Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
USA, 2019. Columbia Pictures, Pascal Pictures, Marvel Studios. Screenplay by Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers, based on the Marvel comic book by Stan Lee, Steve Ditko. Cinematography by Matthew J. Lloyd. Produced by Kevin Feige, Amy Pascal. Music by Michael Giacchino. Production Design by Claude Pare. Costume Design by Anna B. Sheppard. Film Editing by Leigh Folsom Boyd, Dan Lebental.
Hardly any time has passed since the end of the excellent Homecoming, and Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is still finding it difficult to balance his scholastic duties with his nightly activities as your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man. It helps that he is no longer waiting day and night for Tony Stark to call, and looping his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) into his secret second life means fewer lies and the complications they bring, but when he joins his schoolmates on a summer trip to Europe, his plan is to leave all superheroing behind and just be a regular kid. It’s a nice goal, especially because he plans to finally tell MJ (Zendaya) how he feels about her, but trouble comes in the form of giant “elemental” creatures that cause havoc and destruction almost from the moment he and his group arrive in Venice. Combatting these titans is a new superhero “Mysterio” (Jake Gyllenhaal) with whom Spider-Man teams up to save people, then realizes that this might be his new role model from whom he is meant to learn a great deal. What he is actually learning, though, is that he has as much to learn about trusting his instincts as he does about saving lives. The fun continues around the continent as elementals ruin Prague, Berlin and London, wearing our young protagonist down and causing him doubts about his ability to serve humanity when he is so vulnerable in the face of such overwhelming danger. The tension was more exciting in the last one and the surprises a bit more shocking, but this is still a full-course meal of a good time, aided by great effects and a cheerfully appealing supporting cast that fills out Peter Parker’s world and makes his non-action scenes as fun as seeing him swing through those streets. A very compelling cliffhanger ending will leave you breathless for the next chapter.