In an effort to sap some of the attention being laid on the Avengers, Columbia recently released a four-minute “super preview” for their web-slinger reboot, The Amazing Spider-Man. I don’t know how they did it – maybe it’s because I still have a Spider-Man T-shirt that gets heavy rotation, or maybe it’s because of the fond memories I have reading issues of Ultimate Spider-Man as a kid – but those sneaky studio heads have got me counting down the days until July 3. Judging by the preview and what is currently known about the film, Amazing has a lot going for it, and should be a better film than Sam Raimi’s 2002 Spider-Man.
1. Andrew Garfield
There’s a reason we haven’t heard from Toby McGuire in a while. The monotone actor did his part in crafting a believable Peter Parker, but from the on-set, he seemed to lack a crucial piece of Parker’s puzzle: exuberance. Spider-Man, as a character, is in constant battle with a guilty conscience, but wouldn’t you know it? He still manages to have fun, zipping around New York City with an awesome set of superpowers. Look for Andrew Garfield – who had an excellent turn in The Social Network – to balance out the tortured soul/teenager-having-fun-with-superpowers aspect of Spidey.
2. Marc Webb
Webb made his directoral debut with 2009’s 500 Days of Summer, one of the best romantic dramadies in years. The film showcased an incredibly realistic depiction of relationships and excellent character development. On the surface, Spider-Man shares little with Summer, but real, fleshed-out characters are always appreciated, whether they wear superhero costumes or collared shirts and cardigans.
3. High school setting
Raimi’s version was quick to take Parker out of high school and place him in the real world. I’ll never know why there was such a rush; as the Ultimate Spider-Man series (which took place almost exclusively in a high school setting) proved, watching a teen-aged Peter juggle crime-fighting and the high school social scene was immensely entertaining.
4. Lizard will entertain
Comic book heads aren’t fond of the Lizard, and for good reason: it’s hard to build a 10-issue series around such a brain-dead bad guy. He should make for a great two-hour action movie villain, though, his brute strength and savage demeanor offering a great contrast to the wiry, witty Spidey.
5. Original story developments
A large part of The Amazing Spider-Man will focus on Parker’s parents. With pieces of conspiracy being sprinkled into every trailer, Webb seems to be writing his own, original bit of Spider-Man backstory. Considering how many times the web-slinger’s tale has been told, adding a new chapter is the only way to have genuine plot twists.
6. Blonde Emma Stone > Red Kirsten Dunst
Well, yeah. This one is pretty obvious.
Watch the film’s newly released four minute trailer below.