Durf Reviews: THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN

So, did it live up the hype? Read and find out..(It's a little late, but it was requested...)

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By Durf - 8/7/2012
“The Amazing Spider-Man” is a reboot that many, myself included, felt was happening too soon. However, the trailers and TV spots got us hyped and many were excited to see it. But was it good, or was it a disappointing and pointless reboot? Read on to find out…


(WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!)



Let’s start by discussing the cast of the movie. The cast is fantastic here. Martin Sheen and Sally Field do a great job as Uncle Ben and Aunt May respectively, despite a lack of much to do in the movie. Chris Zylka does a good job as Flash Thompson, and actually adds a little depth to the character in the small amount of time he is on screen. Captain Stacy is played brilliantly by Denis Leary. Leary plays Stacy with some humor, but also makes him very convincing as a both a father and police officer. It really is too bad we won’t be seeing him in any sequels. Rhys Ifans does a very good job as Curtis Connors/Lizard. You actually believe watching this movie that Ifans is a brilliant scientist that believes in what he is doing. Also you see that Connors is compassionate and caring at times, mostly when he is dealing Peter and talking with him about his parents. He is also brilliant in his portrayal of Connors process of slipping into madness and does a great job of hinting at The Lizard taking over with his little twitches and movements. It is very nuanced and fantastic. The biggest strength of the cast however is the two leads. Andrew Garfield is brilliant as Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Garfield does a great job of giving Peter emotional depth and showing us the anguish he goes through after finding out about his parents and after Ben’s death. You can really see the pain he goes through and you feel for him. The genius aspect of Peter is done well here and Garfield is believable as someone who would be that incredibly smart, as well as the nerd/social outcast. As Spider-Man he does a great job delivering the trademark quips of Spider-Man and overall is fantastic. However the best member of this cast is Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy. Stone is fantastic in everything she is in, but I think she really ratchets it up a notch here. Not only does she look like Gwen brought to life from the comic, but she also nails all of her character traits. She is more than believable as a genius and actually is very vital to the plot in that regard. The trademark “I’m hot, but don’t really know it” aspect of Gwen is nailed by Stone. Also Stone does a fantastic job of making Gwen friendly and nice, as well as sort of shy and madly in love with Peter. The relationship she has Peter is brilliantly done. Unlike the female leads in the previous Spider-Man movies, Gwen is strong and independent in this movie, and it is refreshing. There really aren’t enough words for me to describe how much I loved this performance.


There are some other great things about this movie besides the cast. Once again, Gwen is done well and is actually more important to the plot than the usual love interest just there for Peter to save. The action is pretty good, especially the fight in the school between Spider-Man and The Lizard. That scene is also where we get the greatest Stan Lee cameo yet. Spider-Man has all the defining traits from the comics here. Everything from being a genius to his wisecracks during fights is here. Also, it is great to finally get the web-shooters in this movie. The Lizard is finally used as a villain in a Spider-Man, which is fantastic. I really liked how they made him very intelligent, but also very savage. The story, although not really original, is pretty good and The Lizard’s plan is something right out of the comics.


However, there are several things that don’t work here. The Lizard’s look, although not as bad as I originally thought, is not very good. He does occasionally, and I hate to say this, look like a Goomba from “Super Mario Bros.”, and a lot of times when he talked it just looked silly. Connors’ family is noticeably absent here, which is disappointing because they would have added another interesting dynamic to the character. Also Connors relationship with Peter isn’t very strong. Another thing wrong with The Lizard here is his motivations. He just suddenly wants to turn everybody into lizards without much explanation as to why. Peter’s parents and Uncle Ben’s death are glossed over pretty quick, and don’t have much payoff for the storylines they spawn. Speaking of Uncle Ben, why didn’t we get the “Great Power” line? Peter at times is also kind of a jerk, especially to Ben, May, and Flash. It is completely out of character for him to act that way. Peter having the web-shooters is fantastic, but how did he never run out of web? Even in the comics he ran out of web at really bad times, so why not here? In this movie we get the “Death of Captain Stacy” storyline in a way, but it felt like it was too soon and a waste of a good character. One thing I absolutely hated was the crane scene. That might be the cheesiest and stupidest thing I have ever seen in a movie. There are three other things that need further discussion though: the after credits scene, Dr. Ratha and the numerous dropped plotlines of the movie.


Where to start with the after credits scene? Well, it makes no sense. We get Connors in prison and a man shows up in his cell and asks him if he told Peter about his father. Ok, but how did this guy get in the cell? Was he there before Connors was put in there? It’s not really addressed. And what is it that he didn’t want Connors to tell Peter? Who is this guy? Why does he suddenly disappear? Is he a figment of Connors’ imagination, or is he actually another villain? None of these questions are addressed. Most after credits scenes are designed to be something fun, an easter egg, or a teaser for the next movie(s). They usually make sense though and have a point. This one doesn’t make sense or have an obvious point. Also, no one can tell whether this was an easter egg, a tease, or something fun. My guess is that this guy is some other villain like Electro or Norman Osborn, but can’t be sure. This is not a good after credits scene.



Speaking of characters that make no sense, what was the point of Dr. Ratha? He’s played up as important in the ads for the movie, and in the first half of the film is built up as important. Then after Connors becomes The Lizard for the first time and he pursues Ratha to the bridge, poof! Ratha disappears. Ok, but where did he go? Did Connors kill him? Did he get away? Did he go on vacation to The Bahamas? We get no such answers! He just suddenly up and disappears from the rest of the movie. This just makes his character completely pointless and makes all the build up for his character a waste. Well, I guess it could start a new meme and game called “Where is Ratha?”, but that’s about it. It is just baffling. Also, he constantly references Norman Osborn, but we never see Osborn. So instead of getting Osborn, a very important character to Spider-Man, we get a throwaway character that only references him? That is just stupid. Oh, and Ratha trying to get a cure for Osborn (for what?) is dropped, thus further cementing Ratha as pointless.


Including the Ratha and Osborn stories, there are a ton of dropped storylines and plot pieces. Probably the biggest one is the “Untold Story” involving Peter’s parents. They introduce the storyline with Peter’s parents early on and make it seem really important, especially Richard Parker’s research. Then suddenly the story is dropped. Why put anything in the movie about it then? Without it, the “Untold Story” is just the same origin story that has been told already, so it ceases to be an “Untold Story.” Another big storyline dropping is the Uncle Ben’s killer story. Early on in the movie when Peter first becomes Spider-Man we get a storyline where Peter searches for his uncle’s killer. That is fine, but he doesn’t find him and the storyline is dropped. What was the point of this? Nothing, it’s just another pointless storyline to be dropped at will. One more plot point that is dropped is the Lizard’s Cop Army. The Lizard makes an army by turning the cops into giant lizards like him and this is focused on. It teases that maybe Peter will have to fight them, but unfortunately he doesn’t. In fact, we don’t even see them again until the cure is dispersed and they revert back to human. Why focus on them then, if you aren’t going anywhere with them? The dropped storylines and plot points are extremely frustrating and are the thing that hurts this movie the most. They make the movie feel rushed and unfinished.


So, what are my final thoughts? I do enjoy the film despite its flaws, although it’s not as good as it could have been. It has lots of flaws, and the dropped storylines and plot points make it feel unfinished. The movie is definitely saved by the cast (especially Stone) and by the fact that Spider-Man himself is very faithful (for the most part) to the comics. Even though the reboot happened too soon, it’s pretty good as far as reboots go. I would say it’s better than Spider-Man 3, but not on the same level Spider-Man 1 or 2. Overall, it’s not a bad start to a new series and the sequel will hopefully improve upon this one.


7.8/10
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30 Comments
SAT - 8/7/2012, 3:45 PM
I agree with almost all your points! I persoanly think that Andrew was the strongest of the cast, but I'm a proud Marvelite Fangirl so I MAY be biased.....
Apperantly the movie we saw in theatre was not what it was supposed to be. A little while before the movie was released, a guy from Sony saw the movie & hated it. So Sony had Marc Webb edit whatever they didnt like, & one of those scenes was the death/whatever happened to Dr.Ratha. Even without Sony shoving its self in to take controll, the movie would still have some flaws I'm sure. I partially agree with you about the crane scene, it had the potential to be really cool, but came off a bit too cheesy. And I really wish they wouldv'e put in the "With great power..." line. If they were going for differant they couldv'e had Uncle Ben say the line in the voice message he left Peter, that Pete listens to at the end. And I thought I wa sthe only one who noticed that Flash was actually well done in this. Overall GREAT review!
Durf - 8/7/2012, 3:48 PM
thanks bud. And yeah I got the feeling that's what Sony did
TheGothamKnight1939 - 8/7/2012, 3:57 PM
Nice work, spot on review.
Ghostfire - 8/7/2012, 3:58 PM
Great Review Durf..


Durf - 8/7/2012, 4:03 PM
The love is almost palpable in here. I can almost feel the boobs...er, love. Yeah, love is what I meant...

lol
TheAmazingSpidey63 - 8/7/2012, 4:43 PM
@Durf - Dude, you took the words right out of my mouth with your review (very well-written, bud). When I saw this movie, I was pretty excited to see what this would hold for me. Spider-Man is my absolute #1 favorite Marvel hero in the MU, and to have a movie of Spider-Man that'll give the character and the Spider-Man mythos justice would be awesome. With TASM, it did give us something new, fresh, for us to see. While, like you said in your review, there were some gripes that I had with the film, it was still entertaining to me. Garfield definitely gave us a very well performed Spidey, and I'm just happy to see that (thank you, Andrew). And that also goes for Stone with her amazing (no pun intended) performance as the beautiful Gwen Stacy.
Again, bro, an awesome review on an entertaining movie. Hit me up when your review for The Avengers come out. Stay EPIC, my friend. :)


Oh, and here ya go........



Awesome job, man.
Durf - 8/7/2012, 4:47 PM
Thanks guys. Loving the boobs 63. lol
TonyChu - 8/7/2012, 4:55 PM
@teabag I don't know who that is but she can be my Mary Jane anydsy!!
TonyChu - 8/7/2012, 4:55 PM
*anyday
Durf - 8/7/2012, 4:56 PM
yoss, tea thank you. Hold up. Did I just get a tea-bomb on my review? I feel so special...
aztecRaingod - 8/7/2012, 4:58 PM
I thought the lizard CGI looked very, very good. My only gripe against him was that he wasn’t ferocious enough (though I hear that this is very in line with the Lizards origin, as he originally maintained much of his humanity)

I had no problem with the ambiguity of the after credits scene.

The point of Dr. Ratha is he is the intermediary between Osborne and the other characters. It had been established the Osborne is deathly ill, thus Ratha is his right hand man.

I don’t think we have seen the last of Peters Parents, and I think many things will be revealed in the next flick, thus I don’t agree with your assessment that it’s a dropped story line.


This was a very well acted movie with several inspiring/terse moments, the kind that give you goosebumps….

Spiderman giving the kid his mask in order to make him courageous.

The lining up of the cranes.

Captain Stacy realizing he must allow Spider Man to confront the lizard, as he is the only one who can.

8.5/10
Jollem - 8/7/2012, 4:59 PM
i like how the only pic you put up was dr. ratha

i guess i'll follow suit and add to the sexiness...



...did i do it right?
Durf - 8/7/2012, 5:01 PM
lol Jollem. I guess that will do fine.

On the pic thing, I didn't want it to be too pic heavy, but wanted to break the text up some.
Durf - 8/7/2012, 5:03 PM
@aztec: I can respect that. I like your views on the issues I brought up. Although I may not agree, I do appreciate your ideas on those issues. Thank you for commenting
aztecRaingod - 8/7/2012, 5:03 PM
The story line of Parkers searching for Bens killer wasn’t merely “dropped”. Peter realized he had a very unhealthy obsession when he was confronted at the dinner table by Gwen Stacy, and simply decided to let go of this obsession.
aztecRaingod - 8/7/2012, 5:06 PM
My bad, he was confronted by Captain Stacy at the dinner table.
Cosmic1 - 8/7/2012, 5:07 PM
Me (38), my dad (67), my nephew (13) and my nephew (6), were all a bit disappointed in the movie. My dads biggest question was why did they retell the origin instead of comming with an original action packed movie. We all saw the first 3 and so have many other people sonim guessing this is a common feeling. As for the lizard fight scenes and transformation were handled brilliantly, the scene with him in the lab coat looked a spitting image of the ditko lizard and actually added some humanity to the character, they should have used it more. I know some people didn't like hi appearence, but I did all accept for his feet, why did he have ostrich feet instead of lizard feet? Looked kinda funny to me but maybe that's because I'm in the reptile business and know what their feet look like. Anyway I give it about a 2.5 out of 5 rating and hope the sequal is better or have to wait for marvel to get the rights back after Sony looses to much money on it and has to give/sell it back like they did the merchandising rights.
Jollem - 8/7/2012, 5:07 PM
dr. ratha was a stone cold prick. i was able to understand everything he said after about the fourth or fifth time
Durf - 8/7/2012, 5:20 PM
@yoss: it's all good

@aztec: true, but still kinda weak

@Cosmic: Nice, I feel ya

@Jollem: yeah Ratha was a giant prick
amazingwebhead1 - 8/7/2012, 5:24 PM
ok you make a good point about dr connors family, it's like they never existed. i know ultimate universe from what i've read i haven't seen his family. but that's a major reason why peter want's to save connors from being the lizard cause deep down he's a good person and a family man. i'm a big fan of spider-man and i was upset with this movie andrew garfield did a horrible job as peter parker i just thought he was some punk skater outcast that didn't really know science just some quick blips through out the movie. aunt may played buy sally field was bad as well, why did she have black hair, all the time aunt may has white/ gray hair it's in all the comics. not only that but at the end of the movie she was annoying saying why ten time's to andrew garfield as to why he wasn't with gwen stacy. i couldn't beleive how upsetting this movie was it's like the writers and director didn't even put effort into it. if i had a say in the movie it would of been ten times better.
Durf - 8/7/2012, 5:50 PM
@tea: So it did make main and then got booted? lol. I would rather have boobs anyway... :P
TheAmazingSpidey63 - 8/7/2012, 6:45 PM
Boobs? Or Main? Boobs? Or Main? Boobs? Or Main?................

Yep. Boobs take it all. :P
MarsivNayr - 8/8/2012, 8:12 AM
Yeah I gotta say that all the cuts they made (probably due to Sony Executives) really put a dent in the film; and I hope they are addressed in the DVD/Blu Release as deleted scenes.

Connors family not being there is crazy (they are even alluded to and talked about by Connors in the ASM video game).

But the biggest mistake they made (which covers a lot of big complaints) is that they focused on making a trilogy, rather than a single cohesive film. Most everything they left in the air was seemingly intentional, and didn't help to create what couldv'e been the best Spider-man Film to Date.

Oh and the Lizard looked fine, but it WAS a bit of a slap in the face everytime his labcoat got ripped off.

Everything was there to make something extraordinary, but thanks to Sony (again...) and a bad "trilogy" idea....

8/10
MarsivNayr - 8/8/2012, 8:20 AM
IMO, Captain America: TFA and Iron Man hold best comicbook origin films.

It sucks that this film (at least the film we recieved from those hack sony execs, so to speak) made me once again want Spidey to be reverted back to Marvel Studios. Even though I'm a Spidey guy at heart, I have to acknowledge that this didn't QUITE live up to expectations. It was filled with a lot of great and amazing things rather than being great and amazing as a whole.
Durf - 8/9/2012, 12:05 AM

@notmuchtotellreally: mature. The reason your previous comments were deleted had nothing to do with your opinion. That was fine. It was the personal jab at me at the end that got them deleted. I felt your opinions were at least valid until you added your jab at the end. If you disagree with my opinions, fine. Just state your opinion and move on. Don't attack mine.

There were others, such as aztecRaingod, who disagreed and said why, but they were respectful. I welcome that, it provides good discussion.

Also, if you simply would have asked why I deleted them I would have just explained and we could have discussed it in a civil manner, and put it to rest. Instead you chose to call my review "bullshit" and me "shit." Again, how mature of you.


But thank you for proving how mature you are and how awesome you are...

CaptainAmerica31 - 8/9/2012, 12:14 PM
I agree on some points I think TASM was better than 1 and 3 could have been better but I was very pleased with the end results. BB IM and TASM have the best Orgins becasue they have fleshed out stories good actors and show us better reasons as to why the hero becomes the hero. The lizard was the weakest point in the film, they really could have made the family appear and be prominent to make him more tragic like he should be. The crane scene was awesome it really displayed Spideys commitment and I felt like I was actually watching Spidey( the one from comics and cartoons) on screen. Overall it was a great orgin movie but it came too soon and if this was the first of its kind then it would be precieved much better then it is now Andrew Garfield is probably on bale and downey's level of acting in a CBM I think he put on one of the best performances in a CBM along with bale and RDJ.
CaptainAmerica31 - 8/9/2012, 12:21 PM
I think the sequel will be the best Spidey film yet and has the right ingredients too be one of the best CBMs
Durf - 8/9/2012, 1:20 PM
@notmuchtotellreally: lol, my mistake. No harm done then. Sarcasm usually is natural for me, but apparently not here. I apologize for the misunderstanding. If you do write a review, I will provide plenty of sarcasm and tits for your review. :)

@tea: lol, cheeky

@31: Thank you for your comments. I feel where you are coming from, but I still hate the crane scene. lol
Durf - 8/9/2012, 1:24 PM
@batz: thanks bud

@notmuchtotellreally: also, I enjoy comic relief and try to do it myself. So I understand. Your comic relief will always be welcome on my articles, especailly now that I know that that's what you do. :)
Durf - 8/9/2012, 3:32 PM
lol, no problem @notmuch

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