By Dave B.
In Spider-Man: Far From Home (Marvel), the world is coping with the loss of some of it’s most beloved heroes, particularly Iron Man. Meanwhile, Peter Parker, our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, is preparing for a class trip to Europe and hopes to woo his secret love interest. But a new threat has arisen and Parker must choose between being a “normal” teenager and accepting the mantle of the world’s savior bequeathed to him by Tony Stark.
Let’s start with the good: Spider-Man: Far From Home is a solid entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and is a decent introduction into Marvel’s next phase of onscreen storytelling. It’s pace drags a bit at times (especially near the beginning of the film), but there’s a lot of action, the CGI is ok, and the story generally keeps moving. The performances are good and Tom Holland is still the best Spider-Man that we’ve yet seen on film. Plus, the stakes are oddly compelling: the destruction of the world isn’t always at hand, but as an audience, we keenly feel (on many levels) the importance of Spider-Man winning his battles both against his enemies, as well as those against his own insecurities.
All that said Spider-Man, in its current MCU incarnation, needs to move on from the character being an awkward high schooler, sooner rather than later. Parker’s romantic travails do provide some occasionally hilarious comedic fodder, but more often than not, they slow down and muddle a story that already has a lot of moving pieces. Besides that, if there’s one glaring problem with Far From Home, it’s that it doesn’t completely succeed at being it’s own film due to being designed as bridge between Marvel movies that came before it and those that will come after.
I’ll admit, part of me is probably slightly biased to see the flaws in this film after recently seeing (and being blown away by) Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. But Spider-Man: Far From Home is just not a great movie in my view. It lacks the audacity of Spider-Verse and the sense of, well…homecoming that’s in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Far From Home serves it’s purposes: it entertains while making it unambiguously clear that Marvel has entered a new era. I both like it and recommend it. I just don’t think that Marvel fans need the incessant reminders that things will never be the same that Far From Home beats into us.
I have no clue what I'm doing, but I'll keep doing whatever it is to the best of my ability.