Composer of the month Franchises Hans Zimmer month

Soundtrack review: The Amazing Spiderman 2 (Hans Zimmer and The Magnificent Six – 2014)

SpiderMan2
“The Amazing Spiderman 2” is the perfect score for a superhero movie light and exciting as this one

I like the rebooted “The amazing Spiderman” franchise better that the trilogy helmed by Sam Raimi. I think Andrew Garfield is perfect for the part of Peter Parker; he’s more believable as our hero. I enjoyed the first movie very much, it was way beyond my expectations. I also loved James Horner’s take on the superhero. The new theme he crafted was brilliant and I was still humming it when the second movie was released.

I was giddy with joy when I learned that after Batman and Superman, Hans Zimmer would get to write a theme for yet another superhero I love. The second Amazing Spiderman movie changed tone from the first. The first was a romantic origin story. This time, Spiderman is cockier, more cartoonish and the movie is exaggerated on purpose. And I want to remind all this to the guys who massacred Hans Zimmer’s score for not being serious enough, or melodic enough, or old school. It was supposed to sound the way it did. Hans Zimmer managed to write a score that fits the movie and characters almost better than any other score he’s written. His score is another character in the movie. I loved it that he kept Horner’s Spiderman theme like an echo through his score.

And the Electro theme? I saw the movie and understood the character. His state of mind and motivation looked and felt exactly like the crazy  8 minute theme that Hans and The Magnificent Six wrote. The “My enemy” theme is like an insight into the misunderstood, broken and hateful mind of Electro. The twisted rhythm, the whispered lyrics, they are all perfect for what the character meant. “I’m electro” is one of the most appropriate themes for a film character I’ve seen in a long time. The changes in mood, the surges in energy, it’s like Electro himself wrote it.

The score flows gapless like a one hour long cue. The transition between cues is executed brilliantly. The production of the album is flawless. The journey of listening to this score is similar to Spiderman’s jumps over the city of New York, from wire to wire…

And from “Let her go” on, we get a 9 cue long beautiful romantic and intense section…Every cue is one more stab to the heart, even Electro’s final surge (“Still crazy”). The second half of the score is like a parade of themes, it’s like the encore after the curtain came down. We see again our favorite characters through the music as they take one more bow…I love this part and I love this score. With every listen I get more and more attached to it, with every listen I discover one more familiar motif and it discovers one more place inside me to conquer. The music is beautiful, the synth and keyboard sound exactly the way I want them to and I feel every note. I am absolutely in love with this score; I like it even more than I expected I would. It sounds right; it feels right, it’s fresh, exciting, emotional and confirms Hans Zimmer’s state of grace from 2013 and 2014.

“The rest of my life” is a sweet and heartbreaking piano cue that is just a prelude to the cherry on top…the final cue…wow!! The tragic and unexpected end of the movie gets a special treatment from Hans Zimmer, in the form of “You’re that Spidey guy”. This is one of those perfect, 6 star cues I look for in every score. It nails what the final scene is about and it’s the crown jewel of a magnificent score. It ravishes me, it makes me believe, it gets me all emotional and I feel grateful that I am able to listen to a cue like this. I get lost in it and I don’t want to leave. The final shadow of Electro only adds to the poignancy of “You’re that Spider guy”, while the final notes are reserved for hope and inspiration in the form of Spiderman’s brass based new theme. We leave this score and I can’t wait for the next one!

“The Amazing Spiderman 2” is the perfect score for a superhero movie light and exciting as this one. The score has all the grandeur of a super hero, all the emotions and subtle twists of a superhero’s love affair and everything I need to get really excited and mark a score among my favorites. I love it with passion. I want to take this score in my home and eat with it, sleep with it, have it near me all the time.

Cue rating: 87 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 42 / 57

Album excellence: 73%

Highlights:

I’m Electro

I’m Spider-Man

My Enemy

Ground Rules

Special Project

I’m Moving to England

Let Her Go

You’re My Boy

I Need to Know

Sum Tota

I Chose You

We’re Best Friends

Still Crazy

The Rest of My Life

You’re That Spider Guy

About the author

Mihnea Manduteanu

I have been listening to film music for 25 years and writing about it since 2014. I've written over 1000 reviews and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I am also a member of IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association).

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