I can see how React would be totally worth the initial pain in setting it up once you get it going. I actually thought Angular 2 was really fun to work with as a framework. It’s surely much more intuitive than the average Java framework out there. The most painful part of building an Angular 2 app was not learning or using the framework itself, but just learning all the related tools I also needed i.e. grunt, SystemJs, bower, etc. as well as managing the inter-dependencies of every tool.