Director Marc Webb spins a more emotional back-story on the early life of everyone’s favorite arachnid hero.
By Eugene Teh
For one, the amount of time and detail dedicated to the chronicling of Peter Parker’s (Andrew Garfield) past and his orphaned childhood lends more emotional pull toward his character when the action kicks in somewhere toward the second half of the movie.
The audience learns of how Peter lost his parents and was put in the care of his Aunt May (Sally Field) and Uncle Ben (Martin Sheen). A discovery of his father’s briefcase leads him into a fascinating world of cross-species interbreeding, which then brings him to the acquaintance of pop’s old partner Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans), also his future nemesis a.k.a Lizard.
There’s much more character development as compared to previous versions—more insight into his angst (a trademark characteristic every superhero has, of course), growing pains and the choices he makes, as he pursues the path marked out by his newfound arachnid skills. There is also a higher degree of reality and thus believability here, in that instead of having web shoot out from his wrists, Spidey is empowered by a self-designed, web-shooting gadget.
Those hoping to see more development on the part of Dr. Curt Connors will be disappointed, though. While previous instalments gave the villain an interesting Dr Jekyll-and-Mr Hyde treatment, there does not seem to be the same level of complexity vested into Lizard’s character here, resulting in a rather one-dimensional baddie.
If Webb’s sterling debut rom-com feature 500 Days Of Summer (2009) is anything to go by, girls will be more than pleased with this reboot; there is plenty of school romance from start to end. Many will soon be forgetting Mary Jane as they attach themselves to the intrigues of the relationship between the hot babe-geek hybrid that is Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) and Peter Parker.
Overall, a nice build-up to what seems to be a sequel—I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed to see Spidey fight alongside his fellow Avengers!