Watch: 'The Amazing Spider-Man' Trailer Presents A Not So Amazing Origin Story & Wonky POV Web Work

by Kevin Jagernauth
July 20, 2011 2:21 AM
32 Comments
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Granted, when "The Amazing Spider-Man" hits theaters next year, it will be a full decade since Sam Raimi's first Spider-Man movie and there will be a whole new generation of kids growing up with Peter Parker for the first time. But for the rest of us, the origins of the young photographer's crime fighting abilities have been elaborated not only in Raimi's films, but on the long-running cartoon show and in the comics. We've been down that road multiple times with very little variation in the myth, but it looks like director Marc Webb is going to tell us that familiar tale all over again. Or maybe, it won't be as familiar as we think.

"I feel we have certain obligations to the iconography of Spider-Man, which is based mostly in the comics. The other thing is Spider-Man has a lot of different incarnations in the comics. While there are certain mainstays — a kid who gets bitten by a spider, he’s an outsider, the death of his Uncle Ben helps endow [him] with the mentality of a hero — those things remain the same but there’s also room for interpretation. He’s been around since the 1960s. The wealth of material here — whether it’s story or character — is really profound but I also feel it’s my responsibility to reinvent it in some ways," Webb told Hero Complex.

Even with that in mind, the first trailer for "The Amazing Spider-Man" is disappointingly not amazing or even, well, good. Much of the focus is on Peter Parker's journey to become a superhero and it simply feels like a retread, which wouldn't be so bad if the trailer didn't close off with a truly wonky, gimmicky POV made-for-3D sequence in which the audience goes web-slinging with Peter Parker over the roofs and buildings of Manhattan. It feels either like an amusement park ride (which we're sure is being made at this moment based on that footage) or a weird video game sequence, but not something we're eager to sit through at our multiplex. It's not all bad either, as Rhys Ifans alone looks like he's gonna have a blast playing The Lizard in the film, chewing up his dialogue with relish and spitting it out. And Emma Stone brings her (overly?) familiar charm to the role of Gwen Stacy, with Andrew Garfield looking perfectly serviceable (if not all that memorable) in the lead role. But really, could we not get a Spider-Man film that drops right into the movie with Parker already a superhero and find a different way to address how he came to gain his powers? It's baffling that after this many comic movies, everyone is adhering to the strict structure these films go by.

"For me, it’s enough of a reinvention that it is a different Peter Parker. In the comics there’s just ongoing sagas. Why can’t we do that cinematically? What the truth was: I like the other movies and I was a little bit skeptical but then I asked myself if I wanted to see [this new story and interpretation] and the answer was yes. I was interested in that universe and I believe I have something to say that’s different enough to be worth my time," Webb said. He's certainly approaching the material seriously and intelligently but it remains to be seen if he's staked out a take that is unique enough from what has come before.

But as far as first impressions go? Yeah, we're fairly disappointed by the spot which seems more geared to young kids (which we suppose is the demographic that is being aimed at). Irrfan Khan, Martin Sheen, Sally Field, Denis Leary, Campbell Scott, Julianne Nicholson, Annie Parisse, Chris Zylka and C. Thomas Howell round out the cast. The 3D film hits on July 3, 2012. Full trailer below.

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More: Films, Super Hero Films, The Amazing Spider-Man

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32 Comments

  • adm g | July 23, 2011 9:50 AMReply

    they couldn't have waited another ten years? i'm bored already.

  • doctor | July 21, 2011 10:17 AMReply

    I realize i'm a little behind here on this discussion thread, but I think you guys are simply ASSUMING this origin story will be the told the exact same way as Raimi's first flick.

    I mean, if you watch the trailer there is no footage of his Uncle Ben dying or that whole wrestling phase that spidey goes through before he becomes a hero. So, I would never see this trailer and just think it would be the exact same story we already know.

    I mean, wouldnt that be kinda cool if we all go into the movie expecting Uncle Ben to die but he doesnt? that's a way to shake things up a bit. And I personally think the whole masked wrestler phase should go - it just wouldnt fit with the whole idea that Peter Parker is a high schooler and everything.

    I dunno, I just dont think we should be jumping the gun and dismissing the movie so soon. We really dont know much about the plot from this trailer except that Parker gets bit by a spider and gains super powers.

  • Kotomi | July 21, 2011 6:16 AMReply

    It doesn’t look interesting.And not fan of this "darker and edgier" tone.

    I have bad feeling on this film because I'm not sure if Marc Webb is right director for this film("(500) Days of Summer" ? music videos?).And...I don’t want to post the comment of anonymous user,but I read online comment of someone who insisted that he/she worked for both this and Raimi’s films.That person said like "Raimi had much better vision".Of course he/she might be internet liar.

    Sorry for my poor English.

  • Glass | July 21, 2011 1:45 AMReply

    The Amazingly Familiar Spider-Man Reboot: Just Ignore the Three We Already Made.

  • Carson Dyle | July 21, 2011 1:41 AMReply

    I think that we saw this exact same movie in 2002.

  • Joe | July 20, 2011 8:48 AMReply

    I don't really care for the trailer but whoever said that Andrew Garfield is all wrong for this is crazy, it's PERFECT casting and he'll probably be the sole redeeming quality of a shitty movie.

  • StephenM | July 20, 2011 8:11 AMReply

    I love Raimi's first two movies, the second especially is near-perfect popcorn-superhero fun.

    But I think this looks pretty good, too. I understand why people want something new, and I admit to not being blown away, but I just don't feel the need to demand brilliance from something like this. If its good, its good, even if its not entirely original. Something I've always liked about comics is the way they can constantly re-imagine iconic characters with subtle differences to bring out various qualities. If this brings out Peter Parker as a moodier teenager, with some feisty punkishness with a different look and villain, that's good enough for me.

    But I also agree with the dislike for the POV. It started off pretty cool, but after 5 seconds it started getting boring. They better not use it much.

  • rotch | July 20, 2011 7:24 AMReply

    When did all this hate for Raimi started. Spider-man 2 is all kinds of awesome.

  • rodie | July 20, 2011 7:09 AMReply

    Hmm, I think the POV thing works really well when he leaps off a building, but when he's running? It feels like a stupid video game. I really hope they don't overuse it. Fingers crossed they just used an extended cut ofit for the trailer, and we'll only get one shot like that in the finished movie.

  • chaz bono | July 20, 2011 6:22 AMReply

    "Hmmm spider-biters.
    If you say this looks bad and you say you love Raimi’s, you are lying to yourself one way or the other."

    actually, you are way off. The fact that this already exists in Raimi's version is what makes this so irrelevant and lame. When Raimi's came out, it was new, different, and original.

  • Jake | July 20, 2011 6:09 AMReply

    Right on, Seth. Who wouldn't enjoy seeing a standalone cold open with Spidey foiling a bank robbery by a set of lesser-known villains, like Rhino or Scorpion, for instance. It seems like the James Bond template would fit comic book adaptations like a glove (Spielberg and Lucas refined the formula with the first two Indy flicks).

    You could argue that the Joker/bank sequence from TDK operates in a similar manner, but it's not a cold open and works directly into the narrative of the film.

  • seth | July 20, 2011 5:55 AMReply

    Why waste a film of these reboot sereis on another origin? It's going to be the same origin since Spider-Man debuted. Do an origin montage in the credits and hit the ground running.

    Treat these reboots like the James Bond films or like a new creative team coming onto the comics. More continuing adventures with a rotating cast & direction every few films instead of starting from scratch every trilogy.

    They don't have to contradict or even acknowledge the previous movies but at the very least, they don't have to keep doing the origin. Just tack "Amazing/Spectacular/Sensational" on the title to differentiate from the previous series.

  • tristan eldritch | July 20, 2011 5:12 AMReply

    I like it. I don't understood people who are saying they wanted a lighter tone......I mean, Spiderman traditionally has a light tone, and its been done in the Raimi movies, so why not try something different? Plus, I suspect the POV stuff might play a lot better in 3D on the big screen. Too early to say, obviously, but i think at the very least I'm going to like Garfield a lot more than McGuire.

  • daniel | July 20, 2011 5:10 AMReply

    Hmmm spider-biters.
    If you say this looks bad and you say you love Raimi's, you are lying to yourself one way or the other.

    This looks by any standard, perfectly good. I agree the 'serious origin story' has become de rigueur for superhero films, but, especially in comparison to hokey disaster of Spiderman 3, I'll take it.

  • Jack | July 20, 2011 4:54 AMReply

    coming from a major spidey-fan, this looks dreadful. Andrew garfield, as good as he was in "the social network", looks like an absolute miscast. Truly just a terrible choice, I literally cringed during the trailer. And maybe the POV shot would have been cool like 10 years ago. And to think the screenwriters were aiming for a realistic movie with real dialogue...

  • Kevin Jagernauth | July 20, 2011 4:22 AMReply

    YouTube version now added

  • rodie | July 20, 2011 3:58 AMReply

    Did SONY yank the trialer down? It won't play for me, anywhere. Anyone have a link???

  • Jake | July 20, 2011 3:56 AMReply

    I'm gonna bawl like a baby when Sheen's Uncle Ben dies. Perfect casting.

    That being said, cinematic origin stories are tedious. Raimi's series has its flaws, but its origin story was fresh and engaging enough to not be tedious. Hell, if everyone's going to retroactively knock Raimi's series, feel free. Spider-Man 2's arguably the best live-action superhero film thus far.

  • hmm | July 20, 2011 3:49 AMReply

    How the hell can someone hate on this yet like Raimi's film?

    POV is badass

  • PapushiSun | July 20, 2011 3:44 AMReply

    So they've decided to darker and edgier?
    That's disappointing.

  • Sara | July 20, 2011 3:30 AMReply

    I will watch... but I don't think will be that bigger. And this POV looks like a game. Looks little boring. I like Emma Stone, I like Andrew Garfield....

  • KT | July 20, 2011 3:17 AMReply

    Someone needs to put this character to rest. Hasn't the world had enough Spiderman for a lifetime?

  • chaz bono | July 20, 2011 3:14 AMReply

    wow, this looks....awful.

    interesting choice to just show the rehash of the origin and then a CGI POV shot, especially since the spin about this movie was that they use live stunts and less CGI.

  • rotch | July 20, 2011 3:08 AMReply

    Am I the only one who finds it really boring that it's an origin story again. Reboot- wise, they could've taken the Incredible Hulk rout and not re-tell the origin.

    And yes, I was also hoping for a lighter tone.

  • Mark | July 20, 2011 3:03 AMReply

    Looks much better than the tacky Raimi movies. I'm in.

  • Kevin Jagernauth | July 20, 2011 3:00 AMReply

    No, it's not deleted. It just takes a billion years to load. Patience.

  • Adam Siennica | July 20, 2011 2:58 AMReply

    I think that someone posted it a little too early on movie list :) Because it has been deleted 0_o It looks ok. Waiting for HD.

  • BuntyHoven | July 20, 2011 2:53 AMReply

    The POV thing reminds me a LOT of the 3D Spider-Man ride they have at Universal Studios in Florida.

  • Edward Davis | July 20, 2011 2:47 AMReply

    For the record, this Playlist writer likes it too. I like the darker mood and don't mind the emo-ness. I'm not really down with the gimmicky POV thing and hope it doesn't permeate the entire film.

  • BuntyHoven | July 20, 2011 2:45 AMReply

    MOOOOOOOODY. I thought Webb was gonna give it a light touch? Looks emo as hell. Does seem pointless to go over the origin again. That said, people do like that sort of thing. Designing the costume,etc.

  • cirkusfolk | July 20, 2011 2:41 AMReply

    I think it looked pretty good. I don't know about tailoring to a younger audience though. Wasn't one of the points of the reboot to make it darker and grittier? The cast alone should make it better than the previous trilogy. Those films contain some of the worst acting ever.

  • jon | July 20, 2011 2:40 AMReply

    this looks boring....the lab set looks just like the raimi movie....

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