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Earth Dr Reese Halter's Blog


It's hard to be Peter Parker, but it's great to be Spider-Man, says Andrew Garfield. Photo credit: Sony Pictures.

Story ran on Huffington Post April 29, 2014

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 lifts this franchise to a newfound level of thrilling entertainment. Director Marc Webb, Producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, and Sony Pictures Imageworks deliver a 3D movie that leaves you on the edge of your seat, craving more.

If you like Spider-Man, drama, nasty villains, New York City and spectacular special effects wound around a touching love story then don’t miss this early-summer blockbuster film.

From the moment this movie begins the audience is adrenalized, swinging between New York City’s skyscrapers with the amazing Spider-Man/Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield). Let the fun begin as this show exhibits a sense of playfulness masterfully weaved throughout the story.

Peter Parker is a relatable character because like so many people he has a girl problem and a money problem. Yet as soon as he dons his new and improved big-eyed, blue and red suit, Spider-Man represents goodness in an overcrowded world festering with evilness. He saves New Yorkers better than any other superhero and makes it look so easy.

In this excellent film, Spider-Man goes toe to toe with not only the most powerful corporation in the ‘Big Apple:’ Oscorp, but also he battles two formidable enemies that have joined forces – Electro (Jamie Foxx) and the Green Goblin (his oldest childhood friend turned villain Harry Osborne (Dane DeHaan)).

“Peter Parker is a kid who loves Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone). Yet he promised Gwen’s dying father that he would protect her by staying away from Gwen. Peter must contend with a harsh reality: that sometimes the most difficult part of loving someone means letting them go,” says Webb.

The Spider-Man story is about choices and compromises, which is what makes this film so believable. “And in this movie, events are going to conspire to force Peter Parker to make some big choices that are not necessarily in his control,” remarks Tolmach.

Peter Parker’s reality is that Gwen Stacy is his match, in intellect and emotion. Stone and Garfield have a smashing on-screen, charismatic chemistry. I enjoyed how they fell in love with each other’s gestures.

Peter’s Aunt May (Sally Field) is indeed his moral compass. “She’s the one who keeps things in perspective, but also understands what he’s going through,” reveals Field. Sally Field’s stellar performance is endearing and it ranks amongst her very best.

Foxx and DeHaan are splendidly cast as good characters (Max Dillion and Harry Osborne, respectively) that have both gone bad. Electro and the Green Goblin want to kill the same person (Spider-Man/Peter Parker), but for very different reasons. “That’s why the two of them team up – they are driven by their potent emotions,” says Webb.

The visual effects of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 are the best I’ve ever seen. Electro’s blue is spellbinding. Every time he lights up, he looks like a million lightning bolts all in one. Sony’s Imageworks in Culver City, Calif., has introduced a cinematic technology that enables/forces the action sequences to obey the laws of physics; it’s just another technological milestone from the brilliant VFX wizards at Imageworks.

The music by Hans Zimmer & The Magnificent Six featuring Pharrell Williams, The Smiths’ Johnny Marr, Incubus’ Michael Einziger and JunkieXL is superlative. It’s one of the finest scores I’ve ever heard.

The screenplay writers Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Jeff Pinkner and James Vanderbilt wrote a winning story of hope, a story that relates to audiences and will leave them wanting more.

Kudos to Marc Webb and cast for their terrific, thoughtful, and tireless effort to join Earth Hour and promote environmental and wildlife protection causes across this great planet.

Go experience The Amazing Spider-Man 2 — it’s ‘Over the Green Goblin’ good!

Australia, Radio 1, National: Ockham’s Razor

Earth Dr Reese Halter is an award-winning broadcaster and distinguished conservation biologist. His latest book with Chris Maser is Life, The Wonder of it All

Text © by Dr Reese Halter 2014. All rights reserved.


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