Not A Review Of “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”

So this week I finally caught “The Amazing Spider-Man 2“, AKA “Didn’t They Learn From Spider-Man 3 Not To Overstuff The Movie With Villains?”

 

No. No, they did not.

While we’re being honest, I wasn’t particularly stoked for this movie, but for the sake of completeness felt like I kind of had to watch it before the Spider-Man movie I actually want to watch, which is, of course, “Homecoming”.

Oh, wait, wrong “Homecoming”. Sorry. Here’s the one I was thinking of:

“The Amazing Spider-Man 2” put my wife to sleep almost instantly.

Me: “This is a Spider-Man movie. But it’s not the one with Tony Stark in it.”
Wife: “No Tony Stark? Why did they bother making it?”
Me: “Contractual obligations? Anyway I pretty much just want to get it out of the way so we can see the other one, ‘Homecoming’.”
Wife: “Who does Tony Stark play in the other one?”*
Me: (beat) “Robert Downey, Jr.”

Mix two cups of no Tony Stark with one cup of things blowing up right out of the gate, and you have a formula for a quick night-night. Fortunately, she didn’t miss much. While “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” wasn’t as terrible as “Spider-Man 3”, it, uh, wasn’t great. Lots of terrific actors playing potentially iconic characters were wasted in glorified cameos (you would never know Felicity Jones was playing Black Cat unless you recognized the name of her character, and Paul Giamatti’s Rhino has literally nothing to do in this movie except shout a little), while the origins of the two main villains were kind of on the ridiculous side. (Electric eels? Really?)

Spoiler-ish Alert: Being a comic book reader from way back when, I knew what was going to happen during the final** showdown between Spider-Man and the out-of-nowhere-yet-somehow-instantly-able-to-challenge-Spider-Man, but it was still kind of shocking and in fact a little disturbing to see it actually happen on-screen. Maybe that’s because the person it happened to was by far the most interesting and likable character in this pair of movies. But seeing as they’ve pressed CTRL-ALT-DELETE yet again on the Spider-Verse, we can just pretend it never occurred.

* Tony Stark has essentially replaced Robert Downey, Jr., in my wife’s mental inventory. She doesn’t waste a lot of space on remembering actors or movies. But she does know what she likes.
** Well, final except for the confrontation between Spider-Man and Rhino at the very end of the movie. But that hardly counts as a showdown.
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