The Amazing Spider-Man is in theaters now, for everyone who thought there was a need for another Spider-Man origin story just 10 years after the last Spider-Man origin film. The verdict: It's actually good.
The film's cast combines the heft of Martin Sheen and Sally Field as Peter Parker's aunt and uncle with the young fresh faces of star Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker/Spidey and Emma Stone as love interest Gwen Stacy. The relationship between Peter and his uncle, one that proves the inciting incident for his heroism, gets more development here than in the previous Spider-Man film. Denis Leary has a nice turn as Stacy's father, who's also the chief of police.
Superhero films are often defined by their villain, but while there's certainly a villain here in the Lizard, the movie takes its time getting there. The first hour or so is spent building up to Peter as Spider-Man, making you care about the man before he puts on the mask. The shadow of Spider-Man archvillain the Green Goblin hangs over the film due to its inclusion of shadowy corporation OsCorp, with the Green Goblin/Norman Osborn alluded to, but he never stands revealed. The Lizard himself is a tragic villain and proves a worthy adversary, challenging Spider-Man both physically and mentally.
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- LAPD's facial recognition software might not be as amazing as some spy movies, but it's still pretty great. (Hat tip: Los Angeles, I'm Yours)
- If Homeland Security comes after me, I will assume it's due to something I've jokingly tweeted. I haven't threatened to "destroy America" yet, as a couple 20-something Brits did before coming to the States and promptly being interrogated, placed in holding cells, then sent back to their native land.
- In other flight misadventures: A Southwest flight from L.A. to Denver accidentally knocked over a light pole on its way to the gate. Wait a second, I fly Southwest. Uh oh.
- The new Spider-Man movie isn't out until July, but they're already trying to get the buzz going. They're promoting the movie on Twitter and hosting preview screenings around the country, including here in L.A., this weekend. Good luck scoring a ticket, though; preview passes from the official site are already sold out.
- Moby has a new blog! About... L.A. architecture? OK, sure, Moby. (Hat tip: Los Angeles, I'm Yours)
- Kermit and Miss Piggy fire back at Fox News after accusations that the new Muppets movie exhibits liberal bias. (Hat tip: Indecision Forever)
- Anyone else as interested in the weird overly hyped career of Lana Del Rey, which I think both peaked and crashed with her recent Saturday Night Live performance, should check out this Lana Del Rey timeline from Vulture.
- Sadly, there's no Ferris Bueller's Day Off sequel in the works, but there's a Super Bowl ad that plays off Matthew Broderick's classic role, with Broderick playing hooky from a movie set a la Bueller. It's debuted early online. (It also includes my Twitter pal/actor/comic book journalist Mike Romo!) (Hat tip: iFanboy)
- Artist Danny Haas does some great iconographic art featuring various superheroes (including a great piece of Superman art he kindly let me use for my Geek Pilgrims podcast), and he's back taking on female icons like Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Catwoman.
- Comedians Tim & Eric's new film, "Tim & Eric's Billion Dollar Movie," apparently didn't please Sundance audiences. About a third of the audience walked out. Oops. You'll have your chance to see if it's worth walking out of on March 2.
- Twitter, apparently inspired by the Laser Cats videos from Saturday Night Live, produced this intentionally cheesy video intended to sell you on the idea of working for Twitter. (Hat tip: (The Daily What)