Review Detail

9.0 11 10
Extended Edition April 04, 2021 6195
Overall rating
Audio/Video Quality
Audio Editing
Visual Editing
Being quite familiar with Bobson’s work, several of his edits replacing the theatrical cuts in my collection, I came into this edit expecting a miraculous make-over. And even though I can testify that The Spark of Life is a vastly better viewing experience than the mess that the original film was, it would be a lie if I didn’t confess that by the end of it I felt a little disappointed. For even the most talented of editors need the right ingredients to work with, and TASM2 simply does not deliver.

To begin with, the story here is tighter and much more focused. I was never a fan of the Parkers’ disappearance mystery, right from the start, so I was pleased to see it cut in Bobson’s editing room. That also comes with a price, though, taking down too much of Sally Field’s solid presence along with it. I actually forgot there was an Aunt May somewhere in the middle of the film. The mismatching, goofy or over-the-top elements seemingly coming out of Schumacher’s Batman era are also toned down to a palatable degree; Jaime Fox’s Max Dillon feels now less of a caricature and the same goes for Dr. Kafka at Ravencroft. Dane DeHaan’s Harry Osborn is also greatly benefited by the addition of the deleted scenes as well as his introduction in the very first scene of the film. In the original cut he seemed more like an afterthought to me, never really selling out his friendship with Peter and his personal drama, his character strangled in the web of plot threads. In The Spark of Life, with so much of the unnecessary subplots cut out, he has the chance to shine more as the main plot revolves around his quest to save his life. Unfortunately, though, it all crashes down during the final act of the film. Harry’s transformation still feels uneventful; his Goblin still as cringeworthy as he ever was. There’s no way for any editor to fix that, and inevitably this spoils (at least for me) everything that’s following down to the end.

Technically, while the edit mostly meets Bobson’s high standards, as other reviewers have pointed out, there are some audio issues here and there, most notably when the sound mutes for a few seconds during Gwen’s and Harry’s elevator scene. And I could also spot a quick flash frame as well.

Final verdict: A better experience than my original viewing altogether, but still missing those qualities that would transform it into a great film.

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