Director Marc Webb and the team of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 has a reason to cheer - there will be enough jingle at the cash windows to satisfy everyone associated with this gazillion-dollar enterprise.
It's amazing emotionally
What truly works for the film is its emotional core. That's a strange thing to say for a superhero franchise, which is essentially telling you a story you already know. However, Garfield and Stone make the screen light up everytime they are together and that's where the film's strength lies.
They go on a merry dance throughout the film: he cannot lose her but he can't let her come close to him, and she is sick of this attitude. They steal a few kisses and some banter and we wish there were more such scenes.
The vulnerability that Garfield brings to the role is justifiably matched by Stone's delightful charm.
The VFX will blow you away
Every other film coming out of Hollywood is 3D or IMAX and mostly it is hard to justify why they are in that format. Not so with Spider-Man. He loves swinging around New York skyscrapers and the scenes are so spectacular that they will leave you dazzled. A stunning fight sequence between Electro and Spidey at Times Square is the piece de resistance of the sequel.
The aerial sequences will keep you hooked and there are a lot of them. If you have vertigo, look away.
A Spider-Man who doesn't take himself seriously
Spider-Man loves his job of saving New York and that shows. He has a smart quote for every occasion and when he nets a criminal, this showman can't help but perform for the crowd.
The first time Spidey introduces himself to Paul Giamatti (lowbrow scum-future villain), he goes "Hi Mr Criminal, I am Spider-Man, you can call me amazing."
When Electro tells him in the climactic sequence that he wants to become the new god of the city, his rejoinder is, "What, a god named Sparkles?"
When Gwen tells Parker that she is moving to Oxford to study, he says, "I can always move to London. I am sure there is tonnes of crime there."
Gwen, a true superhero heroine
Superhero leads are mostly damsels in perpetual distress.
is not one of them. She is her own woman and nothing irritates her more than when others take her decisions for her. She also steps in to help Spidey every time he is over his head.
She understands why Peter Parker has to be Spider-Man and is never whiny about lost time with him. You go, girl.
Too much plot, too many climaxes
There's Electro and his love-hate relationship with Spider-Man, there's the love story, there's back story dealing with Parker's father and the nefarious Oscorp, there's Parker's Aunt May dealing with Uncle Ben's death and then there is Spidey's frenemy Harry.
If the plot has you confused, the number of climaxes will make you swoon. There are three of them. Somewhere in the middle, you want to call a time out and ask them to stop. They end with a promise of a sequel, though. Long live, Spider-Man.