The thought that continuously ran through my head as I was watching this movie was, "wow, how cool would it be if Disney owned Spider-man and he could be in the Avengers?". The answer, obviously, is very cool, but then I realized one reason why I kept thinking this was because of how this movie is trying to set up its own universe (A spider-verse if you will). And therein lies the problem with the Amazing Spider-man 2, it feels more like a set up for future instalments rather than it's own thing.
Now starting off my review with that will likely lead you to think that I hate the movie. Quite the contrary, I actually did enjoy this movie a lot, but that is why I find the things I didn't like in this movie, I REALLY didn't like in this movie. Before I get into that however, I should say why I did, in fact, enjoy the film. Obviously the first thing I should talk about is Spider-man himself. I thought Andrew Garfield was great as Spider-man once again, but I felt myself liking him a lot more than in the first film because the dialogue was noticeably better, especially all the smart-ass things Spider-man says to the baddies. I also liked the relation ship with Gwen Stacy much more as again, I thought the dialogue was better and Garfield and Stone have great chemistry. However I felt like they spent a little too much time on the romance (On a side note, I'm getting sick of it being mandatory for every super-hero movie to have a romance, sometimes I just wanna see a guy in tights and nothing else), it never felt like it was dragging on too bad, but could've been tightened up.
The biggest thing that I noticed about this movie was that it easily had the best action of all the Spider-man movies. Right from the first scene I thought "well, I sure wish I had those powers", because the action is filmed incredibly well, was fun, tense, and uses POV shots very well to make you feel like you're in the web-slinger's shoes. Having very good looking effects also helps with this (and indeed, the film does have such things). Speaking of cool looking, I'd like to move onto the main villain of the film: Electro. Now I really enjoyed what they did with this character, I wasn't a fan of his design before he turned into Electro (he looked a bit too cartoonish) but Jaime Foxx was great as a creepy nerd obsessed with Spider-man. Once he turns into Electro that was handled well too, as they put just enough sympathy in the character to make you feel something for him, but make him bad enough to want you to see him get taken down. The only problem I had with him, is that I don't really understand how falling into a tub of eels gave him his powers (just like I don't entirely understand how injecting spider venom turns you into a Goblin) but it's a comic book movie so I'm willing to look past that.
Now that we're on the subject of villains, I can get to my main problem with the movie. The other two villains in the movie are The Rhino and the Green Goblin as I'm sure you saw in the trailer, and both are not handled particularly well. First up, the Rhino. I had heard that the Rhino was only in it for a few minutes, but I didn't think that was a terrible idea, as it would be a good way to introduce him subtlety before the [Sinister Six](movie:1274281) movie. But the way they do introduce him, they should have just left him until the next movie, or at least introduce the guy but leave the Rhino suit until the next movie. It doesn't help matters that the guy (no I don't know the Rhino's actual name) is basically a cartoonish thug, so overall Rhino was only in it for trailer fodder and should have been held off till the next movie. The Green Goblin is different however, because I actually liked the build up they had to Harry Osbourne (which, another completely pointless character was Norman Osbourne, as he is literally in two minutes of the movie) becoming the Goblin was well done. I though Dane Dehaan did a good job and I liked the friendship him and Peter had. However, once he becomes the goblin, I don't think I've seen a more rushed villain since Venom in the last Spider-man movies. Now granted I liked the look of this Goblin a lot more than the Raimi version, but again, it would have been better if they just left Harry's transformation into the Goblin until the next film. One final complaint I had, was that they once again go into the back story of Peter's parents, and for having multiple scenes across two movies, this side story doesn't reveal anything remotely interesting and was another thing that should've been left out.
Overall, [The Amazing Spider-Man 2](movie:508593) (or the Stupendous Arachnid-person deux, as I've taken to calling it) is a very entertaining, and fun entry in the series with some good performances and a great central villain, whose script unfortunately tries to juggle too much at once. The film does, admittedly, have me excited for what they plan to with this universe, but it could've been done better.