An Electrifying Return Of Your Friendly Neighbourhood Web-Slinger?
This is our first look at Marc Webb’s Amazing Spider-Man 2 from Sony Pictures.
The film picks up from the 2012 film which pulled in $750m+ at the global box office – a very solid success and proved audiences were still hungry for more Spidey. The reception to the film was positive to mixed and didn’t really inspire the same affection as the original Sam Raimi / Tobey Maguire films but achieved what Sony needed.
For the record here are the unadjusted global grosses from the Raimi trilogy: Spider-Man $821.7m, Spider-Man 2 $783.8m & Spider-Man 3 $890.9m. Pretty huge right and all the more impressive seeing as none of them benefited from 3D prices.
Some wondered why Sony rebooted so fast. It’s simple; as long as Sony keeps making Spider-Man films they retain the rights to the property. Which as you can imagine must a be a great source of frustration for Disney / Marvel. It’s the same deal with Fox and X-Men and Fantastic Four and explains why both are in perpetual development / production.
And Sony really does need to keep making Spidey films because the studio is desperate for major franchises. Tentpoles are what keep the major studios alive and Sony (under its main Columbia Pictures banner) really only has two viable franchises: Spider-Man and James Bond.
And one of them is owned by Marvel and the other by EON & MGM.
That’s not good.
Not when your competition boasts many outright owned franchises and many production units each with their own IP. And it’s not easy to start new franchises either; you only have to look at this summer where Sony’s After Earth and White House Down both under-performed.
So while the speedy reboot might frustrate it does make sound business sense.
As a long time Spidey fan I had mixed feelings towards this reboot. I loved the first two Raimi films and Spider-Man 2 in particular is one of the finest comic book movies ever and can stand alongside the likes of The Dark Knight and The Avengers. There is a lot of ridiculous retconned internet hate aimed at the Raimi films these days but to me those first two are spectacular and perfect marriage of action, adventure, heart and comedy.
I was sceptical at first about the new series. Making a movie to keep intellectual property rights is not the best reason to create art. But then I saw (500) Days Of Summer from Marc Webb and I was blown away by how good it was. A great mix of humour and pathos. And then seeing Andrew Garfield in The Social Network convinced me he was the right man for the job (I was already sold on Emma Stone!).
The design of the suit (yellow eyes!?) and the Lizard put me off but the creative team was so appealing I was fully on board and I had high hopes. Alas the actual film only had a few of the touches that made Marc Webb’s first film so good and Garfield while decent had a strange stoner, hipster vibe which put me off. Aside from some glaring plot-holes, the villain also became less interesting as the film went on and the final mystery sting didn’t really have the impact they were hoping for.
In its defence it was still very solid and well made with great FX, a very solid cast and some witty moment. Ultimately I liked it, but it just didn’t grab me in the same was as the Raimi movies.
And so now on to the sequel.
I like this trailer a lot.
It gives us our first real looks at Electro played by Sony’s new golden boy Jamie Foxx (seriously Django Unchained, White House Down and ASM2 all back-to-back), Paul Giamatti as Rhino and Dane DeHaan as Harry Osbourne.
I’m looking forward to the film. This is a fresh new batch of villains that we haven’t yet seen on-screen, the cast is exciting and the new costume is way better. It’s an exciting tease and I think Webb has gained confidence which will hopefully mean more memorable moments.
2014 will be a Marvel fan fest with Fox’s mega budget X-Men: Days of Future Past, Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy plus Disney Animation’s Big Hero 6. It’s going to be a very competitive frame (when is it not?) but Amazing Spider-Man 2 looks like it could be a big success.
Having said that, I am little worried with the number of villains (and maybe secret villains yet to be revealed – note the Vulture and Doc Ock easter eggs!) .
We heard about the rumours of the Sinister Six and I like that Sony have set out a 4 film plan running through to 2018 which should allow them to introduce all 6 villains in an organic manner. But we all remember the last time a Spidey film had too many villains and it unfortunately derailed a previously excellent series.
If they can balance out the characters and give each of them enough time to be fleshed out without compromising Peter and Gwen then I’ll be happy. I hope we also get more of the wise cracking and humour of the comic book version.
P.S. Note the Sony logo at start – I haven’t seen that before in a trailer and makes me wonder if Sony is planning to use its own brand more than the Columbia one?
Here’s the official synopsis:
“We’ve always known that Spider-Man’s most important battle has been within himself, the struggle between the ordinary obligations of Peter Parker and the extraordinary responsibilities of Spider-Man. But in ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2,’ Peter Parker finds that a greater conflict lies ahead.
It’s great to be Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield). For Peter Parker, there’s no feeling quite like swinging between skyscrapers, embracing being the hero, and spending time with Gwen (Emma Stone). But being Spider-Man comes at a price: only Spider-Man can protect his fellow New Yorkers from the formidable villains that threaten the city. With the emergence of Electro (Jamie Foxx), Peter must confront a foe far more powerful than he. And as his old friend, Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan), returns, Peter comes to realize that all of his enemies have one thing in common: OsCorp.”
Sony’s Amazing Spider-Man 2 hits cinemas on April 18, 2014 in the UK and May 2, 2014 in the US.
So what do you think of the trailer?
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