Movie Defense Force: The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Better Than Broody Gritty Wah Wah

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Quiotu:
I've always found it funny about Spiderman as a character, not that he can't get a decent movie to save his life, but that he's the character that you can't revolve a decent story around to save its life.

Spiderman is only a decent character as long as his environment involves strife concerning his life in general, which you can only do if he's young and inexperienced and unused to dealing with it. Which of course means that he has to perpetually be high school or college aged, because once he gets old and experienced enough to deal with his problems, you suddenly have a character who worked past his initial weaknesses... and turns into something Marvel can't deal with anymore....

Dude, what? Spiderman has major issues well into his post college life. Yes, it always involves strife with his personal versus professional life versus superhero life, but to say that it only works when he's young and inexperienced is ridiculous. One of the central themes of Spiderman is that his responsibility as Spiderman will always place the rest of his life at risk; he cannot juggle them. He has to choose to live one life entirely, because trying to serve both will always lead to the detriment of each. He can be a good husband to Mary Jane (they did actually get married), but his "responsibility" to the people as Spiderman will go unfulfilled. If he decides to serve the people as Spiderman, his commitment to his wife will go only half met. No matter where he goes, no matter how old he gets, his responsibilities will curse him. He's not like The Fantastic Four that have the safety and security of being "The Fantastic Four" wherever they go, and the world being in on, and accepting of their secret. Reed Richards doesn't have to worry about Kingpin taking a shot at Susan Storm. Sue can defend herself. Peter has to constantly worry about aunt may and Mary Jane. No matter how old he gets. As a teen, his actions as Spiderman cost him Gwen. As a young adult, his inaction as Spiderman cost him uncle Ben. It doesn't matter how "old" or "experienced" he becomes, being who he is will always cost him something. That's the point.

"This is my gift. This is my curse."

This kind of makes me feel like Jim and Moviebob are like me and my best friend when we watch movies together. I'm always nit-picking this thing or the other or talking about with some kind of philosophical framing, and then he'll retort with, "would you just shut up and enjoy the spectacle of it?"

Thanks for making this video, Jim. I haven't seen The Amazing Spider Man- neither this one nor the first one- but one thing always bothered me about the discussion regarding this set of movies vs. Sam Raimi's Spider-Man films (all of which I did see): Everyone is so gushing with praise about the older trilogy. I always wondered whether I was the only one who thought Tobey Maguire's acting as Peter Parker was downright embarrassing- apparently not :p

We have no chimney.
whaaat?

I died.

Great movie, I agree, Jim.

Humbly respect your opinion.

That said, I respectfully disagree. I wasn't having fun when I saw it (almost fell asleep partway through because the nonsensical story was not just stupid, but boring). That isn't to say that silly plots are bad, but there's silly and fun and then there's convoluted and asinine. This felt much closer to the latter for the majority of the film. Admittedly, I did enjoy the scenes where it was just Spidey vs Rhino and the action bits for the first Electro fight were... alright.

But the new Goblin just wasn't good in really any way for me. The lack of Jameson will be something that hangs over this series like a dark cloud. Good as Jamie Foxx generally is, I just found is character annoying. Comparisons to Edward Nigma are fair, but at least his reason to go mental was justified whereas Max Dillon just jumped into the crazy boat with almost no provocation needed. Yes, he was mentally unbalanced from the get-go, but I had that same problem with Harry too. They went from being buddy-buddy with Pete or Spidey and then immediately flipped on him with no real build up or real logical reason.

Aside from some of the action bits, the only other thing in the latest film that stands out is that Emma Stone is more fun to watch than Kirsten Dunst... and while I love Emma Stone, still not sure that's enough to really sell me on sticking with the franchise (especially given how ASM2 ends anyway *spoilers*).

Goliath100:
Now I want Bobby to make a video defending... Steam I guess. Ubisoft works too.

This in its entirety.

Jim, I don't see anything wrong with this being a reboot, I just don't find these movies to be interesting. Even if the fight scenes might be interesting, there are plenty of better movies out there with better...well, everything. I don't mega-loathe the series, I just don't see it being really worth much. Not to mention looking at it just reminds me of what could have been if they had actually continued the Raimi movies. If only the producers weren't such cocks.

Scrumpmonkey:
The new siper-man was camp. It just was. I lot of people can't handle a bit of camp. The movies were a mess but they weren't some kind of travesty. I think people take superheroes too seriously. The Amazing Spider Man 2 is a failure but it is not the same kind of failure as something like "Dark Knight Rises" or the new Spooperman movie. Some people prefer a campy farcical mess to grim faced uncomfortably.

I personally have had enough of the Nolan world Batman. That they tried to duplicate it in Superman was horrible. Superman is not Batman.

So far, Captain America Winter Soldier has gotten it just about right. It had a comic book feel without the broody nihilism.

Camp? Maybe if they make a Marvel (Shazam) movie. Guardian's of the Galaxy looks to be light. That doesn't make it bad though.

But if they could turn back time, have Adam West play Spidey? It might be good but it wouldn't be the Spiderman movie I want to see.

I'm yet to see this movie, but every time I see something about it, all I get is pretty much that "Iron Man 2" feel of being a setup to the rest, and it doesn't help much that pretty much the only scene I remember from the first one is the one where he talks about small knives.

And while I liked the "Spider-man" depiction in the first one because it was like the Spider Man I know, I actually know next to nothing about the character nor care that much about it, so that didn't help either and I'll probably just end up passing altogether on it.

Mangod:
Holy sh****! MovieBob! Jim's throwing down the gauntlet!

Hehe, this was more or less my thought too. Also: what a grand debate it would be. How about it guys? Moviebob, Jim? Maybe a guest episode in no right answer? :)

tzimize:

Mangod:
Holy sh****! MovieBob! Jim's throwing down the gauntlet!

Hehe, this was more or less my thought too. Also: what a grand debate it would be. How about it guys? Moviebob, Jim? Maybe a guest episode in no right answer? :)

You know what? I'm gonna PM Jim with this idea, because it sounds awesome.

Nope, sorry, don't see it.

The very fact that I want to punch Garfield every time he's on the screen shoots the movie in the foot for me right off the bat. Rest of the casting choices don't really do it for me either, and I'm not a part of the Emma Stone fan-train. Add to this the contrived and hole-ridden plot, and the whole thing feels like torture to watch. Sure, there might be a decent action sequence or two in there, but it only really works if I somehow ignore Garfield's "humor".

Raimi's trilogy was far from perfect, and McGuire was grating at times, but it was leaps and bounds ahead of this. The only good thing I can really say about this film is that it wasn't quite as bad as Green Lantern.

Gorfias:

Scrumpmonkey:
The new siper-man was camp. It just was. I lot of people can't handle a bit of camp. The movies were a mess but they weren't some kind of travesty. I think people take superheroes too seriously. The Amazing Spider Man 2 is a failure but it is not the same kind of failure as something like "Dark Knight Rises" or the new Spooperman movie. Some people prefer a campy farcical mess to grim faced uncomfortably.

I personally have had enough of the Nolan world Batman. That they tried to duplicate it in Superman was horrible. Superman is not Batman.

So far, Captain America Winter Soldier has gotten it just about right. It had a comic book feel without the broody nihilism.

Camp? Maybe if they make a Marvel (Shazam) movie. Guardian's of the Galaxy looks to be light. That doesn't make it bad though.

But if they could turn back time, have Adam West play Spidey? It might be good but it wouldn't be the Spiderman movie I want to see.

I find it amusing that Bob can talk at length about how silly the fan reaction to Joel Schumacher's Batman movie was and how ugly some of the backlash against it's camp sensibilities was whilst doing the EXACT same thing with Amazing Spiderman. "They betrayed this super serious character i worship and have carefully constructed my life and world view around! Whaa! Whaa!"

Is he blind to his own fanboy hypocrisy and that he is doing the exact thing he berates audiences of other fanchises for doing? My reaction to ASM2 being a kind of bad but still fun movie was just a "Meh" and shrug and walk away. I think the structural problems were more of a deal breaker for me because i had just previously seen "The Winter Soldier" in this felt about 10 years behind it but it does still (kind of) work as a big, dumb early 2000s-ish silly action romp.

And, lets be honest, there are very few people who take Spiderman THAT seriously (and that's the way it should be, I'm looking at you god-dammed batman).

I think what we should take away from this episode is that maybe, just maybe we have started taking superhero films a little too seriously.

I really enjoyed ASM2, but I did have a problem with Garfield as Spider-Man. It's not that he's a bad actor, but I didn't believe for a second that he was under 30. This destroyed my suspension of disbelief and any emotion I was supposed to feel was missing.

I did love Electro. The music, the CGI, Jamie Foxx's over acting all brought him to life. It's a shame the movie was so crowded with villains though.

anthony87:

JimB:
If you insist on ragging on someone's review, please rag on things the review actually says.

You mean things like "I'm depressed" and "I can't look at the red right now" or the title with that "Broke Moviebob" shite?

If you think you have any right to regulate what emotions MovieBob or indeed any human being other than yourself feels about something as legitimately pointless as a movie about a dude in tights who can lift cars over his head, then by all means, have fun tilting at that windmill. As long as you respond to things he actually said and don't tell blatant, obvious, outright lies like saying he was "literally crying," you will have met the absolute minimum standard of civil behavior. I'll think it's a low-class thing to do for entirely different reasons, but at least you will be displaying a level of courtesy I could hold slightly above contempt.

anthony87:
And the Tweets.....oh man those Tweets.

Take this with a grain of salt since I honestly do not know what the site's policy on the matter is and I can't be bothered to go look it up, but most fora I frequent would consider it a moderation-worthy offense to try to bring drama here from an outside medium like Twitter.

I honestly can't understand how anybody could like this movie. It's up there with Sucker Punch and The Green Lantern for me. Just horribly written, horribly paced schlock.

I didn't mind that it was a reboot, I didn't mind that it was campy, I just minded that it was awful on just about every level. And I like most of the actors in it.

But hey, to each their own. I loved the Dark Knight Rises, and that gets a decent amount of hate. On this very forum, in fact.

Oh Jim. Jim, Jim, Jimmyboy, Jim-Jim-Jerou.

Where's podtoid Jim?

Sorry, I meant, where's The Dismal Jesters Jim?

drummond13:
I honestly can't understand how anybody could like this movie. It's up there with Sucker Punch and The Green Lantern for me. Just horribly written, horribly paced schlock.

Eh I wouldn't really call Sucker Punch a movie that existed for its writing. To me the story was just a framing device for the specatacle fights, which certainly were spectacular, Green Lantern was just bad in every respect.

Granted Sucker Punch did have a point with its framing device to make, it's just that it requires a bit too much reading into to get to that point, and unfortunetly it danced on the wrong side of the parody/immitation line. It wanted to take shots at the "male gaze" motif, but ended up immitating them, at which point the point it wanted to make is moot.

Scrumpmonkey:

I find it amusing that Bob can talk at length about how silly the fan reaction to Joel Schumacher's Batman movie was and how ugly some of the backlash against it's camp sensibilities was whilst doing the EXACT same thing with Amazing Spiderman. "They betrayed this super serious character i worship and have carefully constructed my life and world view around! Whaa! Whaa!"

Is he blind to his own fanboy hypocrisy and that he is doing the exact thing he berates audiences of other fanchises for doing? My reaction to ASM2 being a kind of bad but still fun movie was just a "Meh" and shrug and walk away. I think the structural problems were more of a deal breaker for me because i had just previously seen "The Winter Soldier" in this felt about 10 years behind it but it does still (kind of) work as a big, dumb early 2000s-ish silly action romp.

And, lets be honest, there are very few people who take Spiderman THAT seriously (and that's the way it should be, I'm looking at you god-dammed batman).

I'm told, "review the movie you saw, not the one you wanted to see". I can appreciate Batman and Robin as working for what they were going for. It just isn't what I want to see. That sounds ditto for AS2. If it is just a silly romp, I'll watch it on Bluray for the fun visuals.

But it could have been so much more.

We don't have to take it seriously in the sense that everything must be Dark. And you are always going to have to suspend disbelief with a work of fiction: something is not going to 100% jibe. Just don't make me work too hard at it. If characters continually act against type and the plot and motivations make no sense whatsoever, you are left with some pretty effects. Spiderman can be light, fun, full of humor but still be hitting on those other cylinders.

It's a dumb fun superhero movie. I enjoyed the Nolan Batman movies, but I don't want every superhero movie to be a gritty, serious story. Sometimes I just want a dude to go around, kicking crime's bum & throwing one liners out like they're going out of fashion. In that regard it gets a pass from me. Though that's where it ends. Garfield's onscreen comedy is the only thing I really like about his Spiderman (The chimney scene is easily my favourite scene). I still think Toby Maguire did a stellar job as Spiderman and perfectly captured what Spiderman is to me (A social awkward dweeb). That does come from someone who has absolutely no attachment to the comics, so take it as you will.

Amazing Spider-man 2 is 20% of a good movie...

Emma Stone is great as Gwen and immensely likable (though I still think she would have made a better Mary Jane), the action is great, and Spider-man has his witty banter...

... Everything else fails. The pacing is horrendous, the subplots go nowhere, the character development is either non-existent or nonsensical, villains are largely wasted, Peter Parker is basically a more charismatic Edward from Twilight, and the film is far more concerned about setting up other films than actually being a good standalone movie (Marvel Universe films manage to succeed at both).

Honestly, if I was given power of the Spider-man franchise, I'd put the brakes on this franchise. It's stalling, it's stinking. It needs something fresh, something new, something bold, something different, something unexpected, something unlike any other superhero franchise at the moment...

I want them to take Spider-man into the future:
image

A very enjoyable video from Jim Sterling, as usual.
I agree with some points:
The spidey action was great this go.
Garfield is a pretty good Parker and Spidey (I wasn't as anti McGuire as some I know, but I see some of the points)
Spiderman quipping during fights and heroics, a (IMHO) key facet of the character (from comics and cartoons) that I felt was sorely lacking in the Tobey-Spidey, is done well here.
Max Dillon being a more cartoonish character, as opposed to a dark and gritty type was a welcome change, but they went over the top on that. If I recall correctly, Carrey's Nigma wasn't as bad as Dillon was (pre-Riddler)
This movie(ASM2), had some fun parts but it was dragged down by plot points that (presumably) are important for future movies. 2 hours plus of movie that really, on its own, should have been, half an hour? 45 mins?

Also for all the time Rhino got in the trailers/teasers/commercials I really felt let down by his last minute appearance.

As for the Batman and Robin comments popping up.....B&R was a Adam Westesque level camp on big budget with 90s grit (As Mr. Sterling said in his video about this film, at the time every hero was getting pouches and spikes). If you're wanting a silly cartoonish live action version of Batman, it is probably the film for you (That isn't meant as a slight, just it is what it is). However I recall, at the time (based on the marketing), expecting it to be the continuation of the dark and serious Tim Burton creation of 1989, where sure the villains my be wild and colorful, but Bats is far from it. If you're marketing grim and gritty and deliver cartoony and silly, expect the backlash.

All just my opinion, to each their own.

Gorfias:

Scrumpmonkey:

I find it amusing that Bob can talk at length about how silly the fan reaction to Joel Schumacher's Batman movie was and how ugly some of the backlash against it's camp sensibilities was whilst doing the EXACT same thing with Amazing Spiderman. "They betrayed this super serious character i worship and have carefully constructed my life and world view around! Whaa! Whaa!"

Is he blind to his own fanboy hypocrisy and that he is doing the exact thing he berates audiences of other fanchises for doing? My reaction to ASM2 being a kind of bad but still fun movie was just a "Meh" and shrug and walk away. I think the structural problems were more of a deal breaker for me because i had just previously seen "The Winter Soldier" in this felt about 10 years behind it but it does still (kind of) work as a big, dumb early 2000s-ish silly action romp.

And, lets be honest, there are very few people who take Spiderman THAT seriously (and that's the way it should be, I'm looking at you god-dammed batman).

I'm told, "review the movie you saw, not the one you wanted to see"

I say that so much I've had to limit the amount i post it XD But yes you are dead on. You need to remove yourself from trying to re-make the movie in your brain. I had that problem with the latest x-men film, i couldn't get past the fact i wanted to x-men first class: the continuation and not Brain singer being entertaining but kind of patchy and more like Xmen/X2 BUT i knew i was having that problem. I saw the movie again in a different frame of mind and i could enjoy it for what was there. It still wasn't a great movie i at least i feel i gave it a fair shake.

You have to be willing to accept where a movie is coming from and not let your own ideas of "Well i wanted them v=to make THIS movie" get in the way. A pretty obvious example would be Ang Lee's Hulk. I think much of the savaging was to do with expectations rather than what was actually there.

Let me clarify my main issue here.
Andrew Garfield is a good Spiderman, he is not, however, a good Peter Parker.
Toby Mcguire is a good Peter Parker, he is not, however, a good Spiderman.
Spiderman and Peter Parker are supposed to be opposites. The issue here lies in that all the people who can pull off that dual-role are too old or too dead.

Fusioncode9:
I enjoyed it as well. Moviebob's hyperbolic review where he literally started crying about the damn film was ridiculous. The movie wasn't a masterpiece in anyway but it was fun to watch.

Pretty much this. Although Jim may wanna always have someone with him/a baton whenever Bob tries to take him into a dark room from here on out...

Seriously, Jim is right in that recent superhero movies, especially on DC's side, have focused more on being dark and gritty. The reason I really like this film and a lot of the MCU (Can't comment on Thor, as I actually haven't seen it yet) is that they're, well, fun. That's all I want from a superhero movie, not someone brooding over their life failures and dressing up in crazy costumes.

And say what you will about Sony, but at least they didn't hire David "She Hulk is a porn star" Goyer.

Wow, an earnest defense of ASM2? That's pretty cool, the last few defenses have been kinda "ironic".

I really enjoyed the first ASM, probably more than SM1 and definitely more than SM3. Looking forward to this coming to Redbox or whatever.

Jim usually has really solid arguments but since when is comparing a movie to Batman & Robin supposed to be favorable?

TheRundownRabbit:
Let me clarify my main issue here.
Andrew Garfield is a good Spiderman, he is not, however, a good Peter Parker.
Toby Mcguire is a good Peter Parker, he is not, however, a good Spiderman.
Spiderman and Peter Parker are supposed to be opposites. The issue here lies in that all the people who can pull off that dual-role are too old or too dead.

This, this forever

Scrumpmonkey:

Gorfias:

I'm told, "review the movie you saw, not the one you wanted to see"

I say that so much I've had to limit the amount i post it XD But yes you are dead on.

I can't recall for sure where I first came by it. Screen Writer Syd Field? Roger Ebert? Do you know?

You need to remove yourself from trying to re-make the movie in your brain. I had that problem with the latest x-men film, i couldn't get past the fact i wanted to x-men first class: the continuation and not Brain singer being entertaining but kind of patchy and more like Xmen/X2 BUT i knew i was having that problem. I saw the movie again in a different frame of mind and i could enjoy it for what was there. It still wasn't a great movie i at least i feel i gave it a fair shake.

You have to be willing to accept where a movie is coming from and not let your own ideas of "Well i wanted them v=to make THIS movie" get in the way. A pretty obvious example would be Ang Lee's Hulk. I think much of the savaging was to do with expectations rather than what was actually there.

That helps a lot when I sit with my geek buddies and analyze a movie which we do a lot and is a lot of fun. But fan service, I think, is important too. At one point, they were going to make a Rambo 5. It would be a cross between Predator and John Carpenter's, "The Thing" with Rambo fighting for his life against a monster in an arctic station. They could make it terrific, but I know I'd have had my chin on the floor scratching my head thinking, WTF?

You can't become a slave to fan service or your end up very bland. Even so, I'd hope the powers that be at least have the topic on their radar.

But was this Green Goblin better than Willem Dafoe's Green Goblin?

Still haven't seen the movie, but I think a better title would be "The Amazing Spider-Man 2 - Shots Fired".

I just saw the first one and was surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

And THANK YOU for the Tobey Maguire comment! Now I know I'm not the only one who thinks of Arnold at the gas station learning to smile in T2 every time he gives that death's-rictus grin of his. Woo!

I'll admit that ASM2 was okay, unlike the first one it was sorta about something besides just retelling the Spiderman Origin story again in a less interesting way. It wasn't good, but at least it held up somewhat. But better than all 3 of the originals? It's maybe on par with Spiderman 3 if I'm being generous. At least Spiderman 3's Green Goblin was well built up across several movies and had some payoff in the end, and unlike Electro, Sandman had an actual motivation.

I find myself agreeing with both Jim, and Bob. The action in the film was amazing fun and some of the best I'd seen in a superhero movie since the Avengers, and Cap 2, but the plot was incredibly stupid/contradictory, and everything Bob said about the movies only existing for rights, and the creators not "getting" Spider-man also rang true. If there's one thing I'd have to disagree with Jim on it'd be the comedy, which was better physical than vocal. Anytime any sort of conversation or exchange was supposed to make me laugh it ended feeling unfunny, stilted, and awkward, very bad rom-com kinda stuff, whereas anytime Peter tripped over something, or webbed something into his own face, I found myself rolling on the floor laughing. The last film also had this going for it, like in the scene where Peter accidentally squeezes too much tooth paste, breaks his own alarm clock, or accidentally sticks to a random women's clothes. Comedy gold.

I do believe I just heard the sound of Jim throwing down the gauntlet at MovieBob's feet. It's on. Do you hear me? IT IS ON!

Scrumpmonkey:
The new siper-man was camp. It just was. I lot of people can't handle a bit of camp. The movies were a mess but they weren't some kind of travesty. I think people take superheroes too seriously. The Amazing Spider Man 2 is a failure but it is not the same kind of failure as something like "Dark Knight Rises" or the new Spooperman movie. Some people prefer a campy farcical mess to grim faced uncomfortably.

I'm sorry, the defense that the movie was camp is not enough. Have you seen what Marvel Studios has putting out? That's how you do slightly campy fun action movies. And they're still good movies. But what do you know, they're rolling in money and affection while mentioning Man of Steel or apparently even the Dark Knight Rises (which was a good film and a fitting end to the trilogy as I see it , certainly better than this fucking mess) in a positive context will get you as much lashback as liking any contentious movie. So no, it's not that people want superhero movies have to be too dark and gritty, if anything the opposite is true, it's that ASM2 was an absolute fucking shambles of a movie, a twenty foot step down from the first one, which in and of was pretty mediocre, if fairly inoffensive. We should demand more of films than an hour forty of bright flashy action sequences and "witty" quips, even when they're just summer blockbusters meant for fun.

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