So having just come out of Spider-Man: Homecoming, the first thing I have to say is that this movie simply blew me away.
Web me up and call me Shocker (still not apologising for my puns), this movie ticked literally all of my boxes. Before we start off with the official Spider-Man: Homecoming review, there is just one point of notice.
I am going to split this article up into a ‘Non-Spoiler’ and then a ‘Spoiler’ review so you can read the Non-Spoiler section first, watch the movie, then come back and read the ‘Spoiler’ part. Or just read the entire thing, whatever floats your goat. And by goat I mean spider.
Tom Holland’s performance
First thing’s first, let’s talk about Tommo over here. Unlike Gal Gadot who was fantastic as Wonder Woman in Batman V Superman but was kind of okay for her solo film, Tom Holland did not bring this film down in any way. His acting was realistic, his portrayal of Peter Parker was relatable, and boy is he toned.
There was never a moment in the film where I was thinking, “Wow I really wish that they’d cast Nat Wolff or Asa Butterfield instead”. But let’s be real, you’d have to be spectacularly bad to be a worse actor than Asa Butterfield in Ender’s Game (you have no idea how salty I still am about that film).
He’s so good of an actor, that in some scenes, I had vivid flashbacks of some of my more awkward experiences in high school shudders.
In any case, Tom Holland’s relatability, his humour, the relationships he has with the rest of the cast, it all built up to a fantastic performance, and I am happy that of all the potential Spider-men who were shortlisted for the role, he was the one who came out on top.
Also, the fact that he’s the youngest Spider-Man really goes a long way to believe he’s 15. Looking at you Tobey!
How does Adrian Toomes (The Vulture) hold up as a villain?
I reckon Adrian Toomes is one of the better villains in both Sony and Marvel superhero films. And casting Golden Globe Winner Michael Keaton for the role was such an amazing choice. You know, because of all his experience with fictitious characters with wings. i.e. Batman and Birdman.
Unlike some of the other Marvel villains, there were times when Adrian as the Vulture came on screen, and I was actually frightened (I may have lost control of my bladder but that’s beside the point). And to be honest, I couldn’t say the same for other villains like Ultron, despite ‘it’ being a cool villain.
Adrian was also a very complex character in of himself – he’s a simple working man trying to do everything he can to provide for his family. No matter the cost. And seeing how far down the rabbit hole he goes to try and achieve that is quite compelling.
Adrian’s interactions and ‘Stark’ contrasts with Peter also really enhanced the story. Where Peter is light-hearted and optimistic, Adrian is dark, brooding, and menacing. This combination provided us with a villain, so fierce, that I wasn’t sure whether Peter would actually come out on top. Because despite him being Spider-MAN, Peter is really just a child.
So while his villainy was a bit more grounded (ironic I know), and not as large scale as Ultron or Loki, I think I’d put the Vulture in Marvel Studios top 3 villains.
The supporting castWhy are these high school students so attractive? Source: TheMovieNetwork.com
I don’t need to say much about them because they made this film so much better. Their acting was solid, they brought so much life into the story and you got a real insight as to what high school was like for Peter Parker.
Zendaya’s character – Michelle – stole every scene she was in. Ned (Jacob Batalon) provided the most realistic portrayal of what anyone would be like if they’d discovered their best friend was a superhero (shut up, that’s not really a spoiler. It was in all the trailers dammit!). And Aunt May (Marisa Tomei)… Damn. That is all.
I think this was one of the most grounded Spider-Man and Marvel films. The character motivations were defined and believable. The only unrealistic thing that I noticed was how attractive Peter was – damn boy, you can ask me out to Homecoming any time you like.
While there were only one or two events which didn’t make sense, and only existed for plot development, I have to say that I would recommend anyone and everyone to go see this film! It’s something you can take the entire family to watch as well. Unfortunately for the hardcore DC fans, it’s just as dark as most other Marvel movies, so they are undoubtedly going to be disappointed on that front.
One of the best aspects about this film was how much it reminded me of high school… masquerading as a superhero aside. Granted it was only three years ago, the scenes were so awkwardly reminiscent of my times at school it was hard not to relate to it.
The performances were fantastic, the threats felt real, and it was really the small things that made this film enjoyable till the absolute end.
So all in all, I’d give Spider-Man: Homecoming 8.5/10 Karens.
To Director Tom Watts and the Writers of Spider-Man: Homecoming, if you’re reading this, I have to say – well bloody done.
The transition that Peter has from being enthusiastic and reckless, to a thoughtful and empathetic person, was expertly handled and executed. We got from the get go that Peter’s actions had consequences. Whether it was the destruction of the deli, or the splitting of the ferry, we saw that Peter had a long way to go before he was at the level of Captain America, and could be a fully responsible vigilante.
And just to side-track for a bit, I don’t actually blame him. If Tony had been a better mentor, giving Peter actual tasks or small-time missions, I reckon as a character, Peter would have been satiated.
It was Tony’s denial, by absence, that forced Peter’s hands/web-slingers, to demonstrate his worth to join the Avengers, by fighting off villains, he really wasn’t prepared for.
Let’s be real, if Adrian wasn’t so obsessed and distracted with stealing the Chitauri tech, he could have murdered Peter hands down. Having said that, if Tony wasn’t so negligent with Peter, much like how his dad was towards him, then there wouldn’t have been a movie, and there wouldn’t have been as much character development.
Returning to my point, a big part of this film, if I hadn’t made that abundantly clear at this point, was Peter’s development.
Starting off the film, everyone recognised the fact that Spider-Man, rather than Peter Parker, is a hero. Peter himself confessed that he thought that way, when he confirms Ned’s thoughts about the weirdness behind being so popular as Spider-Man, but with no one realising that he is Spider-Man. Because in the end, Spider-Man gets all the credit.
He can’t do that with his old super-suit. Source: Slashfilm.com
And the suit helps Peter be more of a hero. It’s not hard for us to see that yes, Tony’s Spider Suit lets Peter do so many things, that he normally couldn’t. And it just keeps on getting hammered home that the suit, and Karen, allow him to do these fantastic feats – like saving his friends in the Washington Monument.
So when Tones takes the suit away, Peter stops being Spider-Man and resumes being himself because he doesn’t see himself as being the hero without it.
But that moment when he’s looking at himself in the reflection, half Peter and half Spidey, besides from being a pretty nice throwback to the comics, is also the defining turning point that Peter has when he starts believing in himself. There’s no one to come and help, he’s on his own, he grows up. And that was so beautiful. I got actual goosebumps when he screamed. God damn.
So here I’m just going to be listing all the small, specific things, which either added or slightly took away from the film (depending on how you see it)
1 – The Soundtrack (Start playing Blitzkrieg Bop).
2 – Zendaya. Can we all just give a second to marvel at Zendaya? She’s funny and quirky, and by far my favourite thing about her was that during the gym class she was reading a book ‘On Bondage’! Couldn’t ask for a better girl next door.
The spoiler that we find out, but you’d probably had guessed during the film, was that she is also called MJ – A.K.A. Michelle Jane Watson (rather than Mary), so hopefully we get to see some romance between her and Tom Holland in the next film.
My guess is, is that she already knows that he’s Spider-Man, and by the way that she looks at him after he runs to meet Happy Hogan in the bathroom, I’d say dat girl be smitten.
3- I didn’t care too much Laura Harrier’s character Liz, but I liked the idea of her. It was so much fun seeing Peter interacting with her as a crush, and then Karen wing-manning him. It was cute. Surely it reminded you guys of your first crushes too?
4 – KAREN!
5 – I also thought the new spin on Flash was pretty cool. While he isn’t a jock per se, he’s still popular in the fact that he’s a DJ, smart, and competitive. He does remain faithful to the comics by making Peter’s life hell, but I think that’s because he’s jealous.
I got the impression that where Flash needs to work so hard to even get close to Peter’s level academically, Peter performances effortlessly, which I imagine would only frustrate Flash even more. And what better way to torment your better than to get the entire school to chant ‘Penis Parker’ on repeat.
6 – I loved Donald Glover. Tony Stark was still a dick. I kind of liked the ‘Iron-Spider’ suit that Tony made. And I have 100% faith that Marvel Studios have no idea what to do with Gwenyth Paltrow as Pepper Potts.
P.S. How’d you enjoy the end-credit scene?