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Why’d it bomb? The Amazing Spider Man 2 (2014)

Last summer, Spider-Man made his debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (or MCU for short). This summer, the web-slinger will be headlining his own movie. But before his “homecoming”, Spidey was the star of two of Sony’s franchises. First, Sam Raimi a trilogy starring Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst. Then Marc Webb rebooted the series in 2012 with Andrew Garfield taking over the mantle. In both cases, the franchise’s started off well but then, through executive meddling, things didn’t go so well.

Then came The Amazing Spider Man 2, which had the lowest grossing domestic gross of any Spider Man film, grossing $202 million domestically. That being said, it was technically a hit at the box office, making $709 million worldwide. However, while that wasn’t much different from the first movie’s worldwide gross of $757 million, Sony was expecting the movie to make more money and, when it didn’t, they ended up firing Garfield (though the fact that he had a falling out with the head of Sony didn’t help matters either), they cancelled their plans for an Amazing Spider-Man franchise, and decided to reboot the whole thing all over again. But why wasn’t it the huge hit Sony was hoping for? Let’s find out!

3. Neighbors, of all movies, ended up being worthy competition
Neighbors was released the second week after ASM opened and, amazingly enough, it actually dethroned The Amazing Spider Man 2 after its second week. I guess the teens-twentysomething’s who might’ve been interested in both got their fix after the first weekend so, once Neighbors came out, they abandoned the movie in droves and went to see Neighbors instead. Granted, Neighbors did not make nearly as much as ASM 2 altogether but, still, the fact that it actually dethroned it at the top spot at the box office in it’s 2nd week does say something!

2. The movie drove away many of the people who disliked The Amazing Spider-Man
Considering the first Amazing Spider-Man was already a bit divisive, many people who hated the first Webb film probably didn’t want to see a sequel. As a result, they stayed away and the movie ended up making less as a result. In addition, it also probably drove away many of the fans who didn’t like the franchise in the first place because they wanted Spidey to be with the MCU, as they decided it was another movie they weren’t going to see.

1. Franchise Fatigue
Probably the biggest reason the movie didn’t meet expectations is that there were just too many Spider-Man films and people wanted a break from the character. After all, The Amazing Spider-Man came out only 5 years after Spider-Man 3 and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 came out just 2 years after The Amazing Spider-Man 1. With all those movies coming so close together, people probably just got tired of the whole thing and it caused more people to stay away.

Weirdly enough, though, there is a lot of hype for the next Spider-Man reboot, though that definitely has to do with the fact that it is connected with the MCU. Otherwise, Sony’s first attempt at rebooting Spider-Man just didn’t work out and we’ll have to hope this new reboot works out for the best!

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Posted on April 19, 2017, in Movies, Super Heroes, Why'd it bomb? and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. We went from 2 mostly good Spider-Man movies to 3 mostly bad movies starring the same character. Once people realized the Garfield reboot wasn’t going to be an upgrade, the follow up was destined to bring in less money. The fact that it was the worst Spider-Man movie yet couldn’t have helped.

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    • I sort of liked Amazing Spider-man, but it was one of those deals where I put an asterisk by it with the understanding that my opinion would be moved up or down based on the follow-up. The first movie left a lot hanging. If the sequel followed up on it well, that would increase my appreciation of the first movie. Instead, Amazing Spider-man 2 was the second coming of Batman and Robin. It wasn’t just the worst Spider-man movie, it was one of the worst superhero movies of all times. Shockingly bad (Elector pun intended.)

      I’m holding out hopes that Marvel will right the ship with Homecoming. But Sony’s announcement of a Spider-man-free series of movies starring villains and supporting characters like Venom and Black Cat is a real head scratcher. They don’t appear to have learned any lessons from ASM2.

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  2. I haven’t seen Amazing Spider-man 2 yet, so I will take lebeau and Daffy’s word about the overall quality of the film. I think that that, as well as the factors Kevin lists, are doubtless big reasons for its failure. I’d suggest that one other factor might be that it ends on a major downer of a plot twist; I presume that three years after the release it’s not a big spoiler to say that Gwen Stacy dies in this one. Yes, killing a major character did not stop The Dark Knight from being a huge hit, but 1) That was a Batman film, and we expect those to be a bit dark, and 2) Rachel Dawes wasn’t as central or appealing a character as Gwen.

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  3. The Amazing Spider-Man films were terrible. I speak as possibly the biggest Spider-Man fan you may ever meet (if we ever meet). Though the first Spidey series wasn’t perfect as far as characterization, the tone was right (in the first 2 films), and were greatly enjoyed by fans and critics alike. The bad blood began with questionable choices for the third Raimi Spider-Film, but ti was still within that mostly accepted world from the first two. With the rebooting, they changed characterizations that were long established in both the comic books and the previous films. Peter Parker was a rebellious punk. Spider-Man was an asshole. Emma Stone was perfect as Gwen Stacy though. No complaints with her. The characterization of Peter continued to suck in the second Amazing Spider-Man film, but the Spidey had the right balance of pun to action to earnestness required. Plus, the costume was the closest to perfect comic Spidey. However, the story and the villains were terrible. There was so much bad, eye-rolling nonsense in the ASM films that I only watched each once, and this was after seeing the Raimi films 11, 10, and 7 times each respectively. They should have just carried on the Spidey films with new actors instead of rebooting, because the changes made were complete garbage, and trying to get around the famous phrase “With great power comes great responsibility”, but still trying to use the philosophy of it was clumsy AF. The ASM movies were just terrible all around. Spidey had me giddy in CIVIL WAR. Though there are changes in the MCU that I am NOT happy about (Hot Aunt May? Iron Man tech? A teenage friend who is also supposed to be Ned Leeds?), the characterization seems right, and it looks fun. No completely unwanted and unwarranted mystery about Peter’s parents or stupid experiments on Peter as a baby nonsense are included, thank God. Bring on MCU Spidey! It looks fun!

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  4. I liked the first one well enough, and I’ve never viewed the second, so I’m only half-informed I guess.

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  5. Personally I really disliked (hated) ASM1. The whole opening feels pointless because everyone knows Uncle Ben is going to die (and having Martin Sheen play the character only reinforced that fact from the beginning) The only scenes that shined in ASM1 were the ones where Dennis Leary was present (except for the man of many mask line, god that was aweful)

    ASM2 was slightly more enjoyable to me. However it did feel like it dragged on with the over abundance of sub plots, the classic mistake of having too many villains, and the less said about the sinister six set up the better. To its credit I was surprised when they killed of Gwen Stacy in the second movie instead of waiting for part 3. but on the whole the ASM 2 is only a minuscule improvement to its predecessor in some areas but it offsets this with its own problems.

    as for homecoming, I really wish they weren’t doing another reboot so soon, but if they could turn out a better series than the Mark Webb films than more power to them..

    Also I would eventually like to see a spider man movie that sees Toby Maguire return as an older Peter Parker from another universe teaming up with the MCU version.

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