REVIEW: Spider-man: Far From Home

THE STORY

Peter Parker’s class vacation to Europe is interrupted once he is enlisted by Nick Fury to stop a new threat while being paired with the enigmatic new hero Mysterio.

THE REVIEW

After the monumental financial and critical success of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-man: Far From Home had a tough act to follow in closing out Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Although it doesn’t carry the epic scope or core shattering consequences as Endgame does, Far From Home delivers a fun and more emotional than expected Spider-man adventure.

But just as much as Endgame, this entry is also full of spoilers, which means that in order to preserve the surprises (of which there are plenty) and twists (of which some are quire predictable) some of the more interesting aspects of the film will not be discussed.

Tom Holland returns as our favorite web-slinger for the fifth time and he stills shines in the role, giving us the most accurate version of Peter Paker(though there’ll always be a soft and special place for Tobey Maguire), embodying the superhero’s physicality and awkwardness to perfection.

Jake Gyllenhaal is introduced into the MCU as the enigmatic new character Quentin Beck AKA Mysterio, who claims to be from the Multiverse – basically, another dimension – who is hunting The Elementals, creatures based on the different elements that are seeking to destroy our world just as they destroyed his.

Mysterio is easily the most interesting aspect of this sequel as he represents some of the best and worst elements of the film. On the positive side, Gyllenhaal is excellent as the mysterious character, with his usual charm and off-kilter charisma giving Beck more life than what’s on the page.

Also, Mysterio’s suit is absolutely fantastic and stands as one of my personal favorites within the MCU, hewing extremely close to the original comic book look maintaining that larger than life, otherworldly, technological bent without being outright silly.

As for the bad… well, I can’t really get into that without going into spoilers, so I’ll just say that he shares too many motivations and traits that we’ve seen from previous Marvel characters, making him feel a little stale. And even when Marvel tries to do this as a metacommentary on one of their biggest issues, it feels like an idea that’s left half baked in order to get to some big action sequences.

Speaking of action sequences, Far From Home includes some standouts from the MCU, in particular from the last thirty minutes, with one scene in particular being among the most interesting and visually stunning from all 23 films next to Dr. Strange’s trip through the Multiverse.

Just as much Spider-Man: Homecoming was a “John Hughes” Marvel film, so is Far From Home, but whereas the first was more Breakfast Club, this one appears to be much more influenced by classics Sixteen Candles or Pretty in Pink… if those films had giant monster terrorizing cities and superpowers.

This means that Far From Home is almost as much a romantic comedy as much as it is a superhero adventure, with Peter and MJ’s (Zendaya) relationship being a very large focus. This gives Zendaya the opportunity to continue presenting her excellent deadpan comedic abilities while being given more dramatic moments this time around, also excelling at those. It’ll be interesting to see where the dynamic between these two characters is taken in future installments.

It’s refreshing seeing Spidey go international rather than stay locked in New York as he usual is, – the exception being space! in Avengers: Infinity War – with the filmmakers taking full advantage of the beautiful and diverse locations (as well as the massive budget I’m sure) with the story going to Venice, Prague and Berlin.

On a quick last note, mention and praise should go to returning Academy Award winning composer Michael Giacchino, who as usual delivers with a big, bombastic, fun and heroic score.

THE CONCLUSION

Spider-Man: Far From Home is a massively fun, funny, exciting and much more emotional than expected closing chapter for Marvel’s Phase 3 which should leave fans of the web crawler delighted, particularly with the introduction of Mysterio and the return of an always Tom Holland, and excited for what’s to come.

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