An electrifying and more sentimental vibe pulses through this sequel of the 2012 Spidey reboot. It is a little long and still mildly overrun with too many storylines but on the whole it’s a much better offering than the first and the central love story of Peter and Gwen is adorable and well done.
Marc Webb returns to direct a web slinging action once again with Peter Parker’s Spider-man, who is now more of a constant attraction around NYC as he also tries continuing his romance with Gwen Stacy in between. He comes up against a rise of a new shocking villain (pun intended) and also a friend from the past could provide another level of danger in his topsy turvy world.
The introduction of Paul Giamatti’s hammy Russian criminal is a stitch on that could have just been saved for his meatier role in the third movie and the Green Goblin too feels like another slice of baddie pie that doesn’t have much interesting filling. I don’t know what that analogy was all about but stick with me. It’s pretty much a perfect serving with the central villain of Jamie Foxx’s Electro/Max as he gets more backstory than the others and an invisible character like his helps give us time to empathise with him and actually feel sorry for him as he trots about being a nobody, that is until Spider-man comes along and provides Max with a new sense of infatuation inevitability leading to him starting to despise the popular hero and become his opponent. In similarity to ‘Spider-Man 3′ in Sam Raimi’s days there’s a problem of too many cooks syndrome with the focus pulling away from Electro to go to Harry Osborn or to go from Parker and Stacy to Parker and a journey of discovery. It feels a little scattershot at times with a lot going on, it all looks impressive but it starts to feel like its substance is falling apart as we swing from one thing to another.
One loud applausable trait can be found in the sweet relationship of Stone and Garfield’s pairing. It’s a romantic and gentle touch that runs nicely underneath the bursts of explosive action, which makes the climactic scene even more of a emotionally beautiful moment as Gwen and Peter work together to try and take down ol’ Electro.
I enjoyed the numerous uses of slow motion which looked suitably epic on the huge IMAX screen and help make Spider-man look more cool even in his spandex and bug eyes. The wonderful touch of a slingshot of web becoming an image of a hand was a lovely thing, so too was the constant wise-cracking of our guy in red and blue as he jokes around even in terrifying situations. The post Spidey introduction of Richard and Mary Parker’s demise is a nice subplot to set up Peter’s quest into why they left but it didn’t add overly much to the main plot which was really about Peter still trying to juggle his hero duties with the love of Gwen.
The soundtrack is pretty cool, especially with hard hitting dubstep blasting every time a wave of electric energy escaped from Electro’s body. A modern and electrifying feel to mirror his character, even if it did make it come across like Skrillex was invading the cinema.
A movie that rises and falls coinciding with the ups and downs of the action and then no action scenes. It felt like there were three or four climactic moments in the movie making the actual last one an emotional climax if nothing else. Though it is a better film than the first, with a balanced look at the best villain and also with the connection between Peter and Gwen; though the sticky web does break in places with a lot going on a lot of the time making it nearly become a mess.