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Spider-Man: Homecoming

Spiderman: Homecoming

(Jon Watts)

A successful return to a fun character. Marvel has another winner under their belt and has finally brought on a relatable and compelling villain, something the franchise films have been in dire need of.

After the events of Civil War, Peter Parker is able to keep the high-tech Spider suit Stark created and takes it upon himself to help the neighbourhood. When he sees common crooks wielding super weapons, custom made from after the events of The Avengers, Spiderman alerts Tony Stark. Stark has no time for small stuff like this, so who can Peter Parker turn to? He must look to himself, put aside his inexperience and become the hero he is destined to be. Stop those criminals, find the manufacturer and stop being a nerdy and awkward teenager around the girl he likes.

3rd times a charm? I'm still a big fan of Raimi's Spiderman 2, but I would put Homecoming on par with that film for the Spiderman series. The film is able to balance humour and action well, giving the viewer someone more relatable than the previous 'heroes' on the screen. This is a kid who thinks everything that is happening to him is spectacular, or amazing (see what I did there) and we are slowly moving away from the burdened hero. This gives this film the advantage of having a lot more fun with the silly concepts it throws at us, all while keeping it grounded with a compelling villain.

Michale Keaton rocks in this film, his character actually has understandable motivations. No longer are we concerned with world domination, this is smaller scale, which ironically raises the stakes. We've been bombarded with building exploding, world's colliding and hell breaking lose so often that we've become desensitized to it all. Now here's a guy manufacturing weapons from alien tech, working small time and on the ground floor. It's almost as if the people at Marvel listen to the criticism of the their franchise, and actually make ways to improve it. They have given us something a little different here and it works.

The film has some exciting action sequences, one involving a ferry, the other at the Washington Monument. Those sure are fun, but far from the best scenes this film has to offer. There's a scene where Keaton and Holland are in a car together and Keaton delivers some chilling lines that cranks the tension up tenfold. No overacting, just one guy having a conversation with another. Very subtle, but very convincing. Another performance from Keaton that makes me so glad to see him have a career resurgence.

Tom Holland is probably the best version of Spiderman we've gotten so far. He manages to blend innocence, brilliance and comical one-liners better than any previous entries. It might help that he is actually the youngest actor to portray the character. He has arguably the best looking suit as well.

Not everything is perfect. One too many hot aunt May jokes and an unearned ending where Stark wraps everything nicely in a bow for him takes the film down a peg, but otherwise, this is an enjoyable superhero film.