spider-man movie, even though, I do believe they could have done better with the Lizzard.

I am too lazy to comment in every aspect.But I do believe that had this movie come before Raimi's version people would be tearing Raimi's version to shreds.This is far more true to the comics than Raimi's, for those of you that don't know. Garfield and Stone were great.The unanswered questions?It is obvious they r cliffhangers for the sequel. To me this is THE Spider-man movie, even though, I do believe they could have done better with the Lizzard.

Sadly for the genre this is a flawed Spiderman film. Laden with way too many soppy scenes and then jumping oddly from slapstick to action it just doesn't work. The 3D is disappointing, almost pointless and not used enough and Garfield just doesn't get the part well. Sadly one of the worst of the latest revamped Spiderman films.

Lot of people seem to be giving this 1 star because it's not any better than the original, but it's still worthy of at least 3 stars, right? If I had to, I'd give this a 3 1/2 stars, or 4 if pushed Shame they took out the Lizard student face-licking scene that I saw last summer as an exclusive preview - It made him seem more evil. I thought Rhys Ifans did an admiral job for a villain that was written as being nicer than nasty - He would have done better if they turned his character into something more EVIL. Good job Webb! Just not as satisfying as Raimi's.

I thought nothing about this movie was better than the original version from ten years ago.

Overall, I did find this very predictable. In fact, I think I might be getting sick of superhero films at last. Having said that, Andrew Garfield is very appealing, though both he and Emma Stone do seem too old for the roles they're playing. Also, the Lizard storyline wasn't too compelling, and I actually thought the cgi wasn't great either. But: I liked the spidey POV shots - that was new, I thought - and also some of the dialogue was fun and a bit different, I thought. But on the whole, predictable and uninvolving.

Well, I knew I'd seen it all before, but I couldn't see any reason for this "reboot" at all. Garfield and Stone were excellent, but there was nothing new here: the script was really clunky in places with lots of threads dropped, the "Lizard" was a really poor bad guy, Rhys Ifans performance definitely a low point. I'd say if you've not seen the other films, this one is a good one to start with. But if you've seen any of the others, you've already seen this one.

Is it any good? It is worth going to see? The answer to both is a clear yes. As per a few of the other reviewers I feel to review gets it pretty much right. It is good and in places very good. It just doesn't quite turn very good often enough and there are no real excellent or superb moments. For me it is a 7 out of 10 film. A good 3 star just not quite very good often enough to be a true 4 star movie. Don't get me wrong it is good and you shouldn't miss it on the big screen but for me not quite a 4 star.

I saw the 2002 version of Spider Man and – save for Kirsten Dunst – thought it was pretty good. I couldn’t think why another remake was necessary so soon, and what twist could be added to the story. But I was wrong. From the opening titles, this film is excellent – a word I rarely use in my reviews. The CGI is exceptional. I don’t always like 3d/CGI as the cinematography can sometimes be fuzzy, but not with this film – it was crisp from start to finish. The storyline is good – and similar to other Spider Mans, but it’s really the CGI that now brings this story to life. The 3d was obvious throughout the film - something that's rare in films that are advertised as 3d. . The casting’s also excellent – Sally Field, Martin Sheen, Emma Stone, and Andrew Garfield – all great. I thought Stone and Garfield a believable match. Even Rhys Ifans was good. The storyline and script are great. The storyline's humourous in many places. Possibly a few scenes are a little longer than they needed to be – but that’s the only fault I could find. I’d like to think the Oscar/Academy panel would consider this film for cinematography and CGI quality next year. It’ll be interesting to see what Time Out regulars ScrumpyJack and ARCHGATE make of this one. Few films are good enough for 5 stars, but this certainly warrants 4 stars from me.

Dave Calhoun's review is spot on in all respects. This is a great film. Usually I get bored in superhero movies once the 'transfiguration from a normal human' section of the story finishes. This was great throughout, largely due to great dialogue and the chemistry between Garfield and Stone. The action sequences are really dynamic - I watched it in 2D as I dislike 3D, but must grudgingly admit that it will probably be stunning in that format. By the way scrumpyjack, after your 'light sabre' comments re. Jaws (which did make me smile), some tit actually took a phone call during the closing scenes when we watched this!