Movie Review: Spiderman: Far From Home
Spiderman Far From Home is one of the movies I’ve been waiting for. I loved Spiderman Homecoming and Tom Holland’s portrayal, his ability to combine the best elements of Peter Parker and his alter ego Spiderman. But with Avengers Endgame, I knew there would be consequences from the death of Iron man and I looked forward to how they would deal with those in this movie. The film did an incredible job with the impact on Peter and exploring the theme of fake news as well as truths and illusions while Tom Holland’s performance is perfect.
In Spiderman: Far From Home, Peter (Tom Holland) is back from the Blip along with the majority of his class, all of whom didn’t age during the five years of Avengers Endgame and now must retake their senior year. In the meantime, there are strange elementals destroying towns across the world. Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) attempts to recruit Peter to assist but all Peter wants is to enjoy his class trip to Europe with his best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon) and MJ (Zendaya). He also wants to find a way to tell MJ how he feels about her. Unfortunately, an elemental attacks Venice while Peter and his friends are visiting and with the help of Nick, Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders), and a new ally, Quentin Beck/ Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal), Peter must take up the task of defeating the creatures. But things aren’t what they appear and Peter must figure it out before it’s too late, for both the world and himself.
Deceptions and illusions are what drive this film. It begins with the illusion Peter harbors that Tony Stark expects him to take over his mantle and the pressure this results in on Peter. Peter must discover his own way of being a hero without Tony to guide him. A big guiding force in helping Peter learn this truth is Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) who does a great job of moving Happy into a more congenial and mentoring role in Peter’s life. Peter also attempts to hide the all important secret of his identity as Spiderman and this results in complications, both with the mission and with his friendship with MJ. How Peter handles these complications and the pressure of being a hero are what drive the film forward. Ultimately, the film is about Peter coming to terms with Tony’s death and finding his own place as a hero.
The film also explores social media and fake news. It points out how perspective can spin the truth, how reputation guides how others perceive you and how a well crafted lie can convince others that you are honorable, even when the truth is much different. The film explores those elements from beginning to end, and you never can tell quite what is going on, truths being revealed even at the end of the movie. But it also shows how telling the truth can build relationships and trust.
The acting is perfect. Tom Holland is the perfect choice for Spiderman but also for Peter Parker. He effortlessly blends nerdy intelligence with wit and action. Marisa Tomei is beautiful as Aunt May. She is funny, pushy, and loving, the best blend of aunt and mother to Peter. Jon Favreau is both funny and wise, a seamless blend that allows his character much greater voice in the film and helps counter some of the darker moments in the movie. Jacob Batalon as Ned and Zendaya as MJ are supportive but also help with the more comedic moments in the film as does Tony Revolori as Flash Thompson and Remy Hii as Brad Davis (a rival for MJ’s affections). Both help with the humor and comedy in the movie. Equally funny are JB. Smoove as Mr. Dell and Martin Starr as Mr. Harrington. Jake Gyllenhaal is absolutely one of the stars of this film as he portrays Mysterio, an ally for Peter but ultimately part of the deceptions surrounding Spiderman.
If you liked Homecoming, you will absolutely love this film. It is the perfect sequel, one that builds to a bigger payoff in the movie than Homecoming, taking place in a wider world and with bigger consequences, much like Avengers: Endgame. As an end to the storyline in Endgame, it is perfectly placed to explain what happened during the Blip but also deal with the fall out from that film. If you haven’t seen it yet, I suggest you go now while it is still on the big screen. It is well worth it.
Rating: 4 out of 5 drones
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