Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Spider-Man: Homecoming

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion (or other commenters), that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching!  Does whatever a spider can...except scare the living crap out of people like regular spiders do.



Spider-Man:  Homecoming – 5 out of 5

I’ve been a big fan of Spider-Man since I was a little boy.  The very idea of a kid accidentally getting powers and then struggling to be both a student and a hero was just appealing to me.  As a child, he spoke to me because the problems he dealt without outside of stopping the bad guys were things that I had to deal with.  I’ve religiously read his books my whole life and gave up on him for a brief period during The Clone Saga (like a lot of people did) but my fandom for the character has always been around.  Naturally, I’ve been there for every incarnation of his live-action films and, while I do enjoy each of them on their own unique level, I’ve found this latest feature, Spider-Man:  Homecoming, to be one of my favorites.

                                                                                                Sony Pictures Releasing
I hate that this imagine puts Creed's "With Arms Wide Open" in my head.
  

After the events of Civil War, Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is attempting to make it as your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.  He’s hoping that his mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) will make him a member of the Avengers but, until then, he’s got to try and survive high school, dealing with his crush Liz (Laura Harrier), and his best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon).  After discovery some sinister lowlifes selling dangerous weapons fashioned from the Chitauri tech that was left behind from the invasion, Peter learns of the existence of a dangerous new villain by the name of the Vulture (Michael Keaton).  With Iron Man not returning his calls, Peter decides to take matters into his own hands and save the day.

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I can't get enough of the Vulture's costume design in this one.


When they announced that Sony finally realized that they weren’t handling the Web-head right and the landmark deal of sharing the character with Marvel Studios so he would be in the Marvel Cinematic Universe was signed, I was ecstatic.  I am a big, big fan of the MCU films and have adored every second of this shared universe and now Spider-Man was going to be a part of it?  I was all in!  Then I saw Tom Holland in action in Captain America:  Civil War and I was going out of my mind.  He fit the character so perfectly in my opinion and, in his short time in the film he instantly became my favorite actor to portray the Amazing Spider-Man.  Needless to say, I was very excited for his first solo film in the MCU and my high expectations were met!

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I like to imagine he's constantly humming the old cartoon theme.

The fun, popcorn action mentality of the MCU is painted all over this film as well as the feature expertly capturing the tone of the comics as Peter struggles to be both a hero and a student.  Big points are given to this movie for refusing to tell us his origin all over again and, instead, jump us straight into his journey of trying to find himself as the hero.  The film also win major points for some very exciting and fun action scenes and bringing in humor that feels right at home with the kid who can do whatever a spider does.

                                                                                             Sony Releasing Pictures
That look makes me think that Peter just said he thinks
Batman makes a better billionaire superhero.
 

I already mentioned how great Tom Holland is as Peter Parker/Spider-Man but it really needs to be mentioned again that he really embodies the spirit of the character.  The kid is overflowing with the charisma and charm that is needed to guide the story and he’s just plain enjoyable to watch.  Holland is backed up by a great cast of players who bring to life those around Parker—whether they are smaller characters like Donald Glover as Aaron Davis (Miles Morales fans will recognize that name), Martin Starr as a teacher and Hannibal Buress as the school’s gym coach or if they are larger roles like RDJ still proving he’s the only man to play Iron Man and Marisa Tomei as Aunt May Parker.  Everyone just feels so good in their roles (no matter what size the role is) and it results in a diverse and very amusing cast.  However, one man proved to be just as commanding as Holland was and that was Michael Keaton as Adrian Toomes, the Vulture.

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Michael Keaton, is there a role you aren't just completely amazing in?

Keaton is a powerhouse actor who is incredible in every role he plays and he brought that talent to the villain.  The man who was once Batman (and forever will be one of the best ones) is able to ride that line of making the Vulture a true comic villain but without ever looking like he’s one-dimensional or without depth (a drawback that is, sadly, seen quite a bit in Marvel’s films).  Yes, Toomes is a weapons dealer out to make money and arm all the lowlifes with enough cash but he feels like he’s doing it for his own delusional reasons that he honestly believes in and, in doing so, legitimately comes off like a threat.  Keaton’s delivery stops him from feeling like a generic bad guy.  There’s a moment where he’s delivering the usual bad dude threat to our hero and it’s not the bowler hat, mustache twirling thing you would expect but something that sent chills up my spine and was something that was just awesome to watch.  So far, he might be the best villain the MCU has had.

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I want to be able to pull off that jacket.

The only real thing I didn’t enjoy about Homecoming was a single element from the Spider-Man mythology was strangely absent.  Since the origin story was abandoned, it was obvious that we weren’t going to see some of the same things this go around that we've already seen but one important facet (which I won’t go into detail about what it is because of Spoilers) wasn’t around.  There were moments that I thought this part would at least get passing reference but they never came.  This issue wasn’t a deal breaker because I still absolutely loved this film but this missing piece was a tad disappointing to me.

                                                                                                Sony Pictures Releasing
Man, if only I had superpowers in high school...it would have made things
a million times more difficult.

Spider-Man:  Homecoming is a great debut for Spidey’s solo adventure in the MCU and is a fantastic first step for this Sony and Marvel Studios venture.  It expertly captures the spirit of the comics from the days Parker was in high school, has a fantastic villain, contains some great action, and the film is very fun and extremely funny (special mention to the character of Ned because he was hysterical).  Yeah, I was disappointed that an element I know so well from my years of fandom was gone and some of the action moments were kinda hard to make out but, overall, this movie was just a blast and is easily my favorite Spider-Man film that has come out.  I know, I know, how on earth could it compete with Spider-Man 3, amirite?  I'm kidding, it's kinda lame to keep crapping on Spider-Man 3.  I mean, the film came out a decade ago, let's move on.

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