MOVIE THEATER REVIEW: “Spider-Man: Far From Home” stars Tom Holland (In the Heart of the Sea, The Impossible ), Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, The Incredibles), Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler, South Paw), Marisa Tomei (The Big Short, My Cousin Vinny), Jon Favreau (Chef, Couples Retreat), Zendaya (The Greatest Showman, K.C. Undercover [TV series]), Jacob Batalon (North Woods, Every Day), Tony Revolori (The Grand Budapest Hotel, Dope), Angourie Rice (The Nice Guys, These Final Hours), Remy Hii (Marco Polo [TV series], Better Man), Martin Starr (Freaks and Geeks [TV series], Silicon Valley [TV series]), Cobie Smulders (Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, Safe Haven), and J.B. Smoove (Hall Pass, Curb Your Enthusiasm [TV series]). It is directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car, Clown), and written by Chris McKenna (Ant-Man and the Wasp, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) and Erik Sommers (The Lego Batman Movie, American Dad! [TV series]). Following “Avengers: Endgame,” Peter Parker (Holland) adjusts to his life without Tony Stark and the pressures that follow when he is called to save the world while on a Europeon field trip.
Why the heck is this film placed at the end of the MCU’s phase three? Doesn’t “Endgame” feel like the finisher of this phase, let alone grand franchise? I don’t know, it seems weird to me is all I’m saying. “Spider-Man: Far From Home” is that one flick I didn’t realize was out until the night before I saw it, nor did I have any expectations walking in. Am I invested into this universe now that our mainstay Avengers are done? Not really. But hey, there’s nothing else playing in theaters and “Homecoming” wasn’t too shabby, so why not give this one a shot? “Far from Home” is an entertaining, visually beautiful film with wonderful locations and plenty of action to keep all fans in their seats and drooling at the mouths. However, outside of its aesthetics and girth, there isn’t much to parade around with this venture, making for a night of no surprises or story weight. Let’s elaborate. “Far from Home” is a bold move for Spidey. He’s not in New York anymore, going all over Europe for a field trip and to unknowingly stop bad guys. Mysterio (Gyllenhaal) is a new figure in this, and Nick Fury (Jackson) returns to aide Spidey in his new escapades. I was intrigued at how Fury was attached to this, considering how almost all of the original stars of the Avengers have left. I guess Samuel L. Jackson is always there, ready for the call. We had to have someone be the Tony Stark figure, am I right? Speaking of Stark, he’s everywhere in this film, yet at the same time not. While not alive, Iron Man surely has his grip on this plot as he is all that is talked about. Peter needs to live up to Tony, Peter doesn’t have what it takes to be Tony, we all wish Tony was here; while I find this aspect to give a solid emotional grounding to Parker’s next journey, it felt a bit too bloated at times. There were moments where I wished Spider-Man wasn’t so attached to the MCU so I can just see him handle his own problems without having to mention Stark every five or ten minutes. But this is minor, never really getting on my nerves though creating some concern nonetheless. As a whole, this movie stands on its own and seeks to excite, and as long as I’m entertained I guess it’s enough to warrant the stamp of approval. The movie has great cinematography, as well as visual effects, music, and locations. It’s a great film to just watch and I liked the feeling it evoked. Sure, the whole issue caused by the finger snap in “Infinity War” could create some holes in continuity (though they did service this with solid jokes), but the characters we enjoyed from the first outing are here again and delivering on what we liked about them to begin with. There’s a lot to cram into this adventure, but for the most part everything is juggled fine. Characters are given enough screentime (though J.B. Smoove was highly underutilized), there are good jokes, and the major plot points are hit. Really, what it boils down to is the conflicts that Peter has to face in this movie and making sure all of them are developed enough. Did I like the villain in this flick? For the most part, yes. However, the direction they went with him from beginning to end made the flow a bit messy. The film kind of just starts and stops, making sure to give enough high school drama, then sucker punch you with the actual stakes of the world. I never really cared for the type of villain Marvel chose to utilize in this feature, either. I won’t say what that villain type is, but I will say that it has always made for a less exciting experience in terms of crafting a good character. He was funny, don’t get me wrong, and greatly acted, but I prefer stronger villains personally. I guess this had to go into effect to make it easier on the kid; I mean, he is in high school after all. What I did love about this villain was mainly the visuals involved with him. Man, the direction of this movie led to some trippy moments that I thought were awesome; they were certainly the highlights of the film. Everything progresses for our main characters in this movie. Relationships are tested, and hold promise of what’s to come for a potential third outing. I think what was done in “Far from Home” is serviceable to the new trilogy Marvel has cooking. It’s a fun adventure that holds good laughs and action sequences. But overall, I wouldn’t hold it up to the highest of standards. There isn’t too much to chew on with this story (even though the writers try to with the whole Stark mentioning), leaving for a ride more so for simple entertainment than story meat. You’ll have fun, especially if you’re a Spider-Man fan and maybe more so than “Homecoming,” but it does what we expect. FINAL SCORE: 82%= Juicy Popcorn
Here is the trailer: