Written by Fajar binti Benjamin
Edited by Nimue
I recall watching the Spiderman: Far From Home trailers a couple of months back and thinking awh dang, Sony’s trailer staff have spoiled EVERYTHING. By golly, I was wrong. Those trailers hardly scraped the surface and if you haven’t watched the movie yet, don’t worry, my mouth is sealed. To reveal the twists and turns of this rollercoaster ride would be sacrilegious.
Let me begin by saying that the amount of fanservice this movie granted us in the form of Tom Holland being partially undressed is… noticeable. Definitely noticeable.
The story picks up pretty much where Endgame left us. Earthlings are mourning the deaths of beloved heroes, struggling to reconcile with this new reality where half of all people are reborn 5 years outdated (should Captain America have started a course on how to deal with this?) ⎼ not to worry though, the rebuilding is done with that healthy dose of millenial flippancy and it’s bound to crack a smile on the faces of the angstiest teens.
This time around, Peter Parker is given an opportunity to go to Europe with his Science Club buddies, including a moody yet charming MJ who makes his heart go doki-doki. But of course, that pesky power of his always comes with ridiculous responsibilities.
(Note: Doki Doki, or doki-doki (Japanese: ドキドキ Hepburn: Dokidoki) is a term for the sound of a beating heart in Japanese sound symbolism)
Coincidentally, monsters from a different dimension bubble up into existence around Venice and as an audience we’re faced with a sudden switch in perspective. How is Peter, a boy with the power to swing between buildings, supposed to take on giants formed from the elements? How is he to be the new Iron Man from within a suit that doesn’t shoot giant lasers? What does he bring to the table in a world where Captain Marvel and Doctor Strange exist? Nick Fury seems to think he can carry the weight of the world on his young, developing shoulders ⎼ a perplexing turn of character for the MCU’s biggest cynic ⎼ but it’s shown pretty handily that all Peter is good for is keeping people from being crushed by buildings.
The movie handles Peter’s double life with delicacy, giving us buoyant scenes of pure teenage ridiculousness right beside the usual CGI fight fests (though with delicious twists you should totally see for yourself).
The stakes are of course, lowered from the sky high heights Endgame brought us, but still enough to have us on the edge of our seats, truly feeling for this iteration of Peter’s plight. Helmed by Jon Watts (the same director as Homecoming), Far From Home enjoys the same consistent level of quality from every shot, insistent (yet not always successful) attempts at humor, charming dialogue from loveable characters as well as an amazingly memorable sequence fueled by effects (think Dr Strange or Ant Man but better).
However, the pacing of the movie leaves something to be desired. For the average movie goer, this is a non-issue. The movie is fun, vibrant, sweet and a visual treat. But to the eye of a (wannabe) movie connoisseur, the movie feels somewhat patched together, especially in the first act.
While many parallels can be drawn between this Spiderman movie and the last (the villain birthed as a direct consequence of Tony Stark’s actions, subplot of getting the girl, The Avengers always looming overhead), there are also many concepts dropped or picked up. Homecoming was an attempt to introduce more diversity into the MCU and it also relied on the convention of our preconceptions to drop a major plot twist (AKA The Vulture being in a biracial marriage). This movie’s message is motivated by a huge issue these days, which is the use of false media to manipulate people’s perceptions. Don’t believe everything you see has never been more true than it is today and this movie reflects that with grace.
At the end of the day Far From Home is yet another installment in the 22-long-movie franchise that is the MCU. Like all other MCU movies of late, it serves to move the world’s story forward, not just be a thing within itself. As a stand alone, it’s a fun movie, as the next episode, it’s an exciting new direction. It’s the perfect wrap up for phase 3.