It does the almost impossible task of bringing together everything we’ve seen and opens the door to everything else we might see in the future.
Director Jon Watts
Screenplay Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers
Starring Tom Holland, Zendaya, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jacob Batalon, Jon Favreau, Jamie Foxx, Willem Dafoe, Alfred Molina, Benedict Wong, Tony Revolori, Marisa Tomei
There can be no adequate way to describe how much emotion and intelligence went into creating this 3rd film of the Tom Holland / Jon Watts Spider-Man venture. There are so many moments of averted inevitability in McKenna and Sommers’ script, that by the time the middle act begins, one stops even trying to predict what happens next. This is the Spider-Man to end all Spider-Man films, and it feels like its just beginning.
If I am leaning heavy on superlatives its because there is not much of the plot I want to discuss. The basics are as follows: following the events of Far From Home, Spidey is revealed to all. As this leads to many issues affecting those that Peter (Holland) loves, he seeks to fix everything with the help of Dr. Strange (Cumberbatch). In keeping with his pattern, Peter messes things up with the best intentions. The result has inter-dimensional ramifications.
That’s all I can tell you. If you want to enjoy this film, make sure you don’t look too much more into the plot. It takes on a life different than many of the other superhero films outside of a handful of MCU features. The possibilities of the inclusion of nemeses from other timelines could have been a lame excuse to bring in a few big names. Instead they took a longer road, continued some stories that we thought were finished several times over the last two decades.
Many other filmmakers would rely on starpower alone to sell tickets to this event. The MCU wisely decides that who is in this movie has to be secondary to the stories they occupy within its overall tale. As a result, we have several masterful storylines tied around the best and bravest performance of Spider-Man to date for Holland. That’s saying something for the hero who was under the wing of Tony Stark.
Whatever one can say about this film, they cannot claim it is not well thought out. So many loose threads that all weave together in a tapestry of awesomeness. It’s hard to believe how flowery the language is, but like I say, words can’t do the No Way Home justice. The writers and director, working in conjunction with several iterations of this and other franchises, have made a smart film that hits all the right notes for every character and universe that crosses its path.
It’s easy to admire that Kevin Fiege, in the fourth film of Phase 4 of MCU, has found a way to make this series and those past all feel new again. It is definitely beyond my imagination. It does the almost impossible task of bringing together everything we’ve seen (even the Sony Spiderverse and Netflix Marvelverse) and opens the door to everything else we might see in the future.
On our way home, my daughter and I were discussing it all, right down to the amazing choice of The Magic Number by De La Soul to end the film. At some point she took over a sentence I was formulating and completed my very thoughts. Yes, we are nerds. And No Way Home is the juice that feeds through our nerdly nervous system.
Long live Spidey, wherever and whoever they may be.
(***** out of *****)