With so many different villains and plot threads to manage, Marc Webb’s upcoming superhero sequel The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a difficult movie to get the measure of, even after having seen plenty of images, clips and trailers. There’s room for a lot to go wrong, but if it all goes right then this could be the biggest superhero movie of the year.

The biggest super-showdown being promoted is between Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield) and Electro (Jamie Foxx), but crowding around the edges of this conflict are Green Goblin (Dane DeHaan) and Rhino (Paul Giamatti), and several other members of the Sinister Six have been teased as well.

In an interview with Total Film, Webb says that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will be pushing a lot of boundaries now that Spider-Man’s origins have been established.

“It’s huge. We’re pushing the levels of effects, the level of action and the emotional capacity of this kid. It’s an aggressive step forward.”

Pushing the level of action is more or less expected of comic book movies these days, and pushing the levels of effects isn’t too much of a challenge, since the CGI in The Amazing Spider-Man wasn’t exactly groundbreaking. Webb’s comments about pushing the emotional capacity of Peter Parker, however, are particularly interesting in light of a certain significant event in his relationship with Gwen Stacey (Emma Stone) that fans of the comics will already be anticipating in this movie.

Peter might still be young, but he’s been dealt a lot of hard blows in life. Not only did he lose his parents at a young age, but he also witnessed the death of his uncle and subsequently took up the mantle of a superhero charged with protecting New York City. Webb’s promise to push him even further shows dedication to a pretty serious task, but the director implies that he’s OK with a bit of melodrama.

“We throw around the term ‘operatic’ because of the spectacle and the theatre involved, which is pretty epic… There are enormous sets and great set-pieces. But really it’s a very intimate song – this relationship between Peter and Gwen is very delicate and beautiful.”

Those who have been following the development of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will know that the relationship between Peter and Gwen was such a strong element that Shailene Woodley’s Mary Jane Watson ended up being cut from the movie altogether, and it’s unclear at this whether the actress will play the role in one of the upcoming sequels. Garfield and Stone’s on-screen chemistry was one of the most highly praised aspects of The Amazing Spider-Man so it makes sense to keep it as a grounding element to all of the insane stuff going on in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – even if it does all end in tears.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 swings into theaters on May 2, 2014.

Source: Total Film