Editor’s note: We all love movies, but rather than ask a syndicated columnist who has never visited our beautiful High Desert, we commissioned our own local movie critic: Nolan P. Smith to review films and give us a local perspective. Enjoy!
By Nolan P. Smith
High Desert Daily
(Victor Valley)– “I hate sequels.”
That is what I always hear from friends, acquaintances and random strangers. But why? Sequels have the opportunity to ramp up the quality since the first film. They can learn and adapt from mistakes and build off of the character development set forth in the initial film. So, with the Amazing Spider-Man 2, we get the first sequel to the spider-reboot: does it outshine its predecessor, or does it get tangled up in its own web?
Directed by Marc Webb, who also directed the first Amazing Spider-Man, the film does build off the original nicely. It takes us back into the world of Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield), a geeky high school kid who was bitten by a radioactive spider and became Spider-Man. High school is coming to an end, as Peter’s life has been blossoming with his girlfriend, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). But, of course, life is never easy for Parker, and this time is no different.
Not only do we see the introduction of a few villains, such as Electro (Jamie Foxx) and the Rhino (Paul Giamatti). We also get the introduction to Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan), son of Norman Osborn and old childhood friend of Peter. Plus, the film sheds some light on the mystery behind Peter’s parents, and how it all ties to Osborn, Oscorp and a certain spider.
Now, for the good: the action scenes were top notch. Electro felt like a legitimate comic book threat during the clashes. Sure, it’s not the Electro known from the comics, but it was still entertaining. Another plus is the comedic tone added to Parker when he suits up as Spider-Man: the jokes were flying all throughout the movie, just as they should be. A very classic feel for the character can be seen with Spider-Man hijinks.
Now, for the bad, and for me, that comes with the dialogue. Not the Spider-Man dialogue, but the Peter Parker dialogue. The conversations between Peter and Harry were cringe worthy and a bit awkward, and the ones with Gwen felt too unnatural, like you would never overhear someone talking like that in real life.
The end result, for me, was a far more entertaining film than the original. The action felt like it was stepped up, the danger element was more severe, and the characters developed more and more, as we move toward film #3. If you haven’t seen it, you owe it to yourself to see the Amazing Spider-Man 2: it’s a great popcorn action flick.