If you grew up with Sam Raimi’s Spiderman triad just like I did, chances are you will not get as much excited for the new web-crawler movie. But, you better re-think again.
After the disastrous The Amazing Spider-Man, Sony Pictures reached a deal with Marvel Studios to finance, market and keep rights of the web-crawler in exchange of him appearing in MCU. Not a bad deal, I must say.
Directed by Jon Watts and penned by six writers, the second reboot aptly titled Spider-Man: Homecoming is a risky attempt that paid off eventually. The movie’s plot is straightforward: Peter Parker has to juggle high school, romance, Aunt May and bad guy: a thief with flying gizmos called the Vulture. He stumbled upon him after being shut-off by Tony Stark after his brief stint in Berlin and pursued the Vulture with help from his best friend. Well, Tony gave him a new Spidey suit so that also helped him throughout.
The changes that I liked here is that the new Peter focused more on proving himself to Tony Stark to become inducted as the new member of The Avengers rather than mooning over his sad life or romance. Oh, speaking of that, you can forget about cringing over Uncle Ben’s sad story or the radioactive spider bite, because there are none of them here.
Tom Holland is a British lad who is quintessentially charming as the fifteen-year-old Peter with a hot-banging body. His portrayal as Peter Parker is interesting. He reminds me of Tobey Maguire’s naïveté, but with less whines and more energy (remember the vlog scene? He is so chirpy!). We rarely see this Peter swings from building to building, but we did see him rescuing his schoolmates at Washington Monument, which was a crazy action sequence that is right up with Sam Raimi’s work. Besides that, Tom Holland also shared a great chemistry with Robert Downey JR, so watch out for some laugh-out-loud moments that will include an Indian wedding scene.
For the villain, there is Adrian Toomes aka The Vulture who holds grudges on big corporation. Long story short, Adrian found Chitauri technology after the alien invasion in the first Avengers movie and sell advanced weapons eight years later. That is until Peter tried to stop the operation and exposed his stint to the FBI. Michael Keaton is a great actor, but his portrayal as the Vulture failed to impress me. He tries hard to be Joker, but ends up reminding me of a cuckoo The Sandman by Thomas Haden Church. However, there is a heart-thumping revelation scene between Adrian and Peter, which I really enjoyed watching.
While the movie’s dangerous villain falls short on me, the Homecoming still offers plenty of other appeals: great action sequences, funny scenes and a new dynamic Peter Parker. There is a scene when Peter has to decide whether to join his classmate for some fun time in the pool or to go and take down the bad guys. We know which one he will choose, but that scene perfectly captured the reason I love Spider-Man. Because behind the mask, he is just a regular, nerdy boy like most of us who is eager to make a name for himself in this big, big world. Peter’s earnest desire to tackle on something he doesn’t necessarily understands is what made Homecoming worth the watch, or maybe even re-watch.
Disney actress Zendaya, who is billed as Spider-Man’s new co-star, piqued my interest. Her character, Michelle, or short for MJ, is a sassy, spunky and witty girl, which is a far cry from Kirsten Dunst or Emma Stone’s brainy blonde Gwen Stacy. The catch? She was only seen in sporadic scenes throughout the movie and is nicely preserved for the second. If any, I would watch the second installment solely based on this curiosity and what impact will she brings on our web-slinger. Kidding, but she is definitely a scene-stealer!
Total Score: 76/100.
See also: Why The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Is Messy!