I was very sceptical when hearing that the series was being rebooted, but keeping in perspective that Sony did this to hold on to the Franchise rights so it wouldn't go to Disney then made it understandable.
I found within the first half hour that Garfield was somewhat more plausible than Maguire as he seemed like a much more relatable teenager with the he's very distant as he doesn't know who he is or what he's supposed due to the absence of his parents from a young age. As Spider-Man he nailed that essence of the other half of the role on the first take and did in 5 minutes what Tobey Maguire could not do - have humour and crack jokes.
For decades Spider-Man has been a wise-cracking jokester clown that uses his wit as a facade to mask his true feelings. This is best demonstrated in the very popular and still enjoyable 90's Animated Series Spider-Man the animated series. And Andrew became the Spider-Man for the big screen that we have been waiting to see for ages.
Maguire was good for his time but I got the sense that his portrayal as Parker was kinda generic as the Teen he was a dime a dozen whereas Garfield has this very unique way of portraying Parker that stays true to the comics but is also relatable to modern aspects of teenagers and humour.
And that's another thing that this movie really expanded on - comedy. It's not a flat-out comedic romp, but it's humour within action implied.
Sheen and Field feed off each other as their comedic sense and timing is just what the movie needed to add with Spideys humour.
I felt Ifans was good as Connors but the Lizard could have done more. It's still a good Villain for a re-introduction to the story, but it could have done with a more depth and fleshing the character out.
Emma Stone was a joy to watch as Gwen Stacy. Kirsten Dunst was good as Mary-Jayne in the first flick 10 years ago but over time I felt she got flatter with each performance where as Stone is just solid from start to finish in this flick. She is a strong minded female supporting protagonist, resourceful, intelligent and she also displays a tender side that's needed to give the character heart.
I cannot say a bad word about Denis Leary as every line he says is just golden. He has that same blunt attitude that he has in his stand up shows and he carries himself the same way in this but obviously toned down for the PG-12 market and he does it so well that even when he is being a douche you cannot help but like the guy.
Sheen in my mind was a better choice for Uncle Ben, although the late Cliff Robertson was a good Ben Parker, I just felt at times his portrayal could be a little wooden whereas Martins version just feels more organic and you can actually believe the performance he puts in.
Sally Field gives a very good performance as May Parker. Granted, this is a slightly younger version of the character but it's irrelevant as she has such a good conflict with the choices that Peter makes in this flick with her concerns for him as well.
Some have narked on the score by James Horner claiming it's too generic. I never found that, I personally feel that it gave heart to the flick and made it feel dramatic where it needed to be and tender where you had to feel sympathy for the characters.
This movie is best in 3D in my honest opinion and the 3D has improved to such a point that it really does jump out at you and looks so authentic.
All in all, this is a very well presented, new yet faithful take on the origin of the character that in many ways is the version of web-slinger that audiences have been waiting for.
This Spider-Man is Amazing.