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Review – Spider-Man: Far From Home – “A missed opportunity”

Spider-Man: Far From Home has an opening that’s every bit as jarring and befuddled as Captain Marvel.

I’m a Russo Fanboy (Seriously, their four top Nolan’s three). I was nervous – and apprehensive. I raised a smile here and there, but it all just felt a bit… misplaced. And worse. Parody-like. And that’s coming from the biggest Whitney fan you know.

Glimpses of humour aside (loved “The Blip”!), I found it didn’t really hit its stride until Venice. And that’s twenty-odd minutes in. I’ve got a four-year-old and when we go this week, I’d genuinely consider skipping the first 20 mins. He won’t get anything from it.

The humour keeps it going at least. For a film built on a post-Iron Man world, I would’ve thought it would be based on heart – but no, there’s little there. An accidental drone attack on a bus is outright terrible. For many, many reasons. I was getting over the CGI on the nanotech suit when they outdid themselves with a bus jump. By comparison, the oft-maligned CGI “wings” look pretty cool.

Tony Stark’s personality and aura hover all over the film. But there’s literally no tugging at the heartstrings. And I was there for the taking. I cry at Armageddon. Every. Time.

It’s not the end of the world – and I guess something had to follow Avengers: Endgame, I just thought it would be something that tries to play up such a momentous end – and I guess it eventually tries, but by then, it’s a missed opportunity for me.

It’s a missed opportunity for the Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal) father figure I’d been promised too.

Don’t get me wrong, Gyllenhaal is sensational. Towards the end, some of his line delivery had me in stitches. It’s brilliant – and he’s clearly having the time of his life. A scene in a bar is fantastic. I thought he was going to break the fourth wall and wink his way to the bank.

But I didn’t buy his relationship with Parker – and I thought that was the one banker when I went in. They just don’t spend enough time on it. And they don’t really invest in MJ enough, either. Holland’s done what… four films now? I’m only just getting the thought there’s a spark between him and Zendaya. And love it or hate it, you’d have to say the chemistry in the Amazing Spider-Man series is fabulous.

It’s not all doom and gloom. One five minute sequence is straight out of Into The Spiderverse, and it’s flat out superb. Genuinely brilliant.

They return to it later, too. They know they’re on to a winner. And why not? It adds genuine creativity into the action scenes – because as globe-trotting as this film is, the action may as well be set anywhere. The Venice scenes are great, but when it comes to the crunch, it may as well be anywhere. I would’ve had that whole scene actually involve… you know… water.

Tom Holland’s fantastic, too. I’m really starting to like him in the role. As a Garfield fanboy, that’s a huge relief. And he plays the comedy – especially with Favreau (what a month he’s about to have, by the way), superbly.

So it’s another Summer film down. I think as I reflect I’ll enjoy it more.

I can’t lie. I went in hoping they had the balls to do a Maguire/Garfield scene with the multiverse. Then, hoping they’d be even bolder, I hoped they’d throw in a cartoon Miles Morales. Alas no. But some of the choices, especially the mid-credits scene (both for a change), suggest things will get weirder before they level out.

I’m OK with that. So long as they get me Keaton back. We’ve missed him.

Spider-Man: Far From Home is in cinemas now.

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