Your movie review
JAMES Burgess is a 27-year-old performance, drama and theatre graduate. The former Fallibroome High School pupil has attended the BAFTA Film Awards in London every year since 2009, meeting stars including Dame Helen Mirren, Christian Bale, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emma Thompson.
James lives on St Ives Close in Macclesfield. You can visit his website at jabfilmreviews.blogspot. com. Spider-Man Homecoming, 12A, 133 mins. Marvel Studios. Starring: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr, Marisa Tomei, Donald Glover, Logan Marshall-Green, John Favreau, Chris Evans, Tony Revolli and Gwyneth Paltrow. Rating: THE sixth movie, third reboot in 15 years and third casting change after intentionally meek Tobey Maguire with Sam Raimi (2000-2008) and the nervy, captivating Andrew Garfield (2010-2015) with the aptly named Marc Webb – (500) Days Of Summer.
Garfield still remains my favourite actor in the role, but crucially I think the original Raimi Trilogy (2002-2007) are far better films than any that have followed subsequently.
This has very little to do with Maguire’s performance, ironically enough and has far more to do with his always excellent, conflicted, soulful foil – James Franco as Harry Osbourne, who worked with Raimi again, playing the titular magician in 2013’s outstanding revisionist origin-reboot Oz: The Great And Powerful. Not to mention a maniacallycackling Willem Dafoe as his father in that trilogy – the fantastic, gleefully vengeful father and junior of Green Goblins!
Now, with Sony’s studio-head Amy Pascal and producers Matt Tolmach and Avi Arad to change up that iconic red and blue webslinger who’s adorned many a bedroom wall, billboard or bus the world over, it’s 21-year-old Tom Holland (19 when he was cast).
Holland is very strong in the role; performatively, emotionally and physically, without ever feeling nervous or phased by being the webbed figurehead and not only playing the messy duality of Peter Parker/SpiderMan, but also joining as Marvel’s property for the first time, owing to Disney and Marvel not wanting their most iconoclastic character to lose his spun strand of comic-book credentials.
As much as I love the universe crossover with the Avengers, post-credit Easter-egg cameos (Downey Jr. – tired, Paltrow – underused and Chris Evans – funny), Jon Watts’s film doesn’t retain the grandiose potency of Raimi’s trilogy, which the character had tenfold when he was on his own.
Its ratio of grand-scale set pieces to zippy comedy is frustratingly unbalanced. There’s too much high-school angst, not enough origin development or chance for Holland to show nearly enough pathos.
Michael Keaton is effortlessly terrific as the villainous Vulture, channelling his inner Buffalo Bill. My favourite scene has a huge, yet small-scale, domesticated twist with moody cinematography and tense revelation during a deceptively convivial exchange at traffic-lights.
There’s a well-staged van heist, a highlight scaled up Washington monument with Michael Giacchino’s trademark tinkly, perpetual score. Slight, but very entertaining.