*Slight Spoilers* The movie trailers pretty much told the story here. A bloated, SFX-laden turd. Andrew Garfield continues to underwhelm as Spider-Man. Viewers pray he would just finish a sentence, rather than the stumbling, mumbling “I’m-such-a-kooky-teenager” performance this 31 year-old man puts forward. Emma Stone, a talented actress, is hopelessly miscast as Gwen Stacy. Jamie Foxx was all right as Electro, but his resemblance to the even worse Batman & Robin’s Mr. Freeze was a constant reminder of how awful these blockbusters can get. The plot was drab and the dialog clichéd. And why did the actors repeat almost every line of dialog twice? Listen to them talk—are they trying to convince themselves this flat drivel was worthy of being said? This is an SFX movie, pure and simple, and the action sequences shine. Viewers can easily tell that the sharp minds at Marvel, the ones behind the original three Spider-Man flicks and those original X-Men movies, flew to Marvel Studios and left the Spider-Man license at Sony, which they were contractually forced to. Pity.
Three interesting points: This film is partly inspired by Amazing Spider-Man Annual #5 and Amazing Spider-Man #121. The ending of Spider-Man #121 is a doosy and controversial to this day. I wondered if the powers-that-be would have the guts to leave those events in the movie. They did. Color me surprised.
Secondly, there is one brief scene that is jaw-droppingly inspirational. I won’t ruin it but it has to do with a boy in a Spider-Man outfit standing in the street. That 90 seconds captures what Spider-Man is all about.
Thirdly, the costume was good. Best live-action Spider-Man costume so far. As for the rest of the film, Bill said it best ... “full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”
Rating: ** stars out of 5