'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' - Movie Review

The first series of big budget Spider-Man movies starring Tobey Maguire took until the third movie to fall into self-parody, with the utterly ludicrous emo-Peter Parker after Peter is taken over by the Venom parasite. This second series starring Andrew Garfield, has only required two movies to achieve the state of self-parody. There are only two real characters in the movie: Peter and Gwen (Emma Stone). Everybody else is a plot device, a cliché, or irredeemably over-the-top. And even Peter and Gwen are moved around like pieces on a Snakes-and-Ladders board (I'm not going to grace this garbage with a comparison to the more traditional "chess" board). Paul Giamatti shows up as a growling, sweating Russian gangster for five minutes at the beginning. Then he disappears for the entire duration of the movie (2h21m, it's not like they didn't have time to develop actual characters), only to reappear for a few seconds. Dane DeHaan is Harry Osborn - he looks like a sleazeball from the second he steps on screen, and his father's nastiness is provided as a reason for him being evil, but his dubious friendship with Peter is never believable and barely explored. Worst of all is Jamie Foxx as Max Dillon/Electro: he's played as a genius electrical engineer with the social skills of a wall socket and a persecution complex. They had better than two hours to make a good character with this, and instead they use brutally over-used stereotypes.

The effects are great, but there's really nothing else to watch this movie for.