They’re not making it easy for an indecisive reviewer. The marketing campaign for this movie includes no fewer than four full-length trailers, I have to pick just one, and in the end, it doesn’t matter, because if you’ve seen all the trailers, you may as well have watched the movie.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 continues the story of Peter Parker as he faces down his deadliest enemies yet. Is it a swinging good time, or does it deserve to be squashed? Well, let’s take a look at the trailer and find out. (To follow along, click here.)
So who stars in this movie? Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Sally Field reprise their roles as Peter, Gwen Stacy, and Aunt May. Jamie Foxx of White House Down and Django Unchained plays Electro, Dane DeHaan of Chronicle and Lawless is Harry Osborn, and Paul Giamatti of Turbo and Saving Mr. Banks gets a cameo as the Rhino. Marc Webb returns to direct this sequel to see if he can improve on his previous work.
The trailer opens with Peter falling from the sky, lamenting, “The more people I save, the more enemies I make.” I know; people just hate it when you save other people. We get a glimpse of Rhino and the Green Goblin, and Peter adds that “It’s just a matter of time before I face those with more power than I can overcome.” Get it? Because he’s fighting Electro, and Electro has electrical power, and . . . okay, Peter, you’re supposed to be light and quippy. How come I’m having to make all your jokes for you?
Peter apologizes to Gwen for arriving late for their date, explaining that he had a “traffic thing.” Gwen asks if the traffic thing involved machine guns, and Peter replies, “That was implied.” Peter, not even girls read that deeply between the lines. Then Harry meets Peter, putting me in mind of an altogether different movie involving Sally. Harry shows Peter surveillance photos that Oscorp took of Peter, proving that the paparazzi are good for something after all. Why has Oscorp had Peter watched? No one seems to know. Maybe someone who works there wants Peter on his computer for a change (and having seen Electro’s origin in the extended third trailer, I wouldn’t be surprised).
As a truck plows through New York traffic, Peter goes to Aunt May, wanting to know what she isn’t telling him. She replies, “I once told you secrets have a cost. The truth does too.” $19.95 plus shipping and handling. But wait, there’s more! Peter uncovers an old subway car with a message from his father saying he’s discovered what Oscorp wanted to do with his research. They were going to create killer okapi. How diabolical! No, actually, we get a glimpse of Oscorp labs with Doctor Octopus’s arms and Vulture’s wings. You know, I used to complain that the first Amazing Spider-Man was a glorified trailer for this film, but now even the trailers are trailers for the next film. This is getting out of hand, people.
Harry discovers the lab, too, including Electro, and asks, “What is all this?” “The future,” someone replies. Great Scott, that’s heavy! “We literally can change the world,” says Harry. We can turn it into a marshmallow and toast it on the sun. The villains gear up, but Harry asks about Peter. “Not everyone has a happy ending,” his father, Norman, replies. So Peter Parker is Rumplestiltskin from Once Upon a Time? Now I really want to see this crossover.
As the trailer’s action montage begins with Spider-Man taking a manhole cover to Rhino’s head, Gwen tells Peter, “This is bigger than you.” And apparently it is, as Electro flexes his fingers and Times Square shatters and collapses. At that point, I’d be web-swinging to another city. But Peter sticks it out, saying, “I made a choice. This is my path.” Right through your FACE, Green Goblin! Yet another plane falls out of the sky (I’m telling you, any movie character who gets into a plane is asking for trouble these days), and Electro blows up some more stuff, declaring, “Soon everyone in this city will know how it feels to live in a world without power, without mercy, without Spider-Man!” Hey, as long as there’s still chocolate, I’m okay with that. And the trailer ends with an awesome tracking shot of Electro chasing Spider-Man through a bunch of tall electrical gizmos trying to fry him. I really have no joke for that; that’s definitely one of the most awesome things I’ve seen in a movie trailer, right up there with Thor smashing a rock-troll, Iron Man’s army of suits, and a giant mech suit swinging a freighter ship at a monster’s head.
So based on the trailer, do I recommend this movie? Yeah, I’d say so. It’s got the fun and epic action of the first film, and it looks like it’s been taken up a notch. All the actors are great, and I can’t wait to see them on screen together. That said, I’m worried that there might be too much going on in one movie, especially with three villains (even though the Rhino apparently won’t be onscreen very long, from what I’ve heard). Also, I’d just like to point out that the trailers, TV spots, and other marketing strategies have given away nearly everything about this movie except for the very ending. Therefore, I’m probably going to wait for the DVD on this one.
But beware the killer okapi, people. Beware…
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is owned by Sony.