Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse (2018)

BOB PERSICHETTI, PETER RAMSEY, RODNEY ROTHMAN

Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.  USA, 2018.  , Columbia Pictures Corporation, Marvel Entertainment, Avi Arad Productions, Lord Miller, , .  Story by , Screenplay by Phil Lord, , story consultant , based on Spider-Verse created by and characters created by , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .  Produced by , Phil Lord, , , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 2018.  Golden Globe Awards 2018.

Miles Morales () is a high school kid whose cop father () and nurse mother () have high expectations, sending him to a private school to give him a better chance at a promising future.  Miles gravitates more to his free-spirited uncle Aaron (), who at the beginning of this wondrously animated film shows him an abandoned subway station where the young man can work on his graffiti art.  While doing so, Miles is bitten by a radioactive spider and is suddenly gifted with arachnid abilities, an odd thing to happen considering there already is a Spider-Man swinging through the streets of the city.  Even more confusing is that the evil Kingpin (voiced by ) has opened up a portal to other dimensions that has sucked a whole bunch of alternate Spider-people into Miles’ life, including a Spider-Gwen, an anime character, a film noir version of the superhero (voiced effectively by ), a Looney Tune version and the Peter Parker known on our present-day Earth.  Miles must team up with a far more cynical and flabby Spider-Man than the one he knew (voiced by an excellent ), and together they rush to put the universe back in order by closing the device that has caused this rift being worlds; the problem is that Miles has self-esteem issues and needs some help believing that he is capable of helping others when he has so much trouble figuring himself out.  The plotting is a bit more complicated than it needs to be, but the visual energy of this movie is incredible, vibrant and beautiful from beginning to end while very expertly riding a fine and dangerous line: the characters are fun and the film has more than its fair share of good-natured humour, but there’s a dark and dangerous edge to everything that gives the experience a menacing bite that lingers just beneath the surface.

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