Accent on Movies: Not-so-amazing 'Spiderman'Too often, the term “reboot” gets thrown around in the film industry. There are constant rumors of every struggling movie franchise undergoing a reboot. So when news broke that original Spider-Man trilogy director Sam Raimi was leaving the fourth film, the announcement of a reboot was no surprise.
By: Tim Albrecht, Grand Forks Herald
Too often, the term “reboot” gets thrown around in the film industry. There are constant rumors of every struggling movie franchise undergoing a reboot. So when news broke that original Spider-Man trilogy director Sam Raimi was leaving the fourth film, the announcement of a reboot was no surprise.
Many people, me included, were skeptical of re-doing a story that was only 10 years old.
Despite my qualms with the Amazing Spider-Man, it’s still an enjoyable movie. The key is looking at it as an entirely new film.
The tone in the new series is darker. New York has a grittier feel and each character is edgier than the original Spider-Man films.
The film does do away with one major aspect of the Ultimate Comics’ Spider-Man: Peter Parker is far less nerdy.The biggest change, via comics versus the previous trilogy, is Peter’s decision to reveal his identity to Gwen, played by Emma Stone. In the Ultimate Comics universe, Gwen knew Peter’s secret identity, but in the original Amazing Spider-Man book, she never found out. I have a feeling the director did this to provide more emotional power to future events.Andrew Garfield is the perfect fit for Spidey. He has a dry sense of humor that suits the character and a wiry look that should be associated with Spider-Man. I always felt Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man didn’t work. His version was first too big and a little too nerdy.
NYPD head George Stacy is played by Denis Leary, which was probably the biggest surprise of the film as his acting really fleshed out the character. He also discovers Peter’s identity in the movie which stayed true to the comic.
My only major problem with this film was director Marc Webb’s failed attempt at giving Spider-Man the signature voice we all know and love. Peter is well-known for witty banter as he battles the bad guys. Despite Garfield being the perfect candidate for this, the one-liners often fell flat. The previous trilogy had this same problem as most of Peter’s fighting lines came across as cheesy, but they still did a better job than the current film.
But there’s still plenty of nerdy goodness throughout, including a nod to the wrestler Spider-Man fights in the comic, the inspiration for his costume. Also, Stan Lee makes his customary cameo.
Comparing the original and new movies is a little ridiculous, as in comic book land superheroes get new origin stories all the time. A new take on an age-old story can be a good thing, and it’s happening in film all the time.
Amazing Spider-Man has plenty going for it as an average movie experience, but it never quite reaches “amazing.” I liked quite a few of the differences, but the overall feel was just too gritty and Spider-Man isn’t that. Hopefully, the sequels will provide a little more to send this trilogy to the heights of the original.