It was almost universally agreed that 2014's "[The Amazing Spider-Man 2](movie:508593) " could have been significantly better than it was, although many fans including myself still enjoy the film. Marvel President Kevin Feige who has been leading the MCU to greatness this past decade sent some notes to Sony on ways to improve the film; if only they have listened. The following notes are from an email dated November 19th, 2013.
There are too many story lines and we need to choose which ones we are focusing on and lift out the other ones, ie; could reduce father arc to just Roosevelt?
This was a problem I and the majority of fans and critics had with "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" it felt like there was too much going on at once. Gwen and Peters relationship, Electro, Harry Osborn's disease, Peters parent's secret, the Sinister Six setup and more. The film was convoluted, and some of these story lines being taken out or simply reduced may have made the film feel a lot more balanced.
Could cut out plane crash and Richard destroying spiders and start on armored car – don’t start with Spider-Man….let the danger/stakes to NYC build first and then have Spider-Man enter the scene heroically.
The plane crash scene did feel like a strange opening for a Spider-Man film, it felt out of place, the next scene however was almost perfect. Seeing Spider-Man swing in and save the day in one of his everyday type situations was marvelous.
Tone down Paul Giamatti performance, so he seems a bit more menacing and less cartoonish.
We can all agree that a low point of the film was Paul Giamatti's over the top and cartoonish performance. He should have been a force to be reckoned with, his persona almost works in the beginning of the film but then it feels odd at the end of the film following such a serious scene, he should have been a serious character throughout, counter balanced by Spider-Man's wit.
If you cut Richard from the opening and the plane crash maybe you could instead do Harry coming home and seeing Norman at the top of the movie as a cold open.
Really love Electro – feels like you may not need the scene in his apartment, which makes him seems completely crazy and hard to relate too.
I liked the character of Electro, he was visually very cool to look at and was very menacing when he wanted to be, but the scenes before he is horrifically transformed are almost unbearable and very reminiscent of Jim Carrey's The Riddler in "Batman Forever"
Like the idea that eel goes in his mouth and instead of burrowing, you see it glow within him…
Need to set up the Power Plant earlier, visually.
The power plant which is the background for the big finale felt way too convenient for Electro and felt like it was only there to serve his character. This setting being shown to us a lot earlier and explained to us would have made the setting for believable.
Seems like the movie switches pov’s a lot…why are we in Max’s pov during the car chase, worth looking at this playing out from Spidey’s pov.
I like this idea, we would have been able to get a viewpoint of Spider-Man when his attention is turned to saving a civilian instead of battling the villain.
There could be a better way to reveal that Peter is missing graduation – maybe when you cut Gwen you cut to the wide shot?
Tiny note – don’t think Peter would lie to Gwen about sirens --- maybe he just downplays it…
This was an odd moment in the film, Gwen knows Peter is Spider-Man and embraces that fact, so her getting angry about sirens and him lying to her seemed strange. This would have worked if Gwen was unaware of Peter's alter ego.
Stan Lee Cameo – maybe need a little more emphasis on Peter here trying to get out of his costume and not be in seen…set up a little more the pressure of the principal getting closer and closer to calling his name.
Instead of seeing the ghost of Captain Stacy, can just here the voice in Peter’s head and maybe flash back to the last movie? Don’t think we should add Cap Stacy back into car chase.
I actually disagree with Feige here, I liked it when Peter saw Captain Stacy in the car next to him, because we still got Gwen's audio in the background, I thought that worked well.
There is too much back and forth with Peter and Gwen – can we recut the Dim Sum scene so that it doesn’t feel so repetitive of their break-up in the last movie – Can Peter be more honorable and definitive and less wishy-washy?
Peter and Gwen breaking up felt rushed and seemingly came out of nowhere as we get no context on how he's done this to Gwen "again and again".
Why do we need a year to pass…
Harry story feels like the main plot of the movie – Peter should look into the past b/c of Harry – maybe find some photos of them together as kids…use obsession wall more to set up this part of his past not just what happened to parents.
We don't get a lot with Peter and Harry's past and this could have been explored more, in the trailer we see that there is more of connection between the Parker's and the Osborn's than meets the eye but they seemed to have dropped that for the feature.
Not sure what Peter learns at Roosevelt is entirely correct. We’re distracted by the idea that Peter became Spider-Man b/c of his father’s blood --- all this special back story with his super-scientist dad fights with the idea that Peter is normal kid from Queens who becomes the greatest super-hero in the world…
Peter being the only one able to benefit from the spider DNA did ruin the character slightly. Spider-Man is an un-extraordinary kid who becomes extraordinary by chance.
Andrew’s performance is all over the place…a lot of crying and then a lot of mania. Hard to track him emotionally sometimes. It undermines his reaction to Gwen’s death b/c he gets upset and emotional a lot.
I actually thought Garfield's performance was the highlight of the film and Gwen's death was a stand out scene.
Don’t like the idea that May tells Peter his parents were spies b/c two seconds later he finds out they are not and it again fights with the idea that he’s an ordinary kid.
I never went along with Peters parent's backstory because Sony only went so far with it, they promised us so much more in the marketing material; "The Untold Story", that they simply never gave us, so the morsels of information they did give us didn't feel like enough.
Like the idea that May finds out he’s Spider-Man – finds his costume instead of just the rosemary harris wink-wink all the time.
Aunt May discovering Peter's costume could have made for a very dramatic scene (the costume was in his wardrobe, she could have discovered it when putting clothes in his room). It's clear that she knows he is Spider-Man but that should have been played up more.
Kind of like the morgue, but hate the dancing mortician – cliché.
Are you using VFX to show how Electro is travelling from one point to another (bursts of electricity).
Need to underscore capture of goblin…more sirens as you linger on the clock 1;21, 1:22 am (nice touch).
Surveillance scene should be about following Harry not Peter…no one should be following Peter.
Can Electro hum Itsy-Bitsy Spider before he plays it electronically…maybe we can use this again.
When Electro plays Itsy-Bitsy-Spider by hitting the pylons, it was a funny moment but flew over a lot of the audiences head as it wasn't very clear, having the villain hum it before would have made it more obvious.
Maybe intercut the ending montage and hearing Gwen’s speech with someone going into special projects and revealing more easter eggs and see that the rhino case has been broke into and the suit is missing…great way to transition to rhino ending.
This would have made for a smoother transition.
Don’t need Aunt May in the kitchen.
Spider-man needs to feel more directly responsible for preventing the planes from crashing.
I agree, his involvement in the life or death situation is never spoken of.
Don’t show New Yorkers looting.
So there you go, there are Kevin Feige's notes on how Sony could have improved "The Amazing Spider-Man 2", now that the Web Slinger is in joint custody with Marvel, we might finally get in the right direction. Feige is clearly a big fan of the character.
Do you guys agree with Feige's notes or do you like "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" the way it is? Comment below!
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