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Jamie Foxx
Andrew Garfield
Emma Stone

Dane Dehaan.
Alex Kurtzman
Roberto Orci
Jeff Pinkner.
Running Time
142 minutes

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The Amazing Spider-Man 2
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When Max Dillon (Foxx) is transformed into living electricity by an industrial accident, Peter Parker (Garfield) — aka Spider-Man — protects New York City from his rages. Having sworn to keep his girlfriend Gwen Stacy (Stone) out of Spider-Man’s dangerous business, Peter struggles with their relationship, but Gwen is determined not to let him make decisions for her.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2
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Cynics suspected The Amazing Spider-Man hastily rebooted a franchise (which had stalled thanks to the compromised Spider-Man 3) mostly to retain the lucrative rights to a property which would otherwise revert to Marvel. Marc Webb confounded them by delivering a different take on the comic books with Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone as an engaging, funny couple. Ever since Stan Lee and Steve Ditko created the property, Spider-Man has straddled genres — sci-fi superheroics and grounded teen soap opera — and Webb’s cleverest move was to play the angst lightly and let the kids have fun.

Unhindered by any need to rehash bitten-by-a-radioactive-spider or guilt-over-the-dead-uncle issues, this allows the brush-haired Garfield and sweetly determined Stone to play out a far more nuanced and complex relationship. The strength of this series’ conception of Gwen, as opposed to the dangle-and-wait-for-rescue women of previous Spider-Movies, is that she insists on being an active participant in the heroics. This is now even thornier since Peter promised her dead dad (a glowering Denis Leary shows up as a ghostly rebuke) he’d keep her safe. Emma Stone is the Heath Ledger of this series, doing something unexpected with an easily dismissed supporting character. Awards voters somewhere must note that she’s made a love interest Marvel killed off in 1973 as relevant and potent as, say, Black Widow or Mystique — maybe more so in that Gwen’s only (not inconsiderable) superpowers are intelligence and kindness.

This follows the superhero first sequel pattern — as seen in everything from The Dark Knight to Captain America: The Winter Soldier and, indeed, Spider-Man 2 — of being longer, with more spectacular action, more complex character interplay, more confident effects (web-swinging in 3D works because buildings give a perspective which sells the process better than in flying scenes), and more flamboyant villains. Ultimately, it’s also much tougher on the hero to propel him into further adventures. A lesson has been learned in that a plot which seemed as if it could get into the tangle that undid Spider-Man 3 (too many damn villains) is paced much better, with overlapping origins for Electro and a Goblin of sorts so that action scenes build emotionally rather than simply go on and on.

If Jamie Foxx overplays his pre-Electro nerdiness, his increasingly alienated and demented super-threat serves to highlight the way Peter hasn’t become a monster despite the accumulated personal losses and resentments. Dane DeHaan makes Harry Osborn a fresh character, just this side of smarmy as he goes off the deep end — a super-villain who’s also a sickly 20-year-old capable of lying on a sofa crying when he doesn’t get his way. Paul Giamatti is also fun as bonus-round thug the Rhino.

After Man Of Steel, note the way the set-pieces emphasise that Spider-Man’s instinct during a monster rampage is to protect innocent bystanders before clobbering the bad guy. The little kid he saves from bullies is perhaps the most crucial walk-on in the series (even more than Stan Lee), figuring in a stirring last minute of stepping-up-to-the-plate heroism. The final third is tonally awkward, but big reveals will resonate into Amazing Spider-Man 3 — some controversial, but all powerfully played.

A few too-broad gags aside — and even these are in the funky spirit of ’60s Marvel — this is a satisfying second issue with thrills, heartbreak, gasps, and a perfectly judged slingshot ending.

Reviewed by Kim Newman

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Empire Star Rating

RE: Cryder-Man

Usually we prefer the old actor in the movie because they are always looking great.  ... More

Posted by Rodham at 05:47, 12 October 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Cryder-Man

Oh see I already posted here before seeing it, and wasn't wrong. This film is a big horrible mess. ... More

Posted by rich at 18:03, 27 September 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Cryder-Man

I miss Teary McWhiner ... More

Posted by rich at 00:16, 31 August 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Cryder-Man

L: Darren47 Andrew Garfield's Spider-Man is (in my opinion) unquestionably better than the Teary McWhiner's Spider Man. nd yet Garfield spent most of the film crying... ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by UTB at 22:20, 30 August 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Just like the comics I read as a kid

Is this film entirely CGI? Looks like it from the trailer, looks shite ... More

Posted by SQUATCH at 10:23, 29 May 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Dull as the proverbial ditch water.

Enjoyed it, but it is a mess for sure. Thinking on it I probably enjoyed the first one more, but I suppose this trumps it in terms of action. ... More

Posted by Filmfan 2 at 12:18, 02 May 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Quite Wondefrul - Roll on Spidey 3,4,5,6 etc

A slight improvement on the previous movie but not by much.Too long, pretty boring in places, too many villains/storylines, and another bad performance from Jamiee Foxx. The action and fx were pretty good though and Garfields Spidey wasnt the massive twat he was in the first movie. Raimis Spider Man 2 is still easily the best Spidey movie. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Cool Breeze at 20:19, 30 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Quite Wondefrul - Roll on Spidey 3,4,5,6 etc

I really enjoyed this, thought it was a great sequel and better than the first movie. I think this is the best out of the 5 Spiderman movies thus far to be honest. ... More

Posted by DONOVAN KURTWOOD at 13:06, 29 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Quite Wondefrul - Roll on Spidey 3,4,5,6 etc

Must admit I was looking forward to this tonight after enjoying the first one. I thought it was actually rather dull. Far too much romance and cheesy false bonding, play acting between Spidey, Gwen and Harry. Electro was really wasted too. This should be two stars at the most. They should try working on the script a bit more and try make us care about the characters. At the end when Spidey comes back I was like "Meh" ... More

Posted by Private Hudson at 22:08, 28 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Peter Parker is continuing to fight crime as Spider-Man. Haunted by a promise he made to her father, he can’t commit to Stacey, who breaks up with him. He pursues and apprehends Aleksei Sytsevich, who attempted to steal a truck containing plutonium vials. During the chase, Spider-Man rescues Oscorp Industries employee Max Dillon. Peter’s childhood friend Harry Osborn returns to New York to see his terminally ill father Norman, the CEO of Oscorp Industries. Norman explains his illness is here... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Dr Lenera at 17:05, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

I would give 4 out of 5 stars. Andrew Garfield is great in this movie. However, Jamie Foxx doesn't really fit his character. Also, I think that Mark Webb could have try to avoid some of the teenage romance dialogue between main actors. CGI is stunning. Andrew is a lot better Spiderman than Tobey, but I would really love to see Gordon-Levittpiderman ... More

Posted by Mrs.Starbuck at 16:20, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

L: Rgirvan44 Why are the writers of this and Star Trek Into Darkness obsessed with magic blood? t's Orci and Kurtzman at work again, papering over the cracks in their dire stories with yet more deus ex machina laziness and trying to creatively kill another franchise! (Anyone on US pace for Arrow might agree that show's going down the same lines too!) ASM2 is OK, nothing more. But it's as if Sony's solution for getting films into the cinema quickly is to cut and paste from the 3r... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by BelfastBoy at 11:21, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

A decent addition to the franchise. Hardly groundbreaking in any respect but hugely enjoyable. I'm looking forward to catching it again soon. b] >/b] >/b] > /b] > ... More

Posted by Macavity at 10:46, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Aren't we all? ... More

Posted by horribleives at 08:55, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Why are the writers of this and Star Trek Into Darkness obsessed with magic blood? ... More

Posted by Rgirvan44 at 08:20, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Undramatic and boring; a tick-box, humdrum affair. ... More

Posted by Hood_Man at 00:36, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Holy shitballs what a boring mess of a movie. Overlong, muddled and by the end I literally couldn't give a toss about any of it. Avoid. (Probably didn't help that a pair of utter cretins talked their way through the entire film. Thanks lovebirds.) They try and stuff far too much into this, and the result is thin on depth. I actually liked the first one - but this was rushed and like I wrote, tries to pack too much in. (competing with Avengers perhaps?) Didn't they learn from Raimi's Spider... More

Posted by jrewing1000 at 00:09, 21 April 2014 | Report This Post


Really didn't like the first one, but I hope this improves as you guys have mentioned. Andy Murray just comes across as a bit of a douche, is his character any more likable this time? ... More

Posted by rich at 16:33, 19 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

I didn't hate the first film, just found it a little bland, but this is a huge improvement in every way. ... More

Posted by Proudfoot at 14:22, 19 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

After hating Garfield's first outing as the web-slinger I was pleasantly surprised by The Amazing Spider-Man 2. I actually really enjoyed it. Better action, a more convincing story (although a little rushed in places) with well-developed characters and plenty of wit. I think it's clear now that this was the film Webb and co wanted to make and the first one was just a rush-job retelling of the origin so they could get to this point. If they get Amazing Spider-Man 3 right, it will make this trilo... More

Posted by Vadersville at 23:43, 18 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Five years after Sam Raimi’s disappointing threequel, the Spider-Man film franchise was rebooted, in which while there was a sense of déjà vu as The Amazing Spider-Man retold the origin story that everybody knows, (500) Days of Summer director Marc Webb and the British actor Andrew Garfield now in the role of our favourite friendly neighbourhood wall-crawler gave us a fresh and enjoyable superhero romp that was different enough to avoid any comparison with the Raimi trilogy. As The Amazing Spid... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by R W at 18:24, 18 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Whilst I could in no way express a dislike for this film – (there’s plenty to like about it) I did have some issues with it. Chief among them was its running time. For me it was just way too long – and while I admit that this was obviously because the filmmakers are keen to expand the whole spidey’verse – as well as make a film more about “him & her” as opposed to following the “super-hero / damsel in distress” route – it suffered because it felt like several films worth of ideas stuffed into... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Headpie75 at 13:29, 18 April 2014 | Report This Post

RE: A near perfect Spider-man film

Really fun movie. Great entertainment. ... More

Posted by Proudfoot at 11:24, 18 April 2014 | Report This Post

Another good superhero flick

When news broke a few years ago of another Spider-Man reboot, it was greeted with a degree of animosity. While it’s true that Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3 was a complete mess of a film and the character perhaps needed a kick up the behind, the thought of yet another new take with a new cast and director sounded rather exhausting. As it turned out, Marc Webb’s (whose only other feature credit at the time was the distinctly action-less quirky comedy (500) Days Of Summer) take on the web-slinger was... More

Posted by Whistler at 14:14, 17 April 2014 | Report This Post


I've made a list of all the things I spotted, including the mid and post credits scenes. der-man-2-easter-eggs-you-may-have-missed/ ... More

Posted by luccewada at 10:42, 17 April 2014 | Report This Post

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