Saturday, July 8, 2017

Spider-Man: Homecoming

On Thursday night I saw an early screening of Spider-Man: Homecoming and I absolutely loved it!  What made it so much fun is that Peter Parker is finally portrayed by an age-appropriate actor as a wisecracking and nerdy high school student dealing with both his superpowers and the everyday problems of a 15-year-old, like who to take to the Homecoming dance.  Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton) owns a salvage company tasked with cleaning up after the Battle of New York until Stark Industries and the federal government create the Department of Damage Control and take over.  Bitter about losing so much revenue, Toomes keeps pieces of the Chitauri technology to create weapons to sell on the black market.  Eight years later, Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is still on a high after his experiences with Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) and is finding it hard to settle down to real life in high school.  He wants to be an Avenger but Stark wants him to start slow as a friendly neighborhood superhero (in some really amusing scenes).  Meanwhile, Toomes has become the Vulture with a crew who rob the D.O.D.C. for more alien technology to keep up their supply and Spider-Man attempts to stop him, often needing to be rescued by Iron Man (with some fun action sequences involving Peter's Decathlon team in Washington, D.C. and a fight with the Vulture on the Staten Island ferry).  Tony Stark takes away his Stark Industries-enhanced suit so Spider-Man must go it alone in an epic confrontation with the Vulture.  I thought Michael Keaton's Vulture was a very ordinary villain but I absolutely loved Holland's performance because of his impetuosity and awkwardness.  His interactions with his friends Ned (Jacob Batalon), Flash (Tony Revolori), Michelle (Zendaya), and Liz (Laura Harrier) are incredibly amusing.  I laughed out loud when Peter and Ned talked about building the Death Star out of legos!  I also think the mentor relationships with Tony and Happy (Jon Favreau), who is his minder, are great.  The action sequences are fine (although I wish the final confrontation hadn't been at night because it was so dark that I sometimes had a hard time seeing what was going on) but I had a lot more fun with the character development and dialogue.  It is such a fun and lighthearted movie and I highly recommend it.

Note:  The Captain America (Chris Evans) PSAs used at the school are hilarious.  I also loved it when Peter's Decathlon teacher (Martin Starr) is interviewed after the events in Washington, D.C. and says, "I would hate to lose a student on a school trip.  Not again."  I think I was the only person in the theater who laughed at that.  I once left a student at Kingsbury Hall...

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