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June 30, 2017

Spider-Man 2 (2004) --- "Attaching Robotic Arms In A Freak Accident Can Prove To Have Homicidal Tendencies."

Plot Summary
It's been two years since Peter Parker transformed into Spider-Man, and he is still trying to balance life perfectly: The girl he loves (Mary Jane) is engaged to someone else. His grades are slipping and the newspaper Daily Bugle is attacking him viciously, claiming that Spider-Man is a criminal. His friendship with Harry Osborn is at risk, as the young Harry is frustrated with Spider-Man getting away with his father's death. And if this wasn't enough for the superhero, a new enemy is in town. Dr. Otto Octavius is involved in a freak scientific accident and becomes the dangerous Doctor Octopus, Dok Ock. Peter guesses it might just be time for Spider-Man to return, but would he act upon it? 

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Hello, Movie Buffs! 
     In Spider- Man (2002), Director Sam Raimi proved that he could take a comic book story and translate it reasonably to the screen. In Spider-Man 2 (2017) Raimi proves that he can make a highly original story and at the same time make it entertaining. Spider-Man 2 transcends beyond the boundaries of the fist installment by taking premises from the Spider-Man (2002) and making improvements; a richly character-driven movie with a very conflicted hero. For the first time, audiences get to see the emotion behind the facade of our beloved web-slinging hero as Spider-Man 2 plunges into a world of shadows and off colors. This rarely happens with sequels, much less do they surpass the original installment – Terminator 2 and Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back are part of those few exceptions – and focuses on a broader audience.
     Spider-Man 2 has a lot more humor and emotion than the first installment. Tobey Maguire delivers a standout performance by conveying the film's heart through a look or a gesture, however, I found that his most heart-wrenchingly performances are done through his character’s hesitations. Since Peter Parker is so used to having quick reflexes as Spider-Man when he has to slow down and focus on what is going on around him, we are struck instantly by his conflicting emotions. Another great character is the new villain, Doc Ock (Alfred MolinaChocolate, The Da Vinci Code), who has four frighteningly powerful artificially intelligent (A.I) arms welded to his spine after a disaster with his life's work. The disaster not only ruins his life’s work but the A.I arms seem to be fused to his brain, placating his desires to not want his life's work to be a failure and he will try to achieve that desire no matter what. Molina’s performance was both menacing and subtle, although the character isn't always directly in control of his actions Molina's performance makes the character highly credible and undoubtedly the most interesting character in the film. J.K. Simmons, who returns in his role as J. Jonah Jameson, is absolutely hilarious and he truly embodies the spirit of his character. In addition, the effects have improved since the first installment and I found Doc Ock to be much better suited for flashy moves and cool fights than the Green Goblin. This time around the computer effects have become slightly more subtle making the film seem more polished and while there were still a few scenes where the CGI was obvious, the effects overall have improved dramatically and received a well-earned Oscar.
     Overall, Sam Raimi does a knock-out job in knowing when to hold onto a character's face long enough as well as swinging the camera along with our hero to give the audience the exhilaration of flight. One of the most surprising aspects of this film is the depths it possesses and perhaps that is the best part about it. By allowing a series to expand we can expect more depth out of the sequels rather than simply compliment the original. The message that Spider-Man 2 delivers can also be viewed as a question; in order to do the right thing, does it mean that we have to put what we want the most on the back burner?

“We need a hero, courageous sacrificing people, setting examples for all of us. Everybody loves a hero, people line up for 'em, cheer for them, scream their names, and years later tell how they stood in the rain for hours just to get a glimpse of the one who told them to HOLD ON a second longer. I believe there's a hero in all of us, that keeps us honest, gives us strength, makes us noble. And finally gets us to die with pride. Even though sometimes we have to be steady and give up the thing we want most, even our dreams.”
- Aunt May

Final Vote
Worth Seeing:  4.5 of 5 star
Worth Buying:  4.5 of 5 stars

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Movies Similar 
 Ant-Man (2015)
Avenger (2012)
Avenger: Age of Ultron (2015)
Captain America: First Avenger (2011)
Captain America: Winter Soldier (2014)
Captain America: Civil War (2016)
Daredevil (2003)
Fantastic Four (2005)
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)
Iron Man (2008)
Iron Man 2 (2010)
Iron Man 3 (2013)
Spider-Man 1 (2002)
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

Cast & Crew
 Directed by:  Sam Raimi
Writing Credits:
(Screenplay) Alvin Sargent
(Marvel comic book) Stan Lee and Steve Ditko
Produced by:
Avi Arad               ---   producer
Joseph M. Caracciolo  ---            executive producer
Grant Curtis         ---   co-producer
Lorne Orleans      ---   producer (IMAX version)
Stan Lee               ---   executive producer
Laura Ziskin         ---   producer
Kevin Feige          ---   executive producer
Music by: Danny Elfman
Cinematography by: Bill Pope
Film Editing by: Bob Murawski
Production Design by: Neil Spisak

Tobey Maguire                  ---           Spider-Man / Peter Parker
Kirsten Dunst                   ---           Mary Jane Watson
James Franco                   ---           Harry Osborn
Alfred Moina                     ---           Doc Ock / Dr. Otto Octavius
Rosemary Harris             ---           May Parker
J.K. Simmons                    ---           J. Jonah Jameson
Donna Murphy                 ---           Rosalie Octavius
Daniel Gillies                     ---           John Jameson
Dylan Baker                       ---           Dr. Curt Connors
Bill Nunn                            ---           Joseph 'Robbie' Robertson
Vanessa Ferlito                ---           Louise
Aasif Mandvi                     ---           Mr. Aziz
Cliff Robertson                 ---           Ben Parker
Ted Raimi                           ---           Hoffman
Elizabeth Banks               ---           Miss Brant
Bruce Campbell                ---           Snooty Usher
Gregg Edelman                 ---           Dr. Davis
Elya Baskin                        ---           Mr. Ditkovich
Mageina Tovah                 ---           Ursula
Daniel Dae Kim                ---           Raymond
Hal Sparks                         ---           Elevator Passenger
Joel McHale                      ---           Mr. Jacks
Stan Lee                              ---           Man Dodging Debris
Kelly Connell                     ---           Dr. Isaacs
Willem Dafoe                    ---           Green Goblin / Norman Osborn 

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