Spider-Man: Far from Home (2019)
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I somehow managed not to see a trailer for Spider-Man: Far From Home. Not online, and not in the movie theater despite my attendance record. I had not seen a single frame of this movie before I sat down to watch it. If I mention it, it's that 1) it's a rare occurence for a blockbuster like this and 2) it makes me realize how being a comic book fan essentially pre-spoils you. The movie unfolds as if the audience doesn't know a thing about Mysterio, but of course, some of us do. How does this play if you don't know anything about the source material? I have no clue. Jake Gyllenhaal does a great job with him, at least until the script requires him to go a bit arch, and I like how MCU history was purposed to create and motivate the character. The Homecoming series still has a claim on having the MCU's best villains. My main beef with the first movie was that it had too much Iron Man in it. I'd heard the trailer leaned pretty heavily on that as well, and while it's true that Tony Stark's sacrifice haunts Far From Home through and through - it's as much a reaction to it as it is an Endgame epilogue that addresses the 5-year "blip" - it felt more natural and let Spider-Man breathe a lot more. Breathe but not rest. As an action spectacular, it bounces along quite nicely, has some fun cringy teenage romance, incredible visuals worthy of Mysterio, and an international scope. Could do with less of Peter's doofy teachers however (I thought this was supposed to be a school for over-achievers?). Plus, some crazy crazy crazy mid- and end-credit scenes.
A pretty well put together and executed summer blockbuster. Tom Holland's second outing as the webslinger is packed with a solid storyline, some great special effects, and plenty of humor to go around. Jake Gyllenhaal plays a good villain and is a bit more suave and down to earth than the zainy version I was expecting. I liked it better than Homecoming and if I'm honest it's probably in my top 5 Marvel films after just a single viewing.
The special effects really pop, without spoiling I have to say that not being able to trust what you see was used to excellent effect in this one. Hats off to the FX team and the storyboard folks.
That mid-credits scene... HOLY CATS!
Meh. The Spider-man comedian shtick is fine by 4 minute intervals in overall bigger scale movies but on its own, it wears thin before the first act is even underway.
This feels less like what a Spider-man movie should be and more like a tired old tv sitcom for teenagers interrupted by action scenes.
Most of the cast does its best but it just never gets there. Maybe they should recycle the Community writers and swap them for real movie screenwriters if they want to get this franchise off the ground it's stuck to.
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In 3 official lists
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This movie ranks #25 in Box Office Mojo's All Time Worldwide Box Office
This movie ranks #42 in Rotten Tomatoes's Top 100 Movies of All Time
This movie ranks #158 in Box Office Mojo's All Time Adjusted Box Office