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[Movie Review] Spider-man: Homecoming (2017)

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Plot Summary: Following the events of Captain America: Civil War (2016), Peter Parker attempts to balance his life in high school with his career as the web-slinging superhero Spider-Man.

Director: Jon Watts

Writers: Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley

Runtime: 2h 13min

Main Cast:

  • Tom Holland as Peter Parker /Spider-Man
  • Michael Keaton as Adrian Toomes / Vulture
  • Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark / Iron Man
  • Marisa Tomei as May Parker
  • Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan
  • Zendaya as Michelle
  • Donald Glover as Aaron Davis
  • Jacob Batalon as Ned
  • Laura Harrier as Liz
  • Tony Revolori as Flash
  • BOkeem Woodbine as Herman Schultz

Review by: Mukosi

In this 3rd adaptation (2nd reboot) of Marvel’s Spider-Man, we’re treated to a  full feature length film of the wall-crawler they teased us with in Captain America: Civil War. Unlike every reboot ever, we were thankfully spared the tragedy of seeing Uncle Ben die for the umpteenth time. And, while this movie starts with a scene taking place years prior to the current day of the movie, the context given there is important and, thankfully, not done in a cliché way. We’re brought forward, to “today”, artfully, to a high school sophomore Peter Parker fresh off his debut feature on the Avengers 3rd album and well on his way to making name for himself as a truly friendly, neighborhood Spider-Man. But, of course, that’s only the beginning.

What I Liked:

1.) We finally got the Spider-Man we wanted AND deserved.

Tom Holland as Peter Parker gives us the small, wiry frame you (read: I) came to love as we flipped through the pages of his latest exploits. He sold the awkward 15-year-old who is just now aware of the fact that he’s growing as both a man and a friend, but not quite sure as to what that means, how to go about it or, ultimately where it will lead. The juggling act of high school, a social life, possible romance and the duties he puts on himself as Spider-Man are wonderfully juxtaposed here. When one excels, another lags. Where an opportunity to make meaningful strides in one area arises, the urgent call from another demands attention. This push and pull is what humanizes Parker. His failings are rarely of his own doing, say like a Thor failing to be worthy of Mjolnir or a Tony Stark unwittingly making a way for Ultron to come into existence, but more the circumstances his life invariably throws at him that, individually, he would be able to handle in turn but consecutively, or worse, concurrently, no one could hope to bat 1.000. And, in the instances where his own poor judgment have been his own doing, it’s due to him attacking issues with the zeal of a supercharged teenager and, as smart as he is, not potentially seeing things the way another, more experienced person/hero may have.

2.) Reimagining of characters

We’ve all seen the trailers. Jacob Batalon plays Ned Leeds, Parker’s best friend, who any web-slinger fan will easily identify as Ganke in everything but name… and appearance. I love it. Aunt May is hot now, Flash is Indian and, well… I’ll let you guys see the rest for yourselves.

3.) Attention to detail

The script gives us things that, as fans, we would see in comics and, as logical, thinking adults, we knew would have to be pitfalls of the profession. Things like miscalculating how high up on a particular web strand to swing to avoid becoming a red and blue smear or not having a place to swing from at all came into play in this newest web-head iteration. Throwback nods to all manners of previous Spidey publications (one, in particular, will make anyone who suffered through previous Spidey films laugh out loud), fan service and Easter eggs are plentiful and very appreciated in Homecoming. Leftover web on various building edges or lampposts in Parker’s wake as he makes his way from one crisis to the next gave me the tiny points of joy I never knew I was missing in life.

What I Didn’t Like:

A lot of what gave me pause during this movie stemmed from the fact that, while this is clearly the first installment of at least two, there was really only one plot point, as far as the overarching Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) goes, that I felt would have even the slightest implication on anything outside of this franchise going forward. This could go on by itself, much like the Thor franchise has, with heroes/villains crossing over into other titles as needed, and I would be perfectly fine. However, looping in even something small from where we all know the MCU is headed would have been the proverbial cherry on top of this already delightful cake.

Images Courtesy of IMDB

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