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Laramie Movie Scope:
The Amazing Spider-man

Bitten and smitten into a webby spectacle

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by Patrick Ivers, Film Critic
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(2012) A dozen or so years after Uncle Ben (Martin Sheen) and Aunt Mary (Sally Field) became his guardians following his parents' sudden and absolute disappearance, Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) is a nerdish senior at Midtown Science High School in Queens with a hobby of photography. Inside a leather briefcase formerly belong to his father, given him by Uncle Ben, Peter discovers an old newspaper photograph of parent Richard Parker beside Dr Curt Connors (Rhys Infans) of OsCorp along with a folder containing some of his father's work, including an algorithm for cross-species genetics.

His curiosity piqued, Peter goes to the corporate headquarters where he encounters his brilliant and beautiful classmate Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) leading a group of interns through the research facility. Emma had expressed sympathy (stupid but brave) for Peter's taking on Flash, a jock humiliating another student, who then pummeled and repeatedly kicked the intruder.

Entering a restricted room where thousands of spiders are spinning out protein fiber with the tensile strength of high-grade steel inside an enclosure, Peter accidentally disrupts the confining system, releasing the genetically-enhanced arachnids.

Bitten - Peter rapidly develops incredible reflexes, a sticky grip, and extraordinary strength - and smitten - the new chemistry with Gwen has the teenager tongue-tied - Peter begins an adventure that takes him into an amazing webby world of visual spectacle directed by Marc Webb with lots of comic book coincidences as might be expected from an action film based on Marvel comic books by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, adapted to the screen by James Vanderbilt (story), Alvin Sargent, and Steve Kloves, aurally supported by James Horner's muscular musical score.

Uncle Ben emphatically makes clear to Peter that he must move from getting revenge against a high-school bully to accepting personal responsibility for his gifts and actions; after all, though Ben isn't fully aware of the implications of his exhortations, Peter is personally liable for all that takes place.

Donning a red-and-blue costume (created by Cirque du Soleil) and devising wrist shooters containing cartridges of the especial strong and sticky spider silk, Spider-man initially pursues a thug out of vengeance, but eventually he broadens his scope, taking on anyone acting lawlessly, though NYPD's Capt Stacy (Denis Leary) regards the masked vigilante as a public nuisance rather than a potential cooperating public servant.

Meanwhile, Dr Connor, missing his right arm, while experimenting with reptile regeneration, using the decay-rate algorithm Peter has shared, makes himself the first human to test the serum when he's pressed - the head of the company is critically ill - to hurry into human trials with patients at the veterans hospital for subjects.

Secrets (which have a cost) and promises here are not meant to be kept. From the sewers of New York City to the canyons of its skyscrapers, watch and marvel at the fantastic digital display as Spider-man takes on Lizard-man. Don't miss the final scene - this feature film is intended to be but the first of another franchise - hidden within the end credits. Also recommended, see The Math of The Amazing Spider-man from Emory University.

Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in video and/or DVD format, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 2012 Patrick Ivers. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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Patrick Ivers can be reached via e-mail at nora's email address at juno. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)