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A Fan's Dream Come True
Ryan30 June 2004
I went to the midnight show last night and was completely blown away !! I am 30 years old and had begun reading the Amazing Spider-Man back when I was 11 and leaving the theater last night, I felt like I was a kid again- I was amazed, I was in awe, I really felt... satisfied.

Every scene crackled. There was an energy, there was an effort put into every moment of the movie. No scene went on too long, no plot holes fell through. It was the comic, come alive.

Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire did a great job of making Peter Parker sympathetic, you feel for him, you wince with him, he is the boy, becoming a man, and you watch it, and you keep watching it.

Even as a long-time fan who knew where some of the story lines were going- with MJ, with Harry Osborne- to see HOW the movie chose to play out these stories, provided great surprises for me, I almost wished I didn't know... I can't wait to see the reactions of my friends who haven't followed the Spider-man comics, the twist of the story and the hints at what is to come...

A great movie. Great fun. Great story. Great action. A blockbuster movie. You leave the theater, definitely feeling like you got your money's worth !
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jamiemarks-129 September 2009
My presumptions of a sequel to a successful original are that they are worn out and are a desperate attempt to cash in on it's predecessor. Look no further for conclusive evidence with the terrible Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen to know what I'm talking about.

But every now and again a sequel comes along that just simply changes your perceptions and gives you faith in a continuing franchise where the sequel is just as or in the case of Spiderman 2 better than it's predecessor.

Toby Maquire, Kirsten Dunst and James Franco return with director Sam Raimi who has done a terrific job in making this for me one of the best sequels of all time.

One of the successes Spiderman 2 has is the depth of the characters and stories as there is more than one strand. Toby Maquire has the same natural ability which he possessed in the first film to accurately convey the character of Peter Parker who struggles with his feelings for Mary Jane who becomes frustrated that he can't return her feelings for him, to his fractured friendship with Harry Osborne who harbours a deep grudge against Spiderman to trying to balance his life as superhero, student and employee and struggling with his Aunt May over Uncle Ben's death to finally battling the new villain Oto Octavious played memorably by Alfred Molina and all these story strands thread there way through two hours of pure entertainment.

With the main story and these sub-stories the film could have become confusing and meaningless but thanks to the sublime artistry from Sam Raimi, it flows beautifully and never loses sight of itself.

Which goes to say the acting is as brilliant from the main cast which helps the film has more exploration and depth and the special effects this time round are flawless and much improved on the first.

This has everything for the comic fans and those who just want to be entertained of action (which there is plenty of particularly towards the end) drama, romance and humour mostly from JK Simmons who when he was on screen I was laughing out loud.

Credit goes to all involved and I very much look forward to Spiderman 3.
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Outstanding sequel.
kirk-24615 July 2009
The first and third 'Spider-Man' movies were simply fantastic.But it gets even better with 'Spider-Man 2'. It's full of action, has plenty of adventure, and is full of award winning special effects.Like any other super hero sequel, there's always a new villain.The villains name in 'Spider-Man 2' is Dr. Octopus.AKA Doc Ock.He has 4 mechanical tentacles that can flip cars and throw people at great distances.Does he remind you of anything? Of course he does.What does he remind you of? An Octopus... Duh.It may sound kind of stupid, but Doc Ock's character actually helps the movie become a 2 hour roller-coaster ride of a movie.Just remember that Spider-Man can do whatever a spider can.
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Takes every element from the first film and improves on it!
MinorityReporter27 April 2005
It only happens very rarely that a sequel surpasses the original (Terminator 2, Star Wars Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back) and after the relative disappointment that was the original my expectations for the second film in the series had decreased. When I finally did sit down in the cinema to see this film I was a bit anxious. But my anxiety was quickly put to rest because Spider-Man 2 took the premises from the first film and improved upon them all. The first Spider-Man film a well meaning picture but quite as good as it could have been the second film is a good film for both hardcore fans like myself and the broader audience.

First off, the acting in the second film has improved tremendously. Tobey Maguire feels more right in the second film. I found him quite shallow in the first film but in the second one he seems to have developed more depth. More nuances have found their way into his acting in the second film making the character more believable and less of a square. Kirsten Dunst is never a good actress but I found her a little less annoying in this film than in the first and therefore I felt I could tolerate her presence. James Franco is decent but still has a problem with portraying nuances which basically means that in order for his performance to work he has exaggerate every emotion his character feels. As it is with most superhero movies the villain is the most interesting character and Sam Raimi couldn't have picked a better actor than Alfred Molina to play Otto Octavius aka Doc Ock. I'm a big fan of Willem Dafoe but I didn't like his performance in the first Spider-Man film very much and therefore I was delighted when Alfred Molina turned out to be a far better villain than Willem was. His performance was both menacing and nuanced and even though the character isn't always directly in control of his actions (making him somewhat misinterpreted) Molina's performance makes the character highly credible and undoubtedly the most interesting character in the film.

The effects have improved which is logical considering that it has been 2 years since the first film hit the cinemas. Also I found that Doc Ock was much better suited for flashy moves and cool fights than Green Goblin ever was so in that aspect the film is far superior to the first film as well. Especially the train fight will, I think, go into history as one of the best hero/villain showdowns in history if not the best. The computer effects have become slightly more subtle making the film seem more polished. There were still a few unfortunate scenes were the CGI was pretty obvious but overall the effects have improved dramatically and received a well earned Oscar.

The musical score continues in the same epic fashion from the first and Danny Elfman does an exceptional job as usual. The score is both thrilling and epic but it is also subtle when it has to be and that aspect of the score works wonderfully as well. Elfman has some experience in super hero scoring (having done both Batman and Hulk aside from Spider-Man) and it shows as the score is very appropriate and fitting. Two thumbs up on the music.

In terms of story telling the second film is also far better than the first. I found the first film to be very unoriginal in terms of its story. Anyone who has just an ounce of knowledge into the myth of Spider-Man knows the story beforehand and thus the film becomes very predictable and boring quite frankly. The second film did not have this problem. It was a breath of fresh air. The story seems to flow more from the heart this time around. Raimi proved in the first film that he could take a situation from the comics and translate it reasonably to the screen. In the second film he proves that he can make a highly original story as well and make it entertaining. It should also be added that Spider-Man 2 has a lot more of the humor like the kind that appears in the comics. J.K. Simmons who was one of the elements in the first film returns in his role and he is absolutely hilarious. He truly embodies the spirit of J. Jonah Jameson. There is also a very funny elevator scene which should be mentioned.

Some people complained that Raimi has turned mainstream with the Spider-Man films. That is a load of rubbish and Raimi proves it by adding some elements from his cult films, the Evil Dead series. He even lets Bruce Campbell tell Spider-Man off as if to symbolize that he hasn't forgotten where he came from.

All in all Spider-Man 2 surpasses the first film in the franchise in almost every way imaginable Spider-Man 2 is twice as engaging, entertaining and heartfelt than the first film in the series.

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Truly Outdoes the First
gigan-9224 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Wow. That's all I can manage to say after watching this film, wow. This movie really blew me away in all its aspects. The performances were top rate, especially Alfred Molina's portrayal of Dr. Otto Octavius. He really knows how to play that comic book villain with a sense of understanding so to speak. Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst romance is a truly interesting and different outlook on being a super hero. We often dream of being super heroes, and yet here we see just the opposite. The audience feels Peter's conflict between protecting the innocent and letting his own life suffer or letting it go and living the life he's always wanted. To get everything he ever desired, he must give up his double-life. Despite whether he gives up being Spider-man or not, he will still forever have to deal with the complication of his dying friendship with Harry Osborn( James Franco). Franco is my favorite actor in this film, a young millionaire dealing with the death of his father, his friend being the only one who can help him bring the murder to justice. And yet, unbeknownst to him, his friend is actually the wall crawler himself. A extremely well done screenplay. Sam Raimi adds touches of humor to the story and it blends in quite well.

The characters are just so well done and intertwined with one another. Sam Raimi makes more than just a comic blockbuster but a well-defined drama of sorts. Even the villain has his moments.

The action is unbelievable and truly out does the first. Future superhero films will have to work hard to surpass what is seen here. The train chase is by far my favorite scene in the film, truly adrenaline pumping!! Audiences do have to wait a bit, but once a fight starts prepare to be simply amazed. Not only this, but the score is magnificent!! I love Danny Elfman!! It captures each moment exactly the way audiences envision it. Another sequel is surely on the way. This is definitely one of my favorite films of 2004, putting other comic book films of the same year to shame, such as "Blade: Trinity".
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A Flawless Super Hero Movie
john_murdoch200230 June 2004
This is what a good summer movie should be.

Spider-Man 2 transcends the boundaries of being just another comic book movie to being a richly character driven movie with a very conflicted hero. Here, for the first time, we see the actual emotion behind the facade of the hero behind the mask. Gone is the richly colorful look of the first part, here in Spider-Man 2, we are plunged into a world of shadows and off colors.

Picking up two years after the first Spider-Man left off, Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) has his hands full with three full-time jobs. He is going to school full time, he is working full time to pay off his rent, and he is a hero always on call whenever he hears a siren. Not to mention, we see the emotional toll that has been taken on him, his only surviving family member, his Aunt May (Rosemary Harris), has become consumed with grief and loss over the death of her husband (incidentally, creating Spider-Man in the first part), Peter's friend Norman Osborne (James Franco) is now at odds with him since he has become consumed with revenge over Spider-Man killing his father (the Green Goblin), and his love affair with Mary Jane-Watson (Kirsten Dunst) is slowly being extinguished because he is never there for her to return the feelings she has for him. And this is all in the first fifteen minutes of the film.

As Spider-Man, Parker is even in danger of losing his powers as his exhaustion slowly begins to take over. Is it medical or is it because he has stretched himself too thin? Eventually, Peter decides to give up being Spider-Man to finally bring peace into his life. There is a brilliant sequence in this film when we see Parker returning to his alter-ego from the first part before the mutated spider bite as he puts on his glasses again, clouding his vision to the world around him. When he sees someone being beaten up in an alley, he turns around to walk away. When the familiar sirens fly past him again, he just eats a hot dog. In short, Parker has finally succumbed to being a New Yorker.

In the midst of all of this, we see the creation of a new villain, this time in the form of a deranged scientist named Doctor Otto Octavius (Alfred Molina), who has four frighteningly powerful arms welded to his spine after a disaster with his life's work. This disaster not only turns the Doctor into Dr. Octopus (Doc Ock as the papers call him), but the artificially intelligent arms seemed fuse to his id, placating his desires to not want his life's work to be a failure. Doc Ock will try again at the expense of anyone around him.

The standout here is Tobey Maguire, who can convey the film's entire heart with a look or a gesture, but is most heart-wrenchingly done in his hesitations. For a man so used to having quick reflexes, when he has to slow down and realize what is going on around him, we are instantly in his head. Maguire also has to command the screen as Spider-Man and convince the audience that he can stand up to someone like Octavius and not seem fantastic.

Sam Raimi also does a knock-out job as well, knowing when to hold on a character's face long enough or swinging the camera along with Spider-Man to give the audience the exhilaration of flight. Raimi is more than competent enough to give this movie the look and feel of a moving comic book and by utilizing his most signature camera shot (zooming into and out of the character's eyes), the audience is invited to live for a moment in the tights of a superhero.

Spider-Man 2 has so many great messages to be heard in this film, the best of which seems to draw both Peter and Octavius together in the end: In order for the right thing to be done, does it mean that we have to put away what we want the most? In both cases, there are some strong arguments and that is what makes this movie such a surprise is the depth that it possesses. Seemingly, we have entered the bizarro world of sequels, where they seem to surpass the original (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Toy Story 2, etc) and Spider-Man 2 definitely joins these ranks. Perhaps in allowing a series to expand rather than compliment the original, we can expect more depth out of movies, which has been as equally absent in this day and age as heroes as Spider-Man 2 also suggests.
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~ MORE Web-Slinging Fun ~
Aysen086 January 2005
Normally sequels are hugely disappointing in comparison to the original film. So it's hard to believe that they could even come close to topping this movies original, alas they do!

Picking up where the first movie starts off and introducing several new comic book regulars, we bypass the history establishing story of the original and head straight into what life is like for Peter Parker being a college student, Spiderman, and trying to hold down a job.

This time Spidey must face the likes of Doc Ock, portrayed by Alfred Molina (he's come a long way since Indiana Jones cameos) excellently. Once again they couldn't have picked a better actor to portray the villain Spiderman has to face.

Spiderman must take out Doc, save the city, save the girl, and still get good grades.

The action sequences once again are entrancing and the story is well written. Kudos once again to the actors involved and Sam Raimi on creating another hit. Looking very much forward to Spiderman 3. Another hit I'm sure if 1 & 2 are any indications.
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See this one.
Bill9 July 2005

I had low expectations after Spiderman 1. Spider Guy 2 is a blowout, take no prisoners, roller coaster ride of a film. It's got it all: great story line, edge of your seat action, romance, humor, fine acting, break neck pace,….well, you get the idea.

This film is for the whole family. Great chase scenes, crashes, and special effects for the guys. Romance, and a tender love story for the gals. Comic book touches for the kids. It just works so well on every level.

McGuire and Dunst have a chemistry that reminded me of Niles and Daphne in "Frasier." They loved each other from afar, and could not communicate their feelings to each other. The romantic tension was exquisite. So it is here with McGuire and Dunst. You know they have to get together at some point, but the long and difficult road is a journey we enjoy.

The villain is definitely top shelf. Without revealing too much, suffice it to say that he's bad enough, scary enough, and convincing enough to make the film work on the plot level.

The special effects are well done, especially where Spiderman has to save passengers on a speeding train.

Spiderman has self doubts, begins to lose his powers, and longs to be Peter Parker instead of a superhero. He struggles with his choices in life, as we all do. He makes difficult choices, and learns that truth and integrity are rewarded, even when the results are very painful for the aunt who has replaced his mother.

You might see films with a deeper message, but you won't see many films that combine action, romance, and meaning in one slick package. See this one. In fact, you may want to buy this one for your DVD library.
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Quite surprisingly good
kyndby9 July 2004
Well I saw the first and Thought .. OK, nice movie, but nothing special. So I wasn't looking much forward to the second one. Boy was I wrong.. The second one has it all... And I mean all. Suspense, romance, action and some quite nice Effects. Tobey Maguire is performing well, and Kirsten Dunst... wauw.... she is breathtaking...And only 22, so we can only hope to see more of her the coming years. Last but not least, Alfred Molina, who is the bad guy. He is very convincing and very very nasty. The computer-effects used are better than I have ever seen. Now you get the feeling of flying. I recommend all to see this movie, yes girls too. Remember.. movies are best in the cinema!
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Well worth the wait, what a movie!
mfoley8430 June 2004
Spider-Man 2 picks up where the original film left off, this time showing the more difficult hardships of being a superhero. Standing in the way is Dr. Otto Octavius(Doc Ock) a brilliant scientist whose fusion experiment goes awry at a demonstration Peter attends.

The story, and characters are fleshed out more this time out, as well as the effects. Kirsten Dunst is more convincing as MJ, she seemed a little flat in the role last time. Here she, like the rest of the cast, do a convincing job. The top performance has to go to Alfred Molina. In the short screen time Otto has before he becomes a diabolical powerhouse supervillain, he is an endearing, likable person. Spider-Man 2 also offers more confidence in it's story telling. The "raindrops" sequence is an evident example. Not afraid to go full nine, this movie is the definitive comic book movie, possessing action, drama, comedy, and message(without being too preachy). Director Sam Raimi and crew really nailed it this time around. Be sure to check out comic artist Alex Ross' paintings spliced in the opening credits, entailing the events of the first film. A great opening to a great film.
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A Nearly Flawless Super-Hero Movie
thesar-215 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Despite #1 being a very good movie, 'Spider-Man 2' falls under the "Surprisingly Better" sequels. Now, that's not to say, #2 didn't have its problems. It did, including one lingering from #1 (pacing,) but overall, they moved forward with the series. And in high-speed.

Already established web-slinger, do-gooder, Spider-Man continues his plight in saving kids and punishing criminals all the while getting beaten up (emotionally) as Peter Parker. In fact, they show more than enough of his beat-downs. We get it already – he's a nerd that everyone takes advantage of.

At any rate, he's still pursuing both MJ (Dunst,) who's now engaged to a more "stable" astronaut and Dr. Otto Octavius all the while, he's avoiding best friend (of Pete)/mortal enemy (of Spidey) Harry (Franco.) To make matters worse, his mother's losing her home, Pete's losing his apartment, Doc Ock's becoming an eight-limbed crazed scientist and he's getting Spidey-blocked, or unable to use his powers as his mind's overloaded.

There's actually a lot more, but that's for the viewer to see. Don't want to give away everything. Suffice to say, Pete's got a lot on his mind. Thankfully, they've up'd the villain-scale with Dr. Octopus played brilliantly by (unknown to me at the time) Alfred Molina. He ranks as one of the best on-screen villains of all time. His quiet tone, brilliant mind and attitude and mannerisms, especially being attached to 4 additional limbs, made him quite believable despite his appearance. Side Note: Doc Ock was always my favorite Spider-Man villain, and since they did a great job, this is my favorite Spider-Man movie, by a long shot.

Hopefully most people picked up on the operation scene, when they tried to rid Dr. Octavius of his metal contraptions and how it was an absolute perfect homage to Raimi's previous work. That was so 'Evil Dead' that, though it was hard to watch, especially the nail scrape, I was so impressed that he came back to his roots vs. the main-stream 'Spider-Man' had become. If you don't believe me, split screen the chainsaw with 'Evil Dead 2' and 'Army of Darkness.' There are a lot of excellent action sequences, tension and fun to be had in 'Spider-Man 2.' (The train scene, itself, is worth admission.) Nevertheless, the movie should've been cut back some – pacing is such a problem for Raimi and enough already with on again/off again relationship with MJ & Parker.

In addition, we get the multiple "Should I be a 'superhero' or not" long scenes. Superman did that, but only briefly in another superhero part 2: 'Superman II.' That's old and wears heavily. Thankfully, they move past it and you can enjoy the movie. Of course, if you can get past now multiple people knowing Spidey's true identity, that is.

I cringe that the movie critic I respect the most (Roger Ebert,) called this the best superhero movie he's ever seen. I wouldn't go that far (I'll always be partial to 'Superman: The Movie.' Heck, a few years later 'The Dark Knight' blew this one away) but I would say it's absolutely recommended. Especially since we didn't have to wait too long to see Spider-Man swing, unlike part one.
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The Best Comic Book Movie. Ever!
wwalter19591 November 2007
This movie is by far one of the best movies of all time! The movie had pretty much everything you need for a prefect film: Script: 10/10! OUTSTANDING! Director Sam Raimi did an excellent job giving full attention to the Dilemma of Peter Parker. He balances all the action, comedy, and drama perfectly.

Acting: 10/10. Tobey Maguire was very good being a character that doubts himself and has to choose between wanting a normal life and wanting to live as a superhero. Kirsten Dunst is very good in her roll as Mary Jane Watson. James Franco is amazing as the bitter Harry Osborn who is seeking revenge on Spider-Man. And Alfred Molina as Doc Ock is fantastic. He was an excellent choice as one of my favorite characters from the comic.

Action Sequences: 10/10. This movie has some amazing action scenes with Doc Ock on the building. But the best effect in the film is the fight between Spidey and Doc Ock on the side of the train.

Comedy: 8/10. J.K. Simmons is amazing as J. Jonah Jameson and adds a lot to the film. Ted Raimi is also very funny. The Raindrops sequence in the movie had a lot of laughs when you see Peter Parker as the nerdiest kid in the world.

This movie has everything you could ever want out of a summer blockbuster. And as far as staying faithful to the comic book 10/10.

PERFECT!!! 10/10
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"I believe there's a hero in all of us..."
classicsoncall28 July 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Well I just need to know one thing - who thought it would be a good idea to have a seventy seven year old grandmother hanging from Doc Ock's tentacle as he clambered up a city skyscraper? Seriously, didn't anyone consider that she might have had a HEART ATTACK?!?! Come on, and then she hung from a ledge using a wooden cane? I'd like to know where in the realm of remote possibility this could happen. As the Marvel geek opined, 'Nuff said'.

Don't get me too wrong. I enjoyed the flick well enough, but these implausible things cross my mind when I watch a film, even if it's a comic book story. Say now, was Doc Ock (Alfred Molina) incredibly cool as a villain, or just incredibly lame? It could go both ways you know. I guess the Octopus connection works because he had his own four limbs and then the mechanical jobbers. On the plus side, the CGI necessary to pull off his character with all that wall climbing and demolition was pretty extraordinary. But cheesy too, I think he was kind of goofy as a Spidey villain.

Some other things bothered me too. Like the garbage man turning in the Spider-Man uniform he found in an alley and J.Jonah Jameson (J.K. Simmons, hey, they both have the same first name) going front page with it. Couldn't that have been a replica uniform or a kid's Halloween costume? Why get all excited about that? But it did serve it's purpose for that great tongue in cheek 'He's Back' headline in the Daily Bugle with Spidey bursting through it for his comeback. That was pretty cool.

Not cool was using 'Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head' when Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) has one of his many moments of angst in the picture. That belongs solely in "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid". The comic books got by for a long time with the characterization of Peter/Spider-Man as a conflicted young teenager trying to find himself, but those days are pretty much over. Then again, I was just becoming a teenager when Stan Lee created Spidey, so maybe I'm too old to appreciate teenage angst anymore. If I'm wrong I apologize.

Hey, I did get a kick out of Peter asking Aunt May (Rosemary Harris) about his comic book collection. Mine is part of that same old story - Grandma threw all of mine away when I went away to college. There was a Justice League #1 and a Green Lantern #5 in there, maybe a little beat up but it came as a blow to the system. But after almost forty years I'm just about over it.

Anyway, I don't mean to be too harsh on the picture, just trying to have a little fun with my review. Glad to see Stan Lee show up again, this time saving someone from falling concrete when Doc Ock and Spidey have at it twenty stories above. When Spider-Man finally defeats his foe, I thought it somewhat humorous that he used a bit of that Sixties Star Trek logic to drive some sense into Octavius. You'd need to see Captain Kirk in action to understand that one.

So I guess the wedding's off, right?
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A great entertaining movie
the_crowvo24 July 2005
I'm not a spider man fan, but I started to become one after the first movie appear. The second has some things that were missing in the first, like the appreciation for spider man's work. If I was a super hero I would like to have some consideration for putting wrong things right, so I think the worst spider man enemy is the press. This is just a movie, but in real life the press has also the power to turn a good man in "the bad guy". The other thing that I loved in the movie was the combination of the psychological with the physical aspects, where the first ones overcome the second, like regular people. The mind will always defeat the body and super heroes are no exception. The end couldn't be better, super hero or not, he has also his needs that can't be ignored. People say that behind a good man there's always a great woman, spider man has Kirsten Dunst, sorry, Mary Jane. That's all folks.
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Spider-man 2 A Much Better Than Expected Sequel
tburke859 June 2009
Spider-man 2 was a much better than expected sequel. It's better than the original with more improved special effects, humor, a nasty villain, and more intense action. Director Sam Raimi did a great job of making this sequel which is the best of the three films. Spider-man 3 unfortunately was the worst of the trilogy. This one however is definitely worth seeing because it's that good. Tobey Maguire reprises his role as Peter Parker/Spider-man and he continues to be a good choice for the character. Peter's now in college and what he wants more than anything is a normal life but his character feels a duty to protect people with his amazing arachnid abilities. Kristen Dunst returns as Mary Jane and she's okay in the part but like the previous one she isn't good much to do except eventually being the lady in distress again later on in the film. James Franco is back again as Harry Osbourn who blames Spider-man for his father's death. Franco does a decent job as Harry but like Dunst he isn't given much to do and his character lacks screen time. Alred Molina joins the cast as brilliant scientist Otto Octavious who after a freak accident becomes Doc Ock because of four mechanic arms melded to his back. Molina like Dafoe makes for a menacing villain and is well developed. Also his character fortunately doesn't have a corny costume like the Green Golbin did in the original. No offense. Rosemary Harris also reprises her supporting role as Peter's Aunt May. She isn't really given much to do either but Rosemary Harris makes the best of her limited screen time and Bruce Campbell shows up once again in a cameo appearance as a theater usher. The special effects are an improvement over the first one and so are the action/ fight sequences most of them between Spider-man and his nemesis Doc Ock. The one standing out is of course their fight that starts off on a skyscraper near a giant clock and then on top of a speeding train thats grows more intense as their confrontation escalates toward it's conclusion. The final showdown between Spider-man and Doc Ock near the end was a bit of a letdown compared to train one but everything else that happened before in the movie made up for the somewhat rushed conclusion. The pacing in between the action was a little slow at times and the dialogue wasn't the best occasionally problems that the original had too but this sequel is still a very good movie. It was much better than expected and I was fairly impressed with the film overall. Spider-man 2 is one of the best sequels (besides The Dark Knight, and T2 Judgement Day) out there with just the right amount of well balanced intense action, character development, humor, drama, some suspense, and impressive performances by the cast especially Molina that's sure to please almost any comic book fan.
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Balanced almost as perfectly as an egg on the back of a spoon
retroguy0214 August 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Having enjoyed the first Spider-Man movie, I was looking forward eagerly to this movie, and to bluntly ruin the surprise, I was impressed beyond expectations. In a superhero movie, good action is usually a given, but a good story is hard to manage, and Spider-Man 2 honorably handles both these elements with a grace that equals Spidey's when he's web-swinging across the skyscrapers of New York City.

Spider-Man 2's story, which is themed on internal strife, is one of the mature and realistic I've ever seen in a superhero movie, and it portrays the duality of the protagonist and antagonist's lives very effectively. Spider-Man 2 is also one of the few superhero movies that manage to be serious without getting dragged or seeming self-obsessed.

But even with its seriousness, Spider-Man 2 proudly embraces the lightness of its origins with J.K. Simmons' hilarious stints as the brash Daily Bugle editor J. Jonah Jameson, Doc Ock's dark sarcasm, a side-splitting scene with Spidey taking an elevator and a cameo by Bruce Campbell as an annoying doorkeeper at a theater, along with more subtle humorous moments with Peter Parker. Amazingly, none of the humor feels out of place, cheesy or overdone.

However, Spider-Man 2's story is not without its flaws, almost all of which had to do with prematurely revealing Spidey's secret identity, something that should have been delayed as late as possible in the series. The first time Harry does the unmasking (thanks to some good help from Doc Ock), which should've been avoided but wasn't as paining as the second time, when Spidey deliberately takes off his half-damaged mask during the climax, revealing his identity to a train full of passengers.

Perhaps sensibly, the movie makes no effort at explaining the knock-on effects of the revelation of a superhero's identity in a place like NYC (especially with people like J. Jonah Jameson around), but then why unmask Spidey in front of an entire crowd in the first place? But since this is just one inconsistency in an otherwise superb plot, it's somewhat forgivable.

The action sequences are much, much better than the first movie, and probably the best I've ever seen in a superhero movie. While the first Spider-Man featured a good deal of almost kung fu like action, this time around Spidey grapples and smashes objects on a far bigger scale – the best of which occur on the façade of a skyscraper and on top of an elevated train (the climax). But what makes it all so exciting is that Spidey does all this against four mechanical tentacles that are essentially the arms of his nemesis, Doc Ock.

Talking of Doc Ock, I feel that it's necessary to mention that his tentacles feel so organic and natural in their movements that it feels like they're actually his arms, controlled by his own muscles; in fact, they're even capable of emoting when needed, such as during the more dramatic scenes when Doc Ock questions his conscience, which is a big feat in itself. Spidey's costume has also undergone some subtle changes this time; the colors are richer, the lenses are whiter and maybe a little more opaque, and the costume generally looks more imposing on-screen.

The acting is miles better than the first movie from the ENTIRE cast, with Tobey Maguire and Alfred Molina taking the top spots in the major roles. However, Kirsten Dunst still had more room for expression. There is also something unique about the way the web-swinging scenes are filmed that I didn't feel in the first movie; it feels like you're swinging with Spidey. I later found out that this was the result of a new camera-work technique called the Spyder-Cam; anyways, great stuff. The cinematography is also top-notch throughout the movie, and especially so during the action sequences.

Overall, Spider-Man 2 is a tremendous leap forward in every aspect from its already-impressive predecessor, and in my honest opinion, quite simply the best superhero movie made so far (since this review is pretty late, I include the extremely overrated Dark Knight in that too). RATING: 9/10.
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Basically the perfect superhero movie.
Zombie-Kermit21 June 2008
Comic book movies don't get much better than this. Sam Raimi once again proves what a great director he is with this sequel to the fantastic Spider-Man movie of 2002. And as good as the first movie was, this one improves on it in many ways. It's a fantastic continuation from the first one, fitting right into the storyline. I honestly don't think anyone could hope for a sequel better than this. Set two years after the first movie, Peter is struggling to find balance between his two identities. His life is falling apart. His loved ones are still suffering from various events from the first movie. And now a new enemy has appeared. What can become of all this?

The storyline of the movie is really great. It sort of makes you ask yourself questions. Like how long can a person really put other people before themselves before it all just becomes too much? Can a person really handle that much responsibility? The movie definitely gets the human side of the story right, and has a strong sense of emotion about it. It doesn't just go through the motions and have Peter as a hero who never gives a second thought. He is portrayed as a normal person who got these powers that he never asked for. After watching the movie you might re-think "How awesome it would be to have superpowers." And the villainous Doctor Octopus has been given a drastically different origin in the movie to the one he had in the comics, which was a risky move to make, but it really worked.

The acting is great, once again. Tobey Macguire still does a great job as Peter Parker and Spider-Man, Kirsten Dunst is a good Mary Jane Wattson and James Franco plays Harry Osborne well. As with the first movie all the supporting actors in the movie are great, like JK Simmons and Rosemary Harris. A lot of the chemistry the characters had with each other in the first movie is back, although considerably different in contrast to the differences that the events of the first movie have caused in their relationships with each other. The actors pull off the changes well. Alfred Molina was the perfect casting choice as the villainous Doc Ock, and played the part fantastically. Couldn't have asked for a better actor for the job.

The visual effects in the movie are amazing. The effects in the first movie were decent, but these are a vast improvement. The action scenes were just amazing and really got my blood pumping. All of it just came together better than someone could hope for. Once again the costume designs were fantastic, with huge props for the way Dock Ock is done. His artificial arms are awesome and the character could not look more perfect. So all in all, the whole movie was fantastic, and It makes me sad that I missed the chance to see it at the cinema. I've watched it several times, and it really holds up.
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Spiderman 2- A sequel that surpasses the original
Ibuk29 October 2007
First of all let me just say that Spiderman 1 was good but not perfect. The only other sequel I preferred to the original was Superman 2. All the regulars return but this time the villain is Dr Octavious played by Alfred Molina. In my opinion however I thought Williem Dafoe was better as the villain. Everything was perfect, the scripting, the acting and the action sequences. For an superhero movie it is also quite emotional but that just adds to the appeal. There was also the hint of a revenge subplot between Harry Osborn and Spiderman. Spiderman 2 is the best in the franchise so far.

I also went to see Spiderman 3 but to be honest I was slightly disappointed. That isn't enough to deter me from watching future sequels though. No.4 bring it on!!!
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How can Spider-Man possibly be Improved?
FilmFanInTheHouse14 October 2007
Spider-Man 2 (2004, Dir. Sam Raimi)

It's been two years since Peter Parker had his transformation into Spider-Man, and he is still trying to balance life perfectly. His love for Mary Jane is becoming much stronger, as he finds it hard to not let her down. His friendship with Harry Osborn is at risk, as the young Harry is frustrated with Spider-Man getting away with his fathers 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 emerges as the dangerous, 'Doc Ock'.

The first 'Spider-Man' movie was amazing, and you would have to wonder how it could possibly be improved. Well, you just simply make a sequel. Good sequels which was better than the original are hard to come by, but 'Spider-Man 2' does the job perfectly. All the cast and crew return bringing a very familiar feeling to the original movie. Everyone is older and feel more mature. Alfred Molina is an actor who is not normally associated with comic book villains, but he performs an awesome version of Doc Ock, who is definitely more menacing than the previous Green Goblin. The special effects have improved this time, with some great action scenes between Spidey and Doc Ock. If you've never seen the 'Spider-Man' movies, what are you waiting for? "Do you love me?" - Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst) "...No." - Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire)
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One of the greatest comic movies I've seen so far!
leviathan24029119 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
it had everything that i wanted to see in a movie, action, good comedy sequences and enough romance to suit even me, they couldn't of picked a greater actor to play doc ock Alfred Molina was great to watch and the fight scene with spider-man and ock on the train made me and my whole family go wow and with harry Osbourne i really liked his development to the new goblin, i would love to think that doc ock is alive somehow so if ever they make a spider-man movie based on the Sinister Six he would be apart of it, i would recommend this movie to anyone after the perfect comic book movie...woo this is my first comment on a movie, this is the best of the spider-man movies
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Better than the original
dunit013-212 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
One word: brilliant. The first one was good. But after seeing this one, I didn't want to leave the theater. The entire cast from the original has outdone themselves in this one. However, the best performance is probably Alfred Molina as Doctor Octopus. And the special effects are realistic. Especially the tentacles scene in the emergency room. This one has improved upon everything from the original. There's more action and emotion in this one. And the ending with Harry discovering the Goblin's lair is excellent, foreshadowing, and even scary. As soon as I left the theater, I went home and began waiting for the DVD release. And when that happened, I began waiting for the release of Spider-Man 3.
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Best one of the trilogy
zaluchu28 June 2007
I've seen this movie on the theater twice.. once on the premiere here in Indonesia, and then the second was one week after. not just that, i even bought the DVD, trust me.. it's that good!

The part that i liked best from this movie was the story. Raimi has put amazing plots to the make the movie enjoyable for everyone (even kids that doesn't care too much about the story would be amazed by the fights in it). From inner conflict, love and the fight against Doc Ock, Raimi and the scriptwriters amazed me till the end.

Maguire was great. Dunst, Franco and Molina were also the vital parts that made this movie so powerful to me. Thanks Raimi, for making such wonderful superhero movie.

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Spider-man is back but with a greater enemy Doc Ock.
howellgirl201113 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
He's back but with a bigger problem now. His powers are temporarily lost for a while but when his girl-friend is kidnapped right before his very eyes he knew that he was in for a big battle with the man he had favored before he turned evil inside and out. The film was great it was just like the first film except that right at the ending Mary Jane finally saw Peter as Spider-man right before her very eyes. Now that Peter had "lost" his spider powers he thought things would run smoothly for him and his life style. But all of that changed when his girl-friend was kidnapped by the guy he used to look up to Doctor Octavius better known as Doc Ock by the newspaper Peter worked at. I was a bit scared of the new villain in town who was after Spider-man and his machine that fused together the tentacles on his back spine and messed with his mind to the point that he nearly killed Peter who revealed himself to Doc Ock when he sacrificed himself to save everyone in the city including Peter and Mary Jane but had unfortunately died of drowning to death. But overall great film and a good influence to many young children and adults of all ages.
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Maintains the energy of the first one
Dan Franzen (dfranzen70)20 December 2004
A cut above the typical comic book movie, S-M 1 did what this type of movie is supposed to do: introduce the main characters, have 'em fight a Super Bad Guy, and then have it all end happily ever after, for the most part. In other words, for the first movie in a supposed franchise, you have to allow time for exposition of the protagonist's background, even if millions already know him from another medium.

With S-M 2, though, such an obligation isn't necessary. We've met Spidey, MJ, Aunt May, et al., and we're ready to jump into a new story. So while the first one explains why Spidey is, the second movie devotes more time to fighting the Bad Guy du Jour, Doctor Octopus.

Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) still pines for MJ (Kirsten Dunst), from whom he steers clear despite his undying affection for her. It's for her own good, he tells himself. If we're together, my enemies will top at nothing to get at me through her, and I can't put her in that position. And so, in typical superhero fashion, he broods and broods and broods. The relentless push-and-pull between his love for MJ and his devotion to using his powers for good is a constant theme in the Spider-Man universe, and in the movies it either smolders in the background or charges with a raging fury to the forefront. Peter is given the impossible choice - true love or good deeds - and it's a choice to which, at its core, everyday people can relate; we all have exceedingly difficult choices to make throughout our lives.

And in this especially, the movies succeed. Peter Parker is supposed to be an average teen - well, except for those powers he has. He's not morally superior. He's not smarter. He's just a poor schlub who accidentally has these super powers, and he doesn't quite know how to deal with them. On a smaller scale, a comparison can be made to a supremely talented collegiate football player who's just made it to the pros. He has otherworldly talents. He has money, fame, fortune. And can he handle it? About as well as Peter can.

Anyway, the big villain here is the aforementioned Doc Ock (Alfred Molina), yet another in a long line of Good Scientists Gone Wrong. You may recall that the Green Goblin from the first S-M movie was also of this line. This Doc has found a way to manipulate metallic tentacles with his mind. (It helps that the tentacles are physically attached to him.) Something goes wrong, he goes mad, and next thing you know it, he's gonna take over the world. Give these boys a Happy Meal, and they'd still want two prizes.

Along with the inevitable Spidey-Doc Ock battles, Peter Parker's best friend Harry (James Franco) is still quite resentful as Spidey's killing of his father in the first movie. He doesn't know Peter is Spider-Man, but he knows only Peter is able to take photographs of him. So the second thematic struggle is within Harry - does he resent his friend for knowing the murderer (in his eyes) of his father? All of the cast returns from the first movie (well, all that survived the first movie), and they all do a collective good job. Maguire is a perfect choice for the lead; he's unassuming, can't really emote, is stoic, and even a little bit wimpy. All are qualities that plague the characters of both Spider-Man and Peter Parker.
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Spider-man some more... please!
Will Lau10 December 2004
After being very impressed with the first one after some skepticism, Spider-man 2 is tackling a sequel with great anticipation and even greater expectations. The way Sam Raimi was able to produce the story of Spider-man with such style, realism and above all, faithfulness to the Marvel original comic is tremendous to say the least. The reason why it took this long to make a live action movie for Spider-man is due to the difficulties in making the action sequences look real and being able to connect all the side stories and characters in a single effort. Although it doesn't look flawless, it is still able to fool the eyes. The characters are also faithfully represented.

Spider-man 2 is a great sequel for many reasons. First it ties right into the original without skipping a beat. Set a few years after the original with all the same actors and characters. Though it differentiates itself enough from the original so you're not watching a clone of the first. It dives deeper into the psyche and the experiences of its main character in order for you to gain a greater understanding of his situation. At the same time it still provide great visuals, pulse pounding action sequences, humorous side sequences and breath taking special effects and camera work. This movies stands head and shoulders above all super hero comic movies. It delivers what a movie goer seeks and leaves them gasping for more. Immediately after viewing, I was pondering what they will do with the next installment and i am sure that the majority of the viewers were thinking the same thing.

The movie is strung together in a great sequence that never ever bores the viewer. The new villain gets a good intro which explains his situation in a neat and tidy manor. Doctor Otto Octavius is a perfect villain which is played and visually represented to perfection. The movements of Doc Ock are fantastic. It's just as i would have pictured it in my mind, if i could... while watching the cartoons or reading the comics. Only Raimi presents it in a way that connects the loose visuals in our minds with the visual reality (of course with the aid of computers).

Some may complain about there being too much story, too much Peter Parker and not enough action. One must realize that if it were the other way around, that you'd be complaining that there wasn't enough storyline. People are so hard to please. Even with this seemingly flawless movie people still find something to complain about. The only thing i didn't understand was the presence of Ursala, the daughter of Peter's landlord. What was her role in all of this?

Anyways, i just bought the DVD for this and realized that i should voice my opinion especially seeing how low of a score this movie got in contrast with what i would score it.

Action:10 Directing:10 Acting:10 Re-watchability(if thats even a word):10

Overall rating: 10 out of 10... bravo!

Bring on part 3 whoever the villain might be. Venom, Lizard, Gobblin, Scorpion, whatever. Heck bring on the sinister 6!
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