Note: This is a spoiler-free Spider-Man: Far From Home movie review
Here’s the deal. Avengers: Endgame is a movie that defines a generation of a franchise and moviegoers. The movie is universally acclaimed amongst movie fandom, and it will soon be the highest grossing film of all time.
The issue following a movie like Endgame is this — what’s next? Can we really give that job to just a friendly, neighborhood Spider-Man?
Spider-Man: Far From Home is a toned-down, low-stakes Marvel movie in every sense, but it’s funny, fun, and has a feel that will give Spidey fans a tingle.
The Right Stage for Spidey
It’s fitting that a Spider-Man film follows the scope and devastation that is the end of a giant chapter with Endgame. The teenage superhero’s franchise has always had more levity than all the others.
This fun and lighthearted ride makes Spider-Man: Far From Home the perfect next chapter in the Marvel franchise.
A consistent thread throughout the movie is the laughs for the audience, and they come in multiple ways.
Looking for the awkward teenager laughs? Look no further than Ned’s (Jacob Batalon) new found outlook on finding love in Europe. Speaking of love, Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) has something going on that has Peter feeling a little uneasy. Want the sarcastic tone and Marvel-level of moderate cursing? You know Samuel L. Jackson‘s Nick Fury has you covered.
And all of this without mention that Spider-Man himself is once again the naive, “aw shucks” teenage kid who is always unsure of himself right up until the moment he decides to be the ultimate badass. Peter Parker is surely the most unorthodox hero in the Marvel universe, but he’s also one of the most beloved by his faction of fans. Far From Home delivers on that promise once again.
Tom Holland can flat out act. It’s not like you’re not rooting for Spider-Man, but the 23-year-old makes it even easier. He plays the “innocent and surprised when he’s more than capable” as well as it can be played. Holland somehow casts doubt in the audience when we know he’ll succeed every time. It was obvious before, but it’s cemented now that Holland is the best Spider-Man we have ever seen (non-animated division).
Far From Home also hasn’t let go of Endgame (much like the rest of us), and they even do those callbacks in a lighthearted way. One comes your way right at the start of the movie and the other towards the end, but both will have you in a good mood.
A Mysterious Portrayal
While the dialed down intensity works for the majority of the movie, it does miss the mark in a large way with Mysterio.
Admittedly I don’t know much about the character other than the fact he has a sweet look. Unfortunately, that ends up being the best part about the newly-introduced character.
On the whole Jake Gyllenhaal is mediocre at best as the time-bending highflier with hopes of saving our world. It could be the writing or the acting, but the two just don’t fit well together.
Mysterio attempts to be a consoling influence on the insecure Spider-Man, but his heart-to-heart chats come off as stiff. He also has a monologue in the movie that is meant to inspire his audience and be a turning point, but it garners no reaction at all from the movie’s audience.
Low stakes are great in Far From Home when bringing the laughs and showcasing the Spider-Man we know and love. When no stakes are attached to a major character like Mysterio, the entire movie never has a “the world is in trouble” feel to it. That is vital to a stand out Marvel movie.
A Memorable Mid-Credits
And now for a full aside showcasing a mid-credits scene. The scene in Far From Home pulled one of the biggest, if not the biggest, reactions of the entire movie from this screener’s audience.
You’re always staying for the mid-credits and end-credits scenes anyway, because Marvel. But this one is legitimately something to get excited about.
Should I Go See Spider-Man: Far From Home?
For the Marvel fan, Spider-Man: Far From Home is a great complement to Endgame in that it calls back in a way you’ll enjoy and gives you a breather in terms of intensity. Mysterio misses the mark, but not in a way that makes the movie unenjoyable.
For the non-Marvel fan Far From Home stands out on its own. If you’re looking for a big movie that everyone will be talking about anyway, you can feel good about spending money on this one.
(Featured Image courtesy of EPK)