Two movie posters. I love the drawn one most. (via Marvel Entertainment)
The Peter Parker of this film is a nerd… but he’s OK with the label. I love this.
No longer is he a sad sack or tortured soul superhero. It’s implied the strife in Peter Parker’s life still happened, but they’re skipping over it. It’s refreshing too fast forward past all that and gets to what make’s Spider-man so appealing… He’s not only a superhero but also develops and makes his own tools. That fact that his webshooters, costume, goggles, etc are DIY, he’s like the STEM poster-figure of today’s tech-bathed youth. It only makes sense. Technology, science, programming are no longer synonymous with social rejects, but it’s a way of life. Were barraged with so many challenges every day, like the element14 IoT on Wheel Design Challenge.
Webshooter concept art. Don't you just want to make this real? I do. (via Marvel Entertainment)
Leaving 80’s Hollywood stigma behind, we venture into a new type of high school science fiction drama. With it, the same relationship dramas surface, house parties, going to dances, and bullies. But, the bully is far different. A note on the bully in the school, “Flash.” He’s not bigger or stronger than Peter Parker, the bullying is different. Instead, the social divide that gives him the power to bully is an economic divide. I found that to be very telling of the times, with the concept of the 1% and the young people in entertainment everyon wants to be.
This movie follows right on the tail of Captain America Civil War, where you even get to see another view of the major battles featuring Spider-man. Our hero, Parker, is quickly left behind after the events in Civil War. Which still leaves Parker with a sense of accomplishment and duty, finding nowhere to fulfill that destiny. The current Avengers leader, Tony Stark, is off doing whatever. Parker is vacillating.
Enter our villain, the Vulture! AKA, Adrian Toomes. Technically, he doesn’t become the Vulture until his livelihood is taken away from him by uncaring corporate bureaucrats. A fitting reason as any to turn to a life of crime, I suppose. However, it isn’t criminal right away… it is simply another instance of people engineering their own gear. The Vulture and his crew develop weapons out of alien technology left behind in the first Avengers movie. They take those weapons and sell them to criminals. That’s when they went bad. Surrounded by this ilk, the Vulture and his crew became worse. Desperation drives them. The 99% figuring out a way to get by perhaps? The writers are definitely playing on today’s zeitgeist.
Vulture concept art (via Marvel entertainment)
A note about the villain: I was worried since I never, ever, EVER thought that the Vulture could be a cool villain. I am so glad that the comic accurate characters that Marvel films produce were dropped here.
The Vulture had one main engineering genius building all the devices. He was more interested in making “the things” than he is being a bad guy. But, of course, he was a little bullied by the more macho characters. But isn’t that the case in every movie?
The film then turns into, more or less, a heist movie with our hero trying to stop said heist. Usually, it’s the main characters pulling off the heist, for the record – but now here. Think Oceans 11+, Fast and Furious, etc. Visuals and sound during the super-people fights are great. Shocking and fun too look at, as all the Marvel movies seem to do.
-- I am going to skip a lot of plot details, twists, notable jokes, and go right to the end. --
Despite how I assume the writers want you to feel… I felt bad for the villain at the end. His life, his family, his employees all rely on his pilfering of super-gear. Spider-Man, of course, stops him. But not before the Vulture is pushed to the brink ─ risks his life to just provide a stable lifestyle for his family. The film ends with that family in turmoil. Again, I was feeling bad for the bad guy.
Visually, the film is colorful, global and open feeling. However, I wouldn’t say I particularly wowed by any set pieces or scenes. The CGI was noticeable, Spidey didn’t always look real. No swinging high through the city like in Raimi’s films. A lot of missed opportunity to push it beyond ‘just good.’ But, it’s on the same level with most of the Marvel films. For all intents and purposes, it is a true cape-movie.
It’s fun from start to end. I never cringed once to anything. Worth seeing, especially if you’ve watched the rest of the MCU films. However, you could see this as a rental/at home. The only benefit at the theatre would be the sound in fight scenes. Oh… and it will be available to rent very soon. So, rent it!
My rating - 4.22 out of 5.00
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