REVIEW: ‘Spi­der-man: Far From Home’ does its job

The Saline Courier - - NEWS - By J.T. John­son

Af­ter the events of “Avengers: Endgame”, Spi­der-man needs a vacation. Thank­fully, the field trip taken in “Spi­der-man: Far From Home” is one worth tak­ing.

Spi­der-man is still reel­ing from the death of Tony Stark in “Endgame” and wants noth­ing more than to just be the friendly neigh­bor­hood Spi­der-man that he once was be­fore Thanos hap­pened.

Of course, that can’t hap­pen now that he’s been in space and fought aliens, in­clud­ing the mas­sive fight at the end of “Endgame.” Once he is on his trip with his friends Ned (Jacob Bat­alon), MJ (Zen­daya) and other kids from his class, Peter Parker (Tom Hol­land) con­fronts a mys­te­ri­ous wa­ter crea­ture. While Peter tries to face the crea­ture, it is ul­ti­mately de­stroyed by a new hero on the scene that is even­tu­ally called Mys­te­rio.

Later, Peter is con­fronted by Nick Fury (Sa­muel L. Jack­son) and even­tu­ally in­tro­duced to Quentin Beck (Jake Gyl­len­haal), the man be­hind Mys­te­rio’s mask. Ac­cord­ing to Quentin, he is from an al­ter­nate world in a par­al­lel uni­verse. This world was de­stroyed by the Ele­men­tals and now they’re wreak­ing havoc on our world and Spi­der-man and Mys­te­rio seem to be the only ones that can stop them.

The movie is filled to the brim with the light­hearted tone that made “Spi­der-man: Home­com­ing” such a fun film to watch. How­ever, the dif­fer­ence with this film is that Peter is fac­ing the fact that he has stepped out onto a big­ger stage than simply op­er­at­ing in New York. Ev­ery­one from Nick Fury to Happy Ho­gan (Jon Favreau) is asking whether he’s up to the task of tak­ing over for Tony, the one man who thought he was his per­fect successor.

The movie def­i­nitely con­fronts the idea that Peter is a 16-year-old kid that has had to grow up fast be­cause of his pow­ers. As he states sev­eral times in the movie, all he wants to do is en­joy his vacation and tell MJ how he re­ally feels about her. The teenager in him wants to leave the su­per­hero gig be­hind, but he ul­ti­mately knows that he can’t.

The re­la­tion­ship be­tween Peter and MJ is ac­tu­ally han­dled re­ally well in the film and I en­joyed the chem­istry be­tween Hol­land and Zen­daya. They’ve def­i­nitely taken the char­ac­ter of MJ in a dif­fer­ent, yet, re­fresh­ing di­rec­tion and I can’t wait to see where this re­la­tion­ship will go in fu­ture in­stall­ments. If you’re a fan of Ned, on the other hand, I will ad­mit that they give him a story point that pretty much takes him out of the action for the most part.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s han­dled well and, to be hon­est, this film’s story re­ally doesn’t have a place for Ned. Still, I know that he is a fan fa­vorite from “Home­com­ing” so it’s worth men­tion­ing his more lim­ited screen time in this en­try.

Then there is Gyl­len­haal as Mys­te­rio. If you know the comic books at all, then you know where his story is ul­ti­mately go­ing. Thank­fully, Gyl­len­haal is more than up to the task of play­ing this crazy char­ac­ter and he does the char­ac­ter jus­tice as he seems to have had a lot of fun play­ing this char­ac­ter.

The action fea­tured in this story is a lit­tle more grounded than what we got in the epic “Endgame,” but it is no less thrilling es­pe­cially for a Spi­der-man film. The movie has sev­eral ma­jor set pieces that com­pli­ment the over­all story. I can’t dive into too many of them as they would spoil cer­tain parts of the movie, but what I can say is that they are fun to watch and Spidey def­i­nitely has plenty to do this time around.

Look­ing at the big­ger pic­ture that is the Mar­vel Cin­e­matic Uni­verse, this film had two goals. It had to act as a sort of “epi­logue” to “The In­fin­ity Saga” that just fin­ished, but it also had to briefly show us where the MCU is go­ing next.

Thank­fully, “Far From Home” not only serves those two goals, it also turns out to be another thrilling Spi­der­man film that ev­ery­one can en­joy.

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