I hate this movie.
I should elaborate. Amazing Spider-Man is a terrible movie. Just awful in so many ways. But with just enough competence that you know they could have made a decent movie if they’d just tried a little harder. That’s the most disappointing part. If it were bad because everyone involved was awful, well, that’s annoying, but it’s expected. This though. This feels like a bunch of talented people all got together and screwed up in their own special way. It’s a tapestry of poor choices.
The biggest issue is obviously the one we’ve known about for years. They just HAD to give us another origin story. No one wants to see that. All our favorite super hero movies are sequels. X-Men 2, Spider-Man 2, The Avengers, The Dark Knight. Because we can devote the entire movie to an awesome story. We’re not spending half of it explaining where this dude came from. But they’re a necessary evil. Tim Burton can get away with jumping right into Batman’s story, because everyone knows who Batman is, but movies like Iron Man or Captain America are introducing a character that the average non comic book nerd might not know. But, wait, we do know Spider-Man. We just saw his origin story ten goddamn years ago. We don’t need to spend another movie explaining who this dude is. But that’s what we got.
And boy did we get it. The Raimi Spider-Man was tough, with literally half the movie dedicated to the origin story. But at least Peter gets bit early on. Only a few minutes into the movie, and Peter has a Spider bite. This movie just drags and drags and drags. It had to be close to forty minutes in before he got bit. And then another thirty before the actual Spider-Man part started. The movie would be more accurately titled “Amazing Floppy Haired Hipster Kid” since that’s what we spend most of our time watching. And with all that time wasted, the rest of the movie is uncomfortably rushed. Spider-Man fights the lizard a couple times, some stuff happens, and suddenly it’s over. Incredibly disappointing.
The acting on the other hand, pretty alright. Andrew Garfield puts in a solid performance. There are a number of problems with the character, but I think it’s in the writing, not in his performance. Emma Stone continues to be adorable and awesome, easily the best part of the movie. Rhys Ifans is great as Curt Connors. Completely believable as a person so angry at the loss of his arm that he’s willing to ignore all logic to fix it. Things get terrible when he becomes the lizard, but that’s a different problem. And Martin Sheen is the best Uncle Ben ever (sorry Cliff Robertson). On the flipside, Sally Field as Aunt May is useless. Just stands there, does nothing. And Dennis Leary pretty much just yells. That’s his entire character. Just yelling a lot.
As for the Lizard, well, that’s a mess. The effects look terrible, he never seems to have any real weight to him. And the model is ridiculous. The Lizard needs a snout. Without one he’s just stupid looking. Then he’s talking all the time, but he has no lips, so he just looks like an animated character with the mouth opening and closing sort of lining up with what he’s saying. It just comes off as amateurish. He doesn’t feel threatening, he doesn’t feel real. Wilem Dafoe in that ridiculous mask is so much more impressive than this obviously much more expensive work. What a waste.
But the central problem is that I just don’t care. From the outside, it looks like the same Spider-Man that we love. But everything’s been changed just slightly, bit by bit, until he’s an unpleasant doppleganger of himself. Uncle Ben never gives Peter the “with great power comes great responsibility speech” so he takes forever to actually become a hero. Spends a big chunk of the movie as a jackass vigilante. That’s not what I want to see. Peter Parker never really feels like a nerd. Sure, he gets beat up by Flash, but he’s also, you know, Andrew Garfield. He’s an attractive guy with the cool clothes and the cool hobby and the skateboard. You can understand why he’s so whiny about his life. There’s all this nonsense with his parents, and Curt Connors might be involved, and Oscorp is evil. It needlessly complicates the story, and it’s already ridiculously complex. It all adds up to make what should be an exciting superhero story just painfully slow and boring. Just get to the Spider-Man part, and have him fight. I don’t need this.
More spoilery complaints after the jump.
First off, we start with little Peter Parker. He’s playing hide and seek with his dad when they find a break in and everything goes crazy. His parents hustle him off to Uncle Ben and Aunt May’s and then disappear into the nothing. Before we go we see they were doing some sort of science on spiders. That’s bullshit. It was stupid when the Hulk’s dad was responsible for making The Hulk, so why would we think that Spider-Man’s dad being responsible for making Spider-Man wasn’t stupid. Idiots.
It should be noted that young Peter Parker is a terrible hide and seek player. He’s distracted by everything in sight. Ooh, glasses! Ooh, pictures! Ooh, a hat! Eyes on the ball, kid. You gotta find your dad.
Peter’s dad has a secret file that seems to be endangering the family. So they grab the file, and then run away, presumably to keep Peter from being targeted. But they leave the file with him. So, damn, he’s just going to be targeted anyway. Jerks.
They try really hard to convince us Peter’s a nerd. It seems like a girl is asking him out, but she’s just asking him to take a picture of her girlfriend’s car. But that just seems more like she’s a stupid girl than he’s a nerd. He’s riding a skateboard around a high school for gods sakes. That’s not what nerds do. That’s rebellious anti-authority shit.
Flash beats the shit out of Peter. I mean, first of all, he’s got a kid upside down, and he’s mashing the kid’s face in his food. While a circle of other kids watches. When Peter tries to stop it, Flash hits Peter hard enough to knock him down, then kicks him in the ribs. This is at a high school. A high school with apparently no authority figures.
Getting beat up by Flash seems like a bad thing, but it gets Gwen Stacy to pay attention to him. I guess I wouldn’t mind getting beaten up if it meant Emma Stone would show interest in me. Still, she doesn’t suggest telling anyone in authority about the assault he just suffered. She thinks he should go to the nurse, because he might have a concussion, but doesn’t think being hit so hard you might have a concussion is worth telling anyone about. Just kids being kids.
Peter gets home, and Aunt May accepts his “fell off a skateboard” excuse, even though the only way it’s believeable is if he followed “I fell off my skateboard” with “Into a fist.”
At this point we haven’t really established that Peter is smart. No bits of him being smart in school, or talking about science or anything. So, how do we establish that? He can fix an air conditioner. Seriously. He takes a look at the air conditioner and immediately knows how to fix it. Peter’s usually been portrayed as a more theoretical science guy. But I guess he could know about HVAC too. Why not?
Peter finds his dad’s secret briefcase. You think you’d hide that, but it’s just chilling in the basement.
In the briefcase is a picture of Peter’s dad and Curt Connors. Peter asks Uncle Ben who it is, and he responds in the most suspicious way ever. “That’s some guy that your dad knows, probably”. Yeah, they got their picture taken together. I figured they probably knew each other.
Peter finds his dad’s glasses. And immediately takes out his contacts and puts the glasses. Because, you know, all glasses are the same, so his dad’s and his are just the same. Obviously.
The case has a secret compartment. But it takes like five seconds to find it. What good is that? The secret folder is sliding around all over the place. Obviously there’s a secret compartment if I’ve opened everything and I can still hear something inside moving. It’s terribly unsecret.
After Ben tells Peter what Curt Connors name is, he searches for him on Bing. Bing? Who the fuck uses Bing?
At this point Peter has still not been bitten by a Spider. Let’s just take note. Still not bitten by a spider. Still no Spider powers. It’s called Spider-Man, right? I didn’t walk into “Kid With Abandonment Issues” by accident, right?
Oscorp has terrible security. Peter just walks in, grabs someone’s badge, and then gets free reign of the most advanced laboratories in the world. Doesn’t even have to show id.
Oh, no. Gwen Stacy is in charge of the group of interns that he’s impersonating. Peter better hide in the background and not draw attention to himself and, oh, no, he’s walking right up and answering Curt’s questions. That’s good planning.
At this point Gwen knows that Peter has entered the building under false pretenses. She should really call security. But at the very least, should probably pay attention to him. But no, he just wanders away. She doesn’t really notice. She should not be given any position of authority.
Peter finally finds a room of spiders. Thank god. It’s been about a million hours so far.
Oh, on the door of the room, there’s this ridiculous touchscreen lock, that serves no purpose but looking weird. It’s no more secure than a normal lock. In fact, it’s less secure. Peter is totally able to copy the entry code in a second. Why is that there?
Let’s recap real quick. Peter’s in a building he shouldn’t be in, under a name that isn’t his, separated from the group that he’s pretending to be a part of, in a room that he had to break into. There’s like ten reasons he could be arrested here. Does he keep a low profile? No, he starts touching everything. The hell, man? That’s a bad plan.
So, originally, the story was that Peter Parker was bitten by a spider exposed to radiation. That’s a dumb story. In the Raimi movies, he was bitten by a spider full of retroviruses. That’s slightly more reasonable. It’s not entirely clear why the spider would have retroviruses in his venom, or in his body at all, since you probably would have wanted to retrovirus the eggs. Or the, you know, spider sperm (what do they use? I don’t know spiders). But it’s a step in the right direction. This movie though, makes the bold plan of not explaining it at all. It’s implied to be the same thing that Dr. Connors is working on. But we find out later that it’s never worked. So, how did they make the spiders? And why are the spiders full of retrovirus. Also, the spiders in this lab seem to be designed to make webs. Why would they give Peter all the powers but the power to make webs. It’s completely backwards.
Peter gets bit. Fucking finally. He’s on a subway train, when he accidentally gets in a fight with a bunch of sketchy looking fellows. He keeps getting stuck to things because of his spider stickyness. And we run into that same issue that we have with all Spider-Man stickyness. How does he turn it on and off? His hand gets stuck to a pole. But he can some how slide his hand up and down the pole? How does that work? Why can’t he just let go? If he can slide, he’s not stuck to it. Stupid.
When he wakes up the next morning, he tears the hell out of his room. I actually like that. If you’re suddenly given a the strength to lift a car, you might not be able to open a door without damaging it. That’s one of those moments of cleverness that makes the rest of the movie so damn disappointing.
Instead of beating the hell out of Flash, Peter just embarrasses him by being better at basketball. I always thought Peter’s choice of hitting Flash when he clearly had Flash outclassed in the first Spider-Man movie was dumb. This was a more clever outcome. He still gets in trouble, though. This is the dumbest school ever. The kid that puts out a Sonny Corleone level beating gets ignored, and the smartest kid in school gets in trouble for standing up for himself. Ridiculous. Even Uncle Ben is angry at him. “You stood up for yourself. I’m disappointed.” Makes no sense. I mean, we get it. He’s got super powers. He shouldn’t be screwing with regular people. But Uncle Ben doesn’t know that.
Before Uncle Ben leaves he tells Peter to pick up his Aunt May. And don’t forget! Gee, I wonder what’s going to happen here.
There’s a way, way too long sequence when Peter is skating around an empty warehouse. It’s obnoxious. Eventually he starts using Spider powers, but still, it’s not as fun as they clearly think it is.
Then Pete visits Curt Connors. It should be noted that at this point it’s blatantly obvious that Peter’s parents disappeared to keep this secret file hidden. But Peter’s immediately like “Hey, here’s some secret info.” Doesn’t stop to think “Hey, maybe there’s a reason they hid this.” Just hands it over.
Eventually Pete makes it home. And, oh no, he forgot to pick up his Aunt. They get in a fight and he storms off. To buy milk. Super rebellious.
The guy at the store won’t let him buy milk, because he’s two cents short. So when the next guy snags some money from the register, Peter doesn’t stop him. This has gone really downhill. The whole wrestling subplot, where he foolishly uses this great power selfishly has been lost. Now it’s just “Dude wouldn’t sell me milk.” That’s sad.
Uncle Ben really only has himself to blame. In the comic his house was invaded. In the first movie, his car was being stolen. In this one, the criminal trips and drops his gun, and Ben tries to take it. That’s dumb. With great power comes great responsibility. But you don’t have great power. You have low to moderate power. Low to moderate responsibility does not include wrestling with a criminal for a deadly weapon when he’s not endangering anyone. Your life is worth substantially more than the twenties from a Bodega’s cash register.
The cops show up to show the sketch of the murderer to Aunt May. I don’t know why. To torture her, I guess? Then Peter asks for the sketch. And despite the fact that that request makes no sense, the cop’s like, “Sure, why not.” Then to make it worse he adds “Oh, also, the guy had a star tattooed on his arm.” Why would you give that information out? The only way that information is useful is if you’re going to attempt to track him down. That’s the cop’s job. Not poofy haired teenager’s job.
So, predictably, Peter starts hunting criminals. He’s not trying to stop crime, or make the world a better place. He just wants to beat up the dude that killed his Uncle. But it’s a big city, and all the criminals look the same. So Spider-Man beats up a bunch of other people that look similar to him. But none of them have that star tattoo. So he keeps beating them up and evolving his costume. I’m not entirely sure what it’s made out of. He thinks badly of spandex, and then he suddenly has the suit. But it looks like it’s made of rubber, or something. I don’t get it.
Oh, and since the whole wrestling subplot is lost, there’s no reason for him to design a costume before he starts crime fighting. So rather than just having him come to that logical conclusion, they just have him fall into a wrestling arena to see a picture of a mask on the wall. You guys dropped the entire wrestling thing. He could come up with the idea of wearing a mask another way. You don’t have to just jam in wrestling now that it doesn’t mean anything. It’s just… whatever, it’s fine. He sees a wrestling poster, and that makes him wear a mask. That’s the most logical way to get from point A to B.
He’s back to mechanical shooters, because we don’t want to be the same as the other movies. But, he doesn’t even make the webbing. He just buys it. From Oscorp. He builds the shooters. But the webbing actually comes from those Spiders that bit him to start with. That’s lame. Ignoring the fact that if a cop really wanted to track down Spider-Man he could simply find out who was purchasing Spider-Web, it’s just dumb. I want Spider-Man to make the web. That’s how it’s supposed to work.
Evil Oscorp guy threatens to take away Dr. Connors research if he doesn’t start human testing on his arm regrowing serum. Dr. Connors refuses, so Evil Oscorp guy follows through on his promises. Also, he implies that maybe he killed Peter’s parents. Dr. Connors responds by injecting himself with the lizard stuff in the grossest manner possible. Right into his arm stump.
Peter gets invited to Gwen’s house, where he spends the entire dinner defending Spider-Man and insulting her dad. It’s a secret identity for a reason, Peter. Just be like, “You’re right, Captain Stacy. Fuck Spider-Man. Now I’m gonna go make out with your daughter.” No, he’s gotta defend Spider-Man. Like a moron. Bruce Wayne gets it. Keep that shit separate.
At this point Spider-Man hasn’t chosen to be a hero. He’s just hunting that one dude. But when he hears a bunch of sirens he decides to follow them. Why? I don’t… how are you trying to portray this character? He’d rather risk his life than make out with Gwen Stacy? Who is he supposed to be?
Curt Connors got all lizarded up, and is now trying to kill the evil Oscorp dude. But he’s kind of a jackass, and keeps knocking cars off the bridge. So Peter catches them. But there’s a whole line of them. Like eight of nine in a row. Caught hanging off the bridge. Which is a cool image. Until you realize that means that Spider-Man was, like, ten feet behind the lizard. Catching every car the lizard throws, instead of just stopping him.
The Lizard hits a car, and the alarm goes off. That means that someone saw a dangerous lizard monster coming, hopped out of the car to run away from it, but first decided to lock the doors and set the alarm.
Spider-Man can’t catch the lizard, because this one guy is complaining that his son is in one of the cars hanging off the bridge. So Spider-Man hops down there, and says, “Hey kid, get out of the car.” And the kid freaks out. Then the car explodes into flames. Why? I don’t know. The gas tank decides the scene should be more intense, so it springs a leak. And Spider-Man is again like “Hey kid, how about you climb out?” At this point I’m just like, leave him. If you’re so stupid you need someone else to tell you to climb away from fire, well, that’s just natural selection.
So Spider-Man saves the kid. And that’s when he’s clearly thinking “Hey, I could be a hero.” Except maybe he was already thinking it. He did come to the bridge without anything being in it for him. Not entirely sure what that’s about.
Peter goes to Curt Connors lab for help hunting the man sized lizard. Smartest damn kid in the world, doesn’t add together “man shaped lizard” and “man who wants to inject himself with lizard DNA”. Luckily Dr. Connors is super bad at lying about not being a giant lizard, so Peter puts it together. Also, that mouse they injected turned into a lizard mouse monster. That’s never a good sign.
So Peter goes to Captain Stacy with a crazy tale of a man who turned himself into a lizard. It’s super crazy, and no one would ever believe that. But luckily Peter has evidence. There’s a half lizard, half rat monster. That’s some compelling evidence and… he didn’t bring it with him. Seriously Pete? I’m seriously doubting you’re as much of a super genius as you imply.
Alright, so here’s another cool sequence. Spider-Man hops in sewer, and shoots webs down all the pipes. Then he sits at the center and waits for someone to hit one of the strands. That’s really clever. Like a Spider-Man. That’s awesome. It doesn’t work. He get’s ambushed and almost dies. But the image is good, right?
The lizard slices up Spider-Man’s chest. The scene where it happens it’s clearly straight down, but in later scenes the cuts are angled. I don’t know what that is. But what I find hilarious is that with three giant open wounds on his chest, the best place he can think to go is into New York’s sewage. I sure hope that spider bite gave you some awesome ass white blood cells, because you just dunked an open wound into the grossest thing ever.
Peter left his camera behind. His camera, that has his name on it. He used his camera, with his name on it. He’s wearing a costume, so that people don’t know who his is. But he’s lugging around a camera with his name on it. The hell?
Peter goes to Gwen’s to get cleaned up. Oh, right, she knows he’s Spider-Man. Forget to mention that. Because it’s stupid. See, if Gwen doesn’t know he’s Spider-Man, then when her dad dies, she blames Spider-Man. She hates Spider-Man, but loves Peter Parker. But they’re the same person. He loves her, wants to share everything with her, but he can’t because she thinks he’s a murdered. Creates that tension, leaves Peter Parker in that “Every moment of my life is right on the edge of falling apart” that we love. But she knows who Spider-Man is before her dad dies, all that gets cut off at the knees. She knows Peter would never kill her dad, all that tension is lost. She knows her boyfriend is a super hero, he doesn’t have to lie to her, she never gets in a situation where she gets thrown off a bridge, Spider-Man never breaks her neck trying to save her. Everyone lives happily ever after. Except for Uncle Ben. And I guess Mary Jane does whatever Mary Jane does when she’s not Peter Parker’s rebound girl.
Anyway, that’s dumb. But point is, Peter hops in her room to get cleaned up. She swabs at his wounds with a damp cloth once or twice, and then they start making out. Several problems here. One, giant bloody wounds. You’d really think he’d want that cleaned up before he started any making out. Two, giant bloody wounds that were in a sewer. Could really use some antiseptic before making out. Three, he was in the sewer. Why would she want to make out with that? We know he didn’t have time to clean up, there was still sewer on him when he came in the window. You got a girl that’s willing to make out a with a guy with bloody wounds and that smells like a sewer. Maybe you should wait for someone who’s a little more discerning.
There’s this weird scene where Curt Connors argues with a terrible voice over of himself. I’m not sure if it’s the Lizard arguing with him, or just a crazy part of his brain. It’s almost exactly like Wilem Dafoe talking to himself, except without the mirror or the mask to visualize. Just random sentences spoken while he sits there looking grumpy. Eventually, the voices decided they should kill Peter Parker. Thing is, that scene was terrible in the first movie. And they duplicated it almost exactly. They watched the first movie, ignored everything good, and decided to keep only the bullshit.
The Lizard attacks the school (which, by the way, is called Midtown Science High School. Why is Flash “I’m too dumb to express myself in anyway by violence” Thompson going to a science magnet school?) so every one runs away. Except Pete. He stays. “Peter never left the building, and now we can’t find him. Also, Spider-Man is in the building. But no one saw him go in.” That’s bad thinking. Leave, then come back.
Anyway, he and The Lizard are fighting. And he’s really concerned about getting his costume on. So no one can recognize him. But the Lizard is shouting his name constantly. Peter Parker! Peter Parker! Whether or not you put on that costume, people are going to put that shit together.
So, Peter goes through a wall. And then the lizard finds two chemicals on a desk, and pours them together. And they turn into a bomb. Why are those chemicals there? Why aren’t they locked up? Why are they right next to each other? Were they practicing making pipe bombs in class?
Stan Lee’s cameo is pretty awesome. Just completely oblivious to the giant battle happening behind him. It’s fun.
They fight for a bit, then the lizard runs away. It’s really pointless. But Spider-Man follows him to his secret lair. Where the Lizard has thoughtfully recorded his entire secret evil plan in an easy to enjoy form. It’s like someone in a writing room was thinking “Oh, screw it. Spider-Man just finds the secret evil plan. I don’t have time for this AND the unnecessary subplot about Peter’s parents.”
So the Lizard is going to turn everyone into lizards. Why? I don’t know. It seems like a good idea to lizard people, I guess.
So, the cops finally clue into the fact that there’s a lizard running around. They find him, and they shoot the shit out of him. Like ten cops with assault rifles just laying into him. Then what do they do? Do they wait to make sure that he’s dead? No, they walk right up to him. The point of a gun is that you don’t have to be near the thing you’re trying to kill. Don’t be near it! Predictably, that turns out badly. They get turned into lizard people. Bummer.
Oh, yeah, he just shrugs off all those bullets. I know the point is that he can regrow body parts. But still, there’s a limit. If you shoot holes in all his vital organs, he’s not getting back up. Lizard DNA isn’t doing that. Apparently he also injected himself with Wolverine DNA. Only explanation.
Meanwhile, Spider-Man gets intercepted. Fights a ton of cops before Captain Stacy finally figures out who he is. After Spider-Man convinces him that they have to save Gwen, he runs away. Captain Stacy says “Don’t shoot that feeling suspect” (which, I’ll be honest, I think is good advice at anytime. He’s running away. He’s not a threat. You don’t need to kill him) but this is the NYPD, so they shoot the fleeing suspect.
So here’s Spider-Man. He’s got dozens of city blocks to travel, and he has a hole in his leg. If only there was a way for him to travel along streets with tall buildings without the use of his legs. But I guess there isn’t. So he just runs along rooftops, jumping from building to building. Wait, what? What happened to swinging on the web? That’s what you do! You’re Spider-Man. Why can’t he do that? I don’t… they’ve arbitrarily decided that they’re not doing that. Fortunately that dude whose kid Spider-Man saved works on a crane on top of a building. So he convinces everyone on the street to swing their cranes out. Because… no, why? Why does Spider-Man need this? He’s never needed this assistance before. Suddenly it’s impossible to swing down a city street without cranes? That’s ridiculous.
Spider-Man shows up at Oscorp about the same time as Captain Stacy. So his webswinging is about the same speed as taking a car. Pretty impressive Spider-Man. Could’ve just taken off the costume and hailed a cab.
The Lizard puts his lizard gas in a device that will blanket the entire city. Then sets it to go off in two minutes? Why two minutes? I dunno. He likes ticking clocks, I guess. You gotta give Spider-Man a chance. Just unsporting to just enact your evil plan right away.
Spider-Man gets his ass kicked. But luckily he finds the liquid nitrogen on the roof. Cause that’s where you keep liquid nitrogen. On the roof. He sprays the Lizard, which you’d think would be the end of it. He’s cold blooded. Liquid nitrogen seems like the end. All the healing power in the world isn’t going to help when your core temperature is negative two hundred or whatever.
But no, it doesn’t kill him. Worse, Captain Stacy shows up to “help”. Unfortunately, that “help” comes in the form of shooting the frozen parts of the lizard. Haven’t either of you seen Terminator 2? If you’re fighting a creature that that heal wounds, and you freeze him, don’t shoot him so he can heal those wounds. Just leave him frozen, and go about your business.
Captain Stacy suggests Spider-Man deal with the “replacing a tube” issue, while he deals with the Lizard. I feel like you’re choosing the wrong jobs for your skillsets, man. Spider-Man deals with the whole tube issue, replaces the Lizard stuff with the anti lizard stuff just in time. But Captain Stacy, no so much. He gets stabbed through the chest. Turns out Super Strong Lizard Man vs Guy Who Likes to Rip Off Blil Hicks With Shotgun, you gotta give it to the lizard. Bummer.
So, the thing that the shooty thing is attached to falls over. Spider-Man falls off. He doesn’t have webs, because the shooters got broken. But he still has sticky powers. So he can just stick to the building and… oh, no, he’s just going to fall to his death. Stupid son of a bitch. Luckily the lizard regains enough humanity to save him. Unfortunately, he grabs Spider-Man with the arm that’s not going to be there when the transformation completes. God, no one in this movie can think two seconds into the future. Luckily, Spider-Man remembers he has super powers and climbs to safety.
Peter has some last words with Captain Stacy. No one mentions the fact that they could just spray him with the lizard gas long enough to heal his wounds, then let the anti lizard gas turn him human again. But maybe that would make the wounds return? The transformation back and forth is confusing.
Anyway, Pete has a little chat with Captain Stacy. He says that he understands why the city needs Spider-Man but forces Peter to promise that he’ll stay away from Gwen. Which is exactly opposite of the comic. In the comic his dying words were basically “Stay with her.” Now, I don’t mind changes to the story. If you adapt it, and you think the changes will improve it, sure, go for it. But after we reboot the entire universe, along with an entirely new origin, just so that it can be closer to the comic, it seems ridiculous to change major parts of the comic for no good reason. It doesn’t improve anything. It just adds ten seconds of tension. Because a scene later Gwen figures out why Peter stopped hanging out with her. And then a scene after that, he basically says “I’ve decided not to honor your father’s dying wish.” And she’s fine with that. Your dad died. He only had one request. And your ignoring it. So you can make out with Spider-Man. Not cool.
And then in the credits we see Curt Connors in jail. Which is different. Normally we kill off a character once he discovers a secret identity. But I guess Curt didn’t sell out Peter. That’s nice of him. Then he has a chat with a shadowy figure that’s probably part of his mind. It’s unlikely that the guy could just walk into the cell. But maybe he’s got connections. Or some sort of transporty device. Anyway, he asks Curt if he told Peter the truth about his parents. And he says no. So, there’s that. The annoying parents subplot that wasted valuable time that we could be using on a plot point we gave a shit about isn’t even resolved. We have to wait until the next movie to find out how that goes? Ugh.
Also, we never meet Norman Osborne, presumably because they didn’t want to pay whatever actor will eventually portray him for this movie when he doesn’t do anything. But he’s implied to be sick. And he needs Dr. Connors research to cure himself. Presumably not lizard DNA. And I doubt he’s going to inject himself with goblin DNA, since they’re notoriously hard to find. But we’re going to have to deal with another Green Goblin movie in 2014. So, get ready for that.
Finally, No J Jonah Jameson. That’s terrible. Spider-Man without J Jonah? Pointless. I know you weren’t going to find anyone as good as JK Simmons. But you need the character. He’s important. You can talk all you want about respecting the Spider-Man mythos or whatever, but you’ve ignored a vital part of it. And for what? So you can spend more time showing Spider-Man getting some rad moves on his skateboard or delving into his parents stupid past? You’ve got so much wonderful story to tell, you really shouldn’t be inventing less exciting stuff to replace it.