I’ve been a huge Spider-Man fan since I was young, from the comics, cartoons, and toys, I was hooked on the Web-Head and wanted more of his adventures, so the movies are always a true delight for me. Yes, I know that Spider-Man 2 is great, that first one is truly memorable for me even if it is cheesy, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 really did try, but the rest are usually seen as some of the worst comic book films have to offer. I’m honestly one more Spider-Man 3 argument away from going full emo Parker myself though. Even the bad ones captured my attention. I went into each of these films with a certain level of excitement, fueled by nostalgia and by the countless pages I had read of a hero that will always be one of my favorites—even post-One More Day—but I tried so hard not to get my hopes up for this new one. Then his role in Captain America: Civil War happened and some successful trailers made my hop rise. I was stoked to see a new breath potentially given to the Wall-Crawler and ready for one more great adventure.
Spider-Man: Homecoming was fantastic. Overall, it is one of my favorite superhero films and for Spidey as a whole is only surpassed, just slightly, by the second Sam Raimi entry. It has a great tone and the pacing is only an issue in the first third of the movie. It manages to not be a traditional origin story but still feels like it is a new hero learning how to be the legend he will become one day, and thank god I didn’t have to see Uncle Ben die again. There are great character parallels, a good touch on the high school environment, and Tony Stark did dominate parts of the film, but even that felt like it had reason. The characters shine, even Flash, and especially Vulture, who is almost sympathetic and sort of surprised me a couple of times. Keaton does steal a few scenes, his motivations come off as natural, and the costume looks pretty badass. The sound was good and the few songs that were incorporated worked fine, but the visuals were excellently done in a couple of shots that had me delighted, seeing my hero in as close to ‘real life’ up on the screen. Action scenes were great of course too, especially how Spider-Man fought and used his quips. The humor through the whole movie never felt tired or too cliché’ like it can in some of the other recent Marvel outings.
There are just enough twists in the plot to keep fans interested and tons of references for people like me to speculate on. I was so worried that those things were all the movie would be though, trying too hard to copy the Marvel formula or tripping into some of the pitfalls of those films, but it didn’t and only hinted at the bad ideas in one of two small scenes. There are a couple of moments that I feel like are underplayed, and I do wish some things had been expanded upon, but it all sets up for something that could be even better if the universe wills it. Peter Parker is played excellently by Tom Holland and the movie shows equal parts of why it absolutely sucks to try and be a superhero with a secret identity and his optimism and excitement about the life he wants to live, playing with the big boys. I could have watched another thirty minutes of just him going through high school life and making bad decisions, but that might just be me. All of this reproduced some of the same feelings I had while watching the 90s cartoons and reading so many of the issues, which for me says a lot.
Even if the sequels were cancelled tomorrow—No way of that, looking at the earnings—this iteration would still be one of my favorite entries and I can’t wait to see it again when the DVD comes out. The bad guys seem already set for the next installment but I for one would love to see some of Spidey’s other fearsome foes hit the big screen. Mysterio, Tombstone, Mr. Negative, and Morbious the Living Vampire are just among a few names I’d throw out there, but I’m just hoping to see something new and fun. Speaking of new, I know some viewers were upset that we didn’t get more of that, new ground with the character, taking a little more risk and doing other things differently, like they tried with the cast and some of the backstory. I agree. I wanted more too, but that has to be hard being the sixth movie in the series, starting over again in a way, all pulling from the same large pieces of source material. It could happen more in the next one though, because the groundwork is there now. Then there is the upcoming Venom movie of course and I can only hope Sony learned something from Homecoming to help with these other projects. Why are they doing a Black Cat and Silver Sable movie? Not sure, but I do love those characters. Now, if you’ll excuse me, since the PS4 game is still a good ways off I think it’s time to go buy some new comics and keep this feeling going.