So for those of you who have seen the Tobey/Spidey movies, this is not a continuation of that story. It is a RE-TELLING of Spiderman's genesis. This time we have Andrew Garfield (The Social Network) as the geeky high school kid who covets the cute girl (Emma Stone), raised by his aunt and uncle after his parents' mysterious death when he was a youth. The bones of the story are basically the same, but a few details vary.
This time, his love interest is not Mary Jane (which seems sacrilegious if you ask me) but Gwen Stacy, a brainiac at his school and daughter of the police chief. While it seems Mary Jane was being cheated on, what is not to love about Emma Stone? She seems to be able to nail the chemistry with any of her male counterparts on screen.
And instead of Spidey finding a nemesis in Green Goblin/Norman Osborn, he goes face to face with a colleague of his father's - Dr. Curt Conners who, through experimentation, becomes The Lizard. I can't say I was all that impressed with The Lizard.
What did surprise me was that I warmed up to Andrew Garfield. He was fine in The Social Network, but I couldn't see him as a guy who would take on New York City's evil-doers. In fact, he was a likable, gawky, endearing fellow who shouldered his responsibilities with an earnestness. Can he carry a new series? I think he can do it.
As far as the movie as a whole, however, there was nothing going on. Nothing all that creative or unpredictable, no new effects or clever photography. If your expectation is to see something mind-blowing, you won't find it here. But if you need to get out of the heat and want a little summer superhero action, you'll be fine.
3 out of 5 stars