Film Reviews

Spider-Man: Homecoming – Review

Marvel’s friendly, neighbourhood Spider-Man returns for a second reboot after new Spidey Tom Holland’s debut in Captain America: Civil War.

This is my chance to prove myself

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Tom Holland dons the red and blue spandex for his first self-titled film

The story follows the youngest Peter Parker we’ve seen on screen to date as he begins to navigate his way through his regular high school life after his run in with the Avengers two months prior.

Peter struggles to fall back into his old routine and strives to prove himself to Mr Stark (Robert Downey Jr). However, Tony wants him to keep his feet “on the ground” but when Adrian Toomes/Vulture (Michael Keaton) emerges with scavenged and stolen weapons and tech from previous Avengers battles, keeping his feet on the ground in the last thing on Peter’s mind.

Directed by Jon Watts, Homecoming is perhaps the most comic-accurate Spidey portrayal of the young hero. The story gets set into motion when Toomes and his associates are assisting with clean up and salvaging weapons from the New York Chitauri attack seen in the first Avengers film. Things change when the government steps in along with Tony Stark in the form of the Department of Damage Control swiftly putting Toomes and company our of work.

Angered by this Toomes and his associates take matters into their own hands deciding to steal and salvage any and all equipment they can from Avengers battles in order to sell and make new weapons to provide stability for their families.

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Michael Keaton as family man and baddie Vulture

Flash forward a couple of years back to present day and Toomes and his associates have managed to create weapons allowing Toomes to take up the mantel of Vulture and his associates as Shocker. These become the men that antagonise Spider-Man continuously and with Stark and Happy (Jon Favreau) seemingly not giving Peter the time of day, he takes this as the opportunity he has been waiting for to show that he could become a valuable member of the team. Unfortunately for him, taking on a group of bad guys with alien weapons whilst maintaining a low profile in school and keeping his alter-ego from Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) isn’t that easy.

VERDICT:

Definitely the most solid of the Spider-Man movies. Tom Holland is a great choice for Spider-Man, I think he can pull of the interchanging from Peter Parker to Spider-Man better than the previous actors. He comes across more relatable to a younger audience as he is a younger actor and pulls of the awkward teenage phase better. Tobey Maguire was good for a first outing but I don’t think he would have survived in today’s era of superheroes. I liked Andrew Garfield but he wasn’t given great material to work with so I feel that’s what let him down.  

It was nice to see Jon Favreau back as Happy Hogan and Gwyneth Paltrow’s return as Pepper Potts in the films final scene was a welcoming surprise. One thing I’ve noticed with the Spider-Man filmography is the ever present comedic timing. The dialogue between characters just bounced back and forth and was very well done. The Easter eggs were nicely done also. I liked the nods towards the previous Spidey films; image of Electro on Peter’s T-shirt (The Amazing Spider-Man 2) and the scene where Peter was holding together the sinking ship (Spider-Man 2).

I liked Tomei’s role as Aunt May. I would liked to have seen her take up more of a motherly role but that could come in the sequel. I enjoyed the addition of Ned (Jacob Batalon) a lot I feel he evened Peter’s character out and gave him someone to talk to. There was a lot of buzz around Zendaya when she was cast but I fail to see why as I felt her characters was slightly underwhelming but, maybe there’s potential there for more involvement with her in the sequel.

I would have liked to see more of Toomes/Vulture as a family man. He only ever really appeared in that role in minor instances and by that point he had unfortunately already fallen into the stereotypical bad guy role. Which I found disappointing, it felt like they took the easy way out with his character. I do wish Tony had interacted more with Peter but it was nice to see him trying to fill that ‘Dad’ role and be more of a responsible mentor. I liked how he never stole the spotlight or took away from the fact that this is a Spider-Man movie not an Iron Man movie.

Again, it was solid. Not my favourite. I’m glad they didn’t just redo the origin story again. We don’t need to see Uncle Ben die a third time. I do feel that with the addition of the new AI suit they are hoping it will be Spidey that will lead the Avengers forward into Infinity War – not sure how I feel about that. I don’t hate Spidey, but he definitely isn’t in my top 5 – maybe its because this is the third actor in just over ten years however, he is not a character I would care for in a big leadership role. I don’t think he has the presence of Iron Man or Cap or Fury. I can’t see him doing that nor would I like to see him doing that.

Overall, the better of the Spider-Man outings. It hasn’t changed my opinion on the character much. He’s OK just not it for me. It did push the characters progression forward more than its predecessors. I did feel the soundtrack was a little random and out of place at times but it wasn’t a major issue. I do wish they wouldn’t feel the need to Stark-iffy all the characters though. Yes, the gadgets and gizmos look cool and nice and all but is it really necessary. It starts to take the authenticity away from the characters a little.

I’d give Spider-Man: Homecoming a 7.2/10

********

Emma

 

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