Time/place: 3:10 show at Krikorian San Clemente Sat. the 8th with Sydney
THE OPENING CREDITS:
As with pretty much every other Marvel movie character, Spider-Man was never on my childhood radar. When he first came to the screen in film form, as Tobey Maguire in 2002, I simply wasn’t impressed. The subsequent sequels and reboot did nothing to further my interest (especially Spider-Man 3… yikes), but when Underoos here made his cameo in Captain America: Civil War, I was smitten. Spidey was a fun, young kid, with enthusiasm for miles, who was a real treat to watch. Bringing this new version into his own movie, and featuring Michael Keaton(!), was probably going to be a good little romp, I figured. Little did I know how low I had set the bar!
Spider-Man: Homecoming takes its place in an esteemed category of movies for me with one simple trait — it’s pretty much perfect 🙂 . From its clever and hilarious opening, the tone was set for 2 hours of fantastic story and a ton of laughs.
Tom Holland is fully engaging as Peter Parker, and I can’t wait to see more of him in the future… and not just in red/blue spandex, either. But also definitely in red/blue spandex 🙂 . Though he is several years older than the 15-year-old he plays, Holland fits the range perfectly. It felt like I was watching a high school kid upon the screen, and that doesn’t often happen in movies. Parker’s classmates, especially his best friend, all work in a similar way — these were wonderfully performed, and written, teenagers, and that added to the fun of the movie. Of course, the picture is also just a ton of fun anyways.
Fantastically written and directed, Homecoming was filled with a skyscraper’s worth of genuine laughs. I don’t tend to laugh out loud much with movies, but by golly this one had me LOL’ing pretty consistently. The Guardians of the Galaxy movies do nothing for my sense of humor, but this sure as heck did. I wasn’t alone, either. The whole theater laughed and cheered throughout, and I really couldn’t have asked for a better audience to have experienced this movie with… including the cutie next to me. The humor was generally fairly smart, but so was the character development and the world creation. This movie most definitely takes place in New York, and quite a few laughs are elicited from that pitch-perfect environment presentation. Aunt May, while still quite a fox, is wonderfully more adorable than anything else. While the movie retains a light-hearted feel, that is not at all to say that it is light on sincerity of how it treats its characters. Our “villain,” played by the always fantastic Michael Keaton, is one of the least villainous bad guys from any Marvel movie thus far. As it comes about in his introduction, he’s just trying to make his way. Peter Parker, similarly, is being pulled in multiple directions… though to an even greater degree: an interest in love, a teenage-enhanced sense of belonging among his new superhero pals, scholastic every-day responsibilities, friendship. On top of all of this, he’s also in an almost father-son relationship with his reluctant mentor Tony Stark. There are some fantastic character and plot turns that keep the movie fresh and dramatically pleasing amidst the laughs and good fun, but I’ll let you catch those for yourself when you see it… because you should definitely see it 🙂 .
Some movie-viewing moments will always remain etched into my memory, such as when the audience cheered as the Avengers first assembled during battle in that wonderful rotating hero shot. Similarly, there is a moment in this movie in which the air was sucked out of the room… a pin could’ve dropped with deafening clarity. It was a perfectly played moment, and I will never forget it. You’ll know what I mean when you see it.
On the more technical/creative side, Spidey’s suit is brilliant in so many ways, as is how he makes use of his abilities. The other uses of tech in the movie are also clever and fun — I won’t say more here, but see it and you’ll understand. Sensing a trend here in what I think you should do?
From the opening Marvel logo, I had a grin on my face throughout most of the movie’s run-time. Every character beat was spot-on, messages were clear without being overbearing, and nothing about any character felt maniacal or simple. The violence dished out by the titular character is somewhat tempered in this movie, but purposefully so because of his age. In fact, the conclusions of the final act and the ensuing mid-credit sequence tell me everything I need to know about this friendly neighborhood Spider-Man… and it’s everything I could have wanted him to be. Absolutely everything.
I walked into the theater ready to be entertained, and at the very least, take in the next piece of the Marvel movie puzzle, but as the very final moments of the movie played out before the credits, and I grew a little misty-eyed at the joy and admiration of a great movie moment, I had become an unabashed fan of this Spider-Man kid… girl… boy. Whatever. I loved watching him on screen and I can’t wait to see him again!
I left the movie theater with several skips in my step and a profound childish excitement bubbling up in me. I had a great time with this movie, and with some reservation I say that it just might be the best Marvel movie, yet. That placement might not hold true as time moves on, but I broke my blog-silence here of several months (which I’ll address later) just to write about how much I loved this movie, so… that counts for somethin’!
LIKE or LOVE:
Love. Um, duh… did you not read all of that?? Spidey had already joined this universe in another movie, but this brings him full-circle as a well-rounded character that I am very much looking forward to watching again in his next adventure!