I’m reading the YouTube comments on the trailers for the upcoming Spider-Man reboot film starring Andrew Garfield. I’m absolutely baffled by the number of people who say that they’ll never be able to accept another actor as Peter Parker after Tobey Maguire.

Look, I’ve got nothing against Tobey Maguire–he was fine in those films–even likeable by some measure in a largely innocuous way. But he hardly defined the role for me, primarily because the character, itself, was never very charismatic, and Tobey Maguire isn’t the sort of actor who could feasibly impart that trait to the role. For example, if you wanted to say this about another actor taking on Tony Stark at the point that Robert Downey, Jr. inevitably abandons the role, I’d understand. Why? Because of charisma: both the character and the actor have it in spades to the point that it’s almost difficult to determine where the actor ends and the character begins.

I really don’t know if they’re going to be able to turn that around in The Amazing Spider-Man, but if nothing else, this trailer at least has one joke that’s funnier than anything Spider-Man got to say over the course of the three previous films. I also love the actor’s delivery, both verbal and body language.

In other news, here are a few short reviews, and when I say “short”, I don’t mean my customary “short”, which always ends up being half an essay. I’m actually going to make an effort here to be as concise as possible.

On a side note, I added my blog to Networked Blogs just because the two other people I regularly follow are also on there. So become a follower (scroll to the bottom of the page)!

Super 8 (2011)

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Okay, I think I get it. This is J.J. Abrams attempting to blend a 1950s-style sci-fi horror and The Goonies. It’s largely pretty fun, mostly owing to well-written parts for the child actors, who are all good. But it falls somewhat short of being a great film, if only because the ending feels so anti-climactic. I wanted more.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)

Rating: ★★½☆☆ 

This was a great film…if you want to put yourself to sleep. My wife was asleep after about five minutes, and I made it roughly half-way through. One or two good performances simply weren’t enough to make me care about anything happening in this film.

Look, I’m just going to spoil the ending, because I swear to you, it doesn’t matter at all. At the point that we learn the identity of the mole that Gary Oldman’s character has spent the entire film trying to root out, the only reason whatsoever you could possible care is because it’s Colin Firth. The mole could have been anybody and it wouldn’t have made a difference, because we hardly know a thing about any of these characters anyway.

The Adventures of Tintin (2011)

Rating: ★★★★★ 

There was nothing about this film that wasn’t fun. It’s interesting to see Steven Spielberg return to the top of his game in an animated film. Brilliant from start to finish. I don’t think any prior affinity for Tintin is required.

Second Opinions