Spider-Man: Homecoming – Review
Peter Parker zips around Queens New York, fighting crime as Spider-Man. He has a fancy hi-tech suit made for him by Tony Stark. Parker wants to join The Avengers and constantly bugs Happy Hogan to brag about his heroic deeds.
When a series of unusual robberies happen around the city – Parker investigates – disobeying Stark’s strict orders not to do so.
Parker’s actions will bring him into conflict with Toomes AKA “The Vulture”. A burgeoning super villain with a few personal issues of his own.
Parker must find a way to combat the threat and explain himself to Stark, his Aunt, his friends and the Principal at his High School.
Spider-Man: Homecoming is a delight. This is what you’d get if John Hughes directed a superhero film in the 80s. Amongst the superhero action there is a very real, very human story of a teenage boy struggling with the trappings of adolescence.
Disobeying authority, thinking he knows better, and thinking that all grownups are dumb. Even The Avengers.
It’s this humanity that makes this incarnation of Parker such a sympathetic character cause it reminded me a bit of what I was like as a teenager. Yeah the parties were cool – but that first heartbreak? Ahh man! SO RAW!!! It’s all here in this film.
Refreshingly – Parker’s secret identity as a superhero doesn’t automatically solve his problems. He’s still nerdy, somewhat bullied and a little awkward. Tom Holland sells it all beautifully. It wasn’t until the end of this film that I realised who he reminded me of: A young Michael J. Fox.
Is this the best Spider-Man film ever? It’s too early to make that call. But it’s the most HONEST one.
I was watching an interview with Kenneth Johnson not long ago. As you all know Johnson was responsible for the iconic live action The Incredible Hulk TV show in the 70s/80s.
That show is known as perhaps the first most successful screen adaptation of a superhero. In live action at least.
Johnson was asked about what he did to make it work and he said that George Burns once told him that to make a lie believable you have to infuse it with as much TRUTH as possible. He said that this approach is how he can get an audience to actually buy his myriad fantasy productions.
This also seems to be the approach that director Jon Watts took. He really gets to the CORE of who this Parker guy is. His hopes, his dreams, and the many disappointments he must encounter on his path to make them happen.
However – if I carried on analysing that particular element of the movie then I’d be doing it a disservice. Cause it ain’t all teen angst and doom and gloom.
This works PERFECTLY as a superhero film. The action scenes are kinetic and inventive – especially two thrilling sequences at the Washington Monument and the Staten Island Ferry. The visual effects are crisp and serve the story rather than distract from it.
Michael Keaton’s Toomes is an excellent bad guy. He’s probably the first blue collar working class comic book mega villain I’ve seen in a movie. His ambitions are surprisingly small – and in a way – we can understand where he’s coming from. Doesn’t stop him being an asshole, but hey – we’ve got to do despicable things to put food on the table sometimes. Amirite?
Jacob Batalon provides comic relief as Ned – Parker’s VERY nerdy best friend. Martin Starr is also very funny as Mr Harrington – Parker’s sardonic High School teacher.
Marisa Tomei is wonderful as Aunt May – although I hope that the jokes about her being a MILF Aunt are dropped for the sequel. It was done in Captain America: Civil War and it’s done here. It’s one of those things that’s amusing the first couple of times but could get boring very quickly. Yeah – she’s attractive. WE GET IT. Move on.
Robert Downey Jr is incomparable as always as Tony Stark/Iron Man, and Jon Favreau is a lot of fun as Happy Hogan. There’s another appearance by someone from their corner of the universe as well. I won’t ruin it here – but do look out for it.
I’m REALLY hoping that this is a hint that Iron Man 4 may be on the way. It feels like they’re saying “Watch this space”.
I’d love one more Stark solo adventure before Downey decides to hang up the suit for good…
Laura Harrier plays Liz – Parker’s love interest. She’s not a bad actress but she is the source of one of my criticisms with the film. I didn’t find this character particularly well developed. I didn’t understand what it was about her that would rock Parker’s world so much.
Another criticism I have is a little something in the third act. I’m not going to go into specifics but unless I’m mistaken – there is a MASSIVE plot hole in the final battle. It goes from A to C and I was sitting there thinking “What’s happened to B”?
Still. Minor gripes.
In some ways this film answered my prayers. One of the things that really frustrated me about Marvel’s Cinematic Universe films is that the origin stories were too similar to each other. It especially bugged me in Doctor Strange.
I’ve always said that I’d like one of these movies to ditch the origin story. Explain it in a line of dialogue or something and not make me sit through an hour of having it laboriously explained to me.
Well – it seems like the boys and girls at Marvel Studios were listening. This film hits the ground running and doesn’t bore us with any unnecessary exposition. It was like a refreshingly cool breeze on a stiflingly hot day. I hope this is a sign of things to come.
Special mention must go to Michael Giacchino’s score. This is one of his best. I noticed the use of a pounding and bombastic tune in the action sequences and it really added to the excitement.
All in all Spider- Man: Homecoming is huge fun. Great Summer entertainment!
The Man Who Saved Movies. Penis Parker.