Thursday, 22 May 2014

Hello Everyone & Amazing Spider-Man 2 Review

As you may know, from that little gadget thing, over there, to the left, Jan is married, to some weird, tall fella called Ian...

Well... hi there, I'm Ian! From time to time, I will be guest posting on here, and no doubt, Jan will guest post on my blog.

For my first, guest post here on Merlin's Cove, I thought I would share with you my Amazing Spider-Man 2 review... Enjoy! I nearly forgot, before I get to the review, I should mention, I start each of my posts with Allons-y! I realise not everyone will get this reference, Jan does, that is why I do it.



After the hugely successful rebooting of the Spider-Man franchise with, The Amazing Spider-Man, the bar for the inevitable sequel was set very high, lets see how ASM2 lives up to it... Allons-y!




Disney, at present, do not own the rights to Spider-Man, meaning, he cannot turn up in the Avengers, which is a shame, that would be so cool... This inability to crossover means, the team behind ASM2 have to set up their own spidey-verse. Therein lies one of my biggest issues with ASM2, it feels more like a set up, a two and a half hour pre-credit sequence if you will, rather than a movie in it's own right.

Multiple aspects of ASM2 add to the feeling that this is purely a filler... a means to get number 3, and, the Sinister Six film made. For example, Harry Osborne, exiled heir to the Oscorp empire, returns half hour into the film because his father is dying. He's told, he too has the condition that killed his father and, also learns, from some unexplained piece of technology that is brought to life by pricking/shocking? Harry that Spidey's blood could cure him. Cue, brief moment of Harry asking Spidey for blood, Spidey telling him to wait, for safety reasons, Harry going all Anakin Skywalker, letting Electro out, having brief fight with Spidey, getting locked up and setting up plot for future films. To me, this aspect of the film feels, unnecessary. Don't get me wrong, I personally prefer this Goblin to the Sam Raimi version, however, I think the Goblin story could have waited until the next film, or the Sinister Six film. Despite my reservations about the Harry/Goblin involvement in ASM2, Dane DeHaan does quite a solid job as Harry, and, in my opinion surpasses Willem Dafoe's Goblin...we won't mention James Franco's Goblin (it's just dawned on me, how rude that sounds), that was just terrible, although, that wasn't down to Franco, you can only work with what you're given after all.

Aleksei Sytsevich/Rhino, is, in my opinion, the same as the Goblin situation in this. In total, Aleksei/Rhino is not in the movie for more than 10 minutes. There is a couple of minutes at the start before he gets his Rhino garb, then, a couple of minutes at the end. Now, either the makers have gone for some record for, shortest supervillian screen time ever, or, as I suspect is the case, they are setting up another film. I'll tell you how short it is, it was so short, Jan didn't notice that he was played by Paul Giamatti.

The only, future character set up, which I'm assuming is a future character set up, that didn't feel too forced, or, over the top, is Felicia Hardy. Now, I'm assuming she is Felicia Hardy, she doesn't reveal her surname as far as I am aware, however, something about the way they get Harry asking her name, and, her knowing things she probably shouldn't make me wonder, will we be seeing Black Cat soon?

Someone who probably won't be making another apperance in the Spidey series is, Electro. Now, you would think that the story of how, the meek, mild mannered, Oscorp worker, Max Dillon turns into a murderous, Emperor Palpatine, Smurf hybrid, would get a resonable amount of explanation... you would be wrong. You get a sequence showing him having a workplace accident, that, would make hardened Health & Safety Executive's run out of forms, however, the only explanation for his new found rage is a throwaway line, in which, he mentions a feeling of anger. Either, we are to assume that the shocks he received turned him into a wrong'un, or, as I am guessing is the case due to his behaviour as Max, he suffered from some grandiose delusional disorders.

I realise, the past few paragraphs will lead you to arrive at the conclusion that I didn't like the film. Far from it, I very much enjoyed it. Andrew Garfield, again, makes both a brilliant Peter and Spidey. He brings a likability to the role of Peter, you find yourself wanting him to succeed, wanting him to win, wanting things to go well with Gwen, all these things, if I'm honest I struggled with, with the Raimi films. In his role as Spidey, he brings all the aspects he does to Parker and, he also brings a wise cracking, quick witted, cheeky nature.

Emma Stone, as was with the first film is a perfect on screen match for Garfield. She is contantly putting Parker/Spidey in his place, and, her comic timing is right on the money. For any fans of the Gwen character, there is an incident, towards the end, that will infuriate you, as it did Jan and myself. 

The action sequences in ASM2 are, in my opinion, the best of all the Spidey films to date. I know some people have complained about the amount of greenscreen work, however, I disagree. All the action is filmed extremely well, the greenscreen and CGI, whilst in abundance, work well and is blended relatively seamlessly with the physical elements. Electro ran the risk of looking naff (think Scorpion King, in The Mummy 2) however. he was done with tremendous skill, and, looked quite believable, well, as believable as a person made from electricity can.

Overall, the film is an enjoyable watch, and, it contains all the necessary elements to be a good superhero movie, however, it does stumble sometimes along the way.

Thanks for stopping by, I do hope you enjoyed yourself.

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