It’s only been a decade since the Spiderman hit the big screens for the first of a three installment run, but now we are seeing a “reboot” of the superhero legend. Like or love the idea of a movie being reshot quite so soon, few that have seen the movie will disagree, it was for once a perfectly good choice.
Taking the helm as Peter Parker/Spiderman is Social Network star Andrew Garfield, who takes a similar but slightly different approach to the role that Tobey McGuire made his own. While the character of Mary-Jane is abandoned in favour of feisty Gwen Stacy played by Emma Stone.
The story behind The Amazing Spiderman to a point is more methodical, firstly it focuses on the characters introducing them to the audience and endearing them to us, before it handles the whole approach of Peter becoming affected by a contaminated spider that ultimately allows him to transform into Spiderman. From here we have a well plotted out tale of discovery, as Peter slowly discovers his new abilities one by one. As a result you have the character experimenting more than before, what happens if I do this, how does this work etc. Combine this with the at times hysterical disasters that occur when you do simple things like brushing your teeth.
Where the movie falls down however is the progression from this point onwards, Peter slowly evolves into Spiderman, and covers quite well the transformation. Peter starts for reasons revealed in the movie tackling street crime, with varying results, but his first encounter with something rather unusual, in this case the Lizardman, his reactions seem rather relaxed. From handling street crime he seems remarkably relaxed with this new and unknown entity. Rather pleasingly, this is the only flaw that The Amazing Spiderman has, the rest is well thought out, and incredibly rounded.
Garfield is excellent as the slightly nerdy, incredibly dysfunctional (but with a function) teen who really just wants to pursue a carrier in photography. He is a very reactionary individual who truly convinces the audience that he is going through the incredible transformation that will make him Spiderman. Emma Stone is very well cast too, delivering another solid performance to add to her growing impressive resume. There is a lot of incredible support Sally Field is the foxiest Aunt May ever, with a solid performance by the ever-reliable Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben. Campbell Scott, Embeth Davidtz, Dennis Leary, and Rhys Ifans all bring the goods too. There are also some nice cameos from C. Thomas Howell and Stan Lee.
Special effects and a rocking score that includes Coldplay are the icing on the cake for this the best ever Spiderman adaptation ever. While it might not be as bang on to the original Stan Lee story, it puts some nice new spins on the classic tale of nerd made good, by the product of something possibly evil. In a year filled with superhero action, The Amazing Spiderman is by far the best for an all-round feel good piece of celluloid entertainment.