Rating – ★★★★
It was only months ago that Marvel smashed box office sales with Avengers: Endgame, cementing itself as one of the highest grossing movies in cinema history. It was an event that took 22 films and 11 years of intricate planning, character development, rich storytelling and a slew of great moments to reach its final conclusion. An epic that delivered what was promised and then some. With that being the end of an era, there has been many questions as to where the next phase would be going…
Earth is now coming to terms with the change in time since the blip (the name given for the snap) brought all those who disappeared back into the world five years later. Peter and most of his classmates being amongst the list of people who fell as a result of Thanos’ plan. Peter expecting the events of Endgame to be the last real threat, wishes to go back to living his life as a normal kid. Whilst on a school trip around Europe, he finds Nick Fury at his doorstep, reeling him back into the superhero world. This is where he meets Quentin Beck aka Mysterio, who is from a different Earth from another universe. He is here to warn S.H.I.E.L.D. of a looming threat which completely obliterated his own world. Peter is left with a choice, continue his responsibility as Spider-Man and help Beck/Fury save the planet, or go back to his vacation and live the rest of his life as Peter Parker.
Starting with the hilarious montage video to the fallen hero’s of Endgame, to the song of Whitney Houston’s ‘I Will Always Love You’, Spider-Man: Far From Home very quickly reminds us that this is a film that will have a very different tone to what we’ve just previously seen. Much like with Homecoming, the stakes are high enough to justify a solo movie without it being unfulfilling in comparison to the goliath stakes set by Endgame. I would even go as far as to say this is the most definitive Spider-Man movie we’ve ever seen on the big screen, which is interesting to think given that roughly 10% of the movie is actually shot in Spideys ‘neighbourhood’ New York.
Far From Home manages to capitalise on the achievements set by Homecoming and expands upon the potential of Spider-Man’s development as the next Tony Stark. Tom Holland’s portrayal of the character seems to be improved with each time he takes the mantle, never losing the charm or awkwardness that comes with such a character. His interactions with classmate Ned, Nick Fury and potential love interest MJ are all a result of both Holland’s comedic timing and the clever writing in which he works with.
This is the first time Mysterio has been utilised in a live action Spider-Man movie and it couldn’t have been handled any better. Jake Gyllenhaal seems the perfect casting as the devilishly smart Quentin Beck, really reaching the bar that was previously set by Micheal Keaton’s ‘Vulture’ in Homecoming. He commands the stage in every scene he appears and fits wonderfully within the MCU.
Visually this is one of the most striking films for the MCU to date, one scene in particular feeling reminiscent (whilst also surpassing) the level of clever CGI set by Doctor Strange in 2016. A mind boggling segment that really showcases how good effects can be when applied the right way.
Homecoming has never been a highlight of the franchise for me as I felt it didn’t dive deep enough into the character of Peter Parker, feeling rather tame in comparison to what Sam Raimi managed to achieve over a decade before hand. Fortunately, Jon Watts really finds his rhythm for his second direction, making Far From Home feel more like the Spider-Man film I had been crying out for.
Oh and also, that damn mid-credit scene. Thankyou!