Friday, July 13, 2012

The Amazing Spider-Man (Sony)

This latest retread of Stan Lee’s familiar Spider-Man tale has a lot going for it, especially if you don’t mind sitting through the back story yet again of how nerdy, bullied high school student Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) comes to acquire his sticky, high-flying powers, and falls in love with fellow student Gwen (Emma Stone). The marvelous Welsh actor Rhys Ifans plays the doctor – former colleague of Parker’s late father (Campbell Scott) – whose experiments lead to Parker’s transformation. Garfield – so wonderfully sensitive in the recent Broadway revival of “Death of a Salesman” -- gives a detailed, thoughtful performance in the James Dean mode. And his interaction with Stone has good chemistry. James Vanderbilt, Alvin Sargent, and Steve Kloves’ script gives good measure to the human drama, along with the action sequences. Marc Webb directs both aspects with flair, and the special effects are very well done indeed. The 3D process, however, seems to me to add little to the experience. There’s nice work from Sally Field as Parker’s down-to-earth Aunt May, and Martin Sheen as Uncle Ben. Denis Leary also has some good moments the police captain out to capture the vigilante Spider-Man. (Rated PG-13 for sequences of action and violence.) (Harry Forbes) Print this post


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