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The Amazing Spider-Man (**)
directed by Marc Webb
written by James Vanderbilt and Alvin Sargent and Steve Kloves,
based on the comic book by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko
Principal Cast
Andrew Garfield -- Spider-Man / Peter Parker
Emma Stone -- Gwen Stacy
Rhys Ifans -- The Lizard / Dr. Curt Connors
Denis Leary -- Captain Stacy
Martin Sheen -- Uncle Ben
Sally Field -- Aunt May
Irrfan Khan -- Rajit Ratha
Campbell Scott -- Richard Parker
Embeth Davidtz -- Mary Parker
Ratings are based on Rick's four star system.
One star - the commercials are more entertaining than the viewing.
Two stars - watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars - good solid entertainment.
Four stars - you never dreamed viewing could be this good.
Past Feature Reviews
A review by Rick Norwood

The Amazing Spider-Man

spoiler alert

The big trouble with the new Spider-Man is that we've seen it all before, and Sam Raimi, director of the movie Spider-Man, did it better. Also: are we really supposed to believe that there are giant mechanical cranes lined up on Broadway, with operators standing by where they can reach their machines on a few minutes notice? I could go on about the illogic in the script, but... "Say no more." "I can say no more."

The wrong Stacy dies in the end, as those of us who read the comic book know.

It's a good thing the Summer started well, with Joss Whedon's The Avengers. It is hard to believe, but the producers rejected Joss Whedon's script for Wonder Woman in favor of a script by Green Lantern scribe Michael Goldenberg. I can only assume Joss provided too much character, and not enough star-spangled tits and ass. But I digress. It's a good thing the Summer started well, because I haven't thought much of any of the films that came out in July, despite the gonzo box office.

Martin Sheen makes a very good Uncle Ben (though every time I hear that name I think of an old food product called Uncle Ben's Converted Rice). Sally Field looks nothing at all like Aunt May.

Steve Kloves wrote all but one of the Harry Potter films, as well as the Harry Potter adventure ride at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando, which at least one reviewer calls the best adventure ride in the world. I had hoped for better from him here. I'll just assume his contribution was limited to the good bits.

The credit cookie gives us a glimpse of the villain of the sequel, hidden in shadows.

Copyright © 2012 Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon. Visit his web site at

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