When is rebooting a franchise too soon? That is what I find myself asking while watching The Amazing Spider-Man. Released ten years since Sam Rami did the rounds before dropping the ball with the unwatchable Spider-Man 3, it stars Andrew Garfield as our friendly neighborhood web slinger. Directed by Marc Webb (500 Days of Summer), the story mainly focuses Peter Parker’s school days and his mission to find the truth about his parents. So onward we go, back to the origin story, witch may bother the audience members who still remember the original back in 2002. However this is a fresh start and with all the success Marvel are having lately, now seem as good as time as any.
This version features a story more faithful to the comics with great central performance by Garfield. Rather being portrayed as just geek, Garfield plays Peter as an outsider of the social circles of school. Conveying a more complex character out of Peter Parker that is true to most teenagers, and he nails it as someone who is a loaner. In order to find himself, the so far unexplored, search to find out about his parents makes sense. The appropriately named Webb, is at his best when dealing with Peters life at school and home. Whether he is getting to grips with his new spider like powers or just asking his high school crush Gwen Stacy (the always charming Emma Stone) out on a date, the film is at it’s most enjoyable. Stone is great as the affable Gwen Stacy, bringing her whit and magnetism to the role and the two together have great chemistry. This leaves the action with the new villain The Lizard, a tad too much for the story as a whole. Following the clues left by his parents, he meets scientist Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans down playing his Welsh accent) who experiments with a serum to regrow limbs only to test it out himself transforming him into Jekll and Hyde type creature. Although this ties in well enough with Peter’s story, having another character arc slows the pace down. Having a running time 136 minutes, it could shaved 20 off and deal mainly with Spider-Man and his journey to find purpose in life. However, we have a main antagonist and Ifans does it perfectly well.
The rest of the cast are great also. Denis Leary as the police captain who is annoyed by Spider-Man getting in his way, who is also happens to be Gwen’s father. Sally Field plays the head strong Aunt May and the real inspired casting choice to cast Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben who is perfect in that role in every way. This is a perfectly solid blockbuster with everyones favorite wall crawler back to wise cracking form (“Oh no! You have found my weakness, small knives!”), although guilty of few cheesy moments (blue collar works come to Spider-Man’s aid in his hour of need) it seems a reboot wasn’t such a bad thing after all..