It’d be hard to address Spider-Man: Far From Home in that recognizably pretentious film critic dialect. In fact, it’d be inauthentic and it’d be heartless. Marvel’s second summer Spider-Man is far from that. Far From Home is, to be short, really really cute. Like, that goofy cuteness you get from those kinda bad (usually 80s) pop songs that are always on weird radio stations that I don’t think anyone deliberately listens to.
I mean, we’ve been getting 17-year-olds weirdly represented since basically the birth of film (which is also the 80s, by the way). But finally, and I hate to say it, we get what feels like an indie rom-com for teens. From Disney, no less. Needless to say, it does have its stumbles, but it’s really only when it falls into Marvel’s macho superhero narrative. Other than some balance issues, the movie’s main difficulty comes when it sacrifices its characters for the sake of its plot. It might be my undying love for coming-of-age flicks talking, but I’d love for Peter’s monumental task of growing up to be played for something other than an awkward laugh or a sweet stolen glance (or a way to reference Iron Man). Please Marvel, in the wise words of Billy Eichner, “for a dollar”.
Anyway, hormones aside, Far From Home provides an easy, breezy, beautiful epilogue to the Endgame-led infinity saga. It’s difficult to not find every character extremely likable, especially given the easily lovable cast. But the star trio of Twitter royalty aren’t all that give the film it’s inherent niceness. Jon Watts returns to direct, and he brings a dynamic viewpoint that oddly compliments the awkward rigidity of his characters. Basically, he doesn’t go overboard with the Russo Quick Cuts™ in each and every one of the fight scenes. And, understandably, it’s hard to deliver something that fun, especially post-Endgame, and especially again with Spider-Man, who’s historically so flexible in his characterization. But its nice to see the cast and crew try take their characters to another level of teendom – that universal cringe of being so uncomfortably young.
As much as I’d like to talk about Far From Home being an instant late childhood classic, it’s still a superhero movie. The actual film is probably dominated a bit too much by that fact. Like, if you get the best actor of our generation (no I don’t take criticism), Jake Gyllenhaal, I’d like to see his character a bit more 3 dimensional. His backstory was told through what seemed like a bad spy movie montage, and I appreciate that, but I do need the writers to know – you’re on thin ice. Although, Quentin Beck (AKA Mysterio) still allowed for some of the best VFX sequences in MCU history. Seriously.
In all honesty, Spider-Man: Far From Home doesn’t reach the height that Homecoming did, but it definitely is packed full of love. At its best, it shows why Spider-Man is every kid’s favorite, and at its worst, it’s a fun and light watch. It’s literally like a live action comic. The pacing was solid and the visuals were amazing. Genuinely, it’s great. But please. Call it what it is: a rom-com.
Spider-Man: Far From Home is now in theaters worldwide