To say that the twenty-third installment in the long-running Marvel Cinematic Universe Spider-Man: Far From Home had some pretty big shoes to fill after the masterpiece that was Avengers: Endgame would be a massive understatement. Many fans all around the world were worried that Far From Home would be too similar to 2017’s Homecoming in that it would feel too small in scale and inconsequential to the overarching story that is the MCU.
While a large portion of the movies in this franchise do feel absolutely necessary, there are a few times in which an entry feels kind of unnecessary except for a few scenes that tease things to come in future installments down the road. Although I definitely enjoyed Homecoming, it did feel ultimately forgettable in the long run and didn’t feel like it had a big role to play. Far From Home is the exact opposite.
Ever since his impressive debut in the 2016 smash hit Captain America: Civil War, Tom Holland has won the hearts of many around the world as Peter Parker / Spider-Man and it is not hard to see why. He has all the wit and charm that the beloved character is known for in the comics, plus he is extremely sympathetic. One of the most essential elements to the character is that he is always getting beaten down in life. Not a lot of things go right for him, but when things start to improve, we as an audience feel joyed ourselves. In Far From Home, Holland delivers an incredible performance and has a much more emotionally driven role than you may have thought. He is still dealing with the devastating events caused by Thanos and it is evident throughout the film that the mad titan’s actions have caused hardships that will take a long time to be erased on Earth and this is the case even for the superheroes.
The humor here is also terrific, and is one of the funniest MCU pictures in years. I love witty humor and comedy that makes you think, and a lot of the jokes here are exactly like that. There were dozens of scenes that left me laughing consistently and with a big smile on my face.
Speaking of smiles, this latest adventure is a whole whack of fun. In terms of an action standpoint, this is by far the most exciting Spider-Man film we have ever seen to date. Some of the action set pieces here are absolutely mesmerizing and Marvel continues to reinvent the superhero genre with each passing movie.
Much like Homecoming, there are also plenty of twists and turns the plot takes that are genuinely surprising and it is hard to see them coming. You would think that by watching so many movies we would know what these twists are, but director Jon Watts is able to brilliantly pull the carpet from under your feet and does so effortlessly.
Michael Giacchino, who previously composed the score for the aforementioned Homecoming, provides an amazing score this time around as well. During a few sequences towards the final few moments of the picture, his score makes the scenes extremely emotional and gripping.
Far From Home does feel remarkably long however, clocking in at a lengthy one hundred and twenty nine minutes. The running time could have been cut down by about twenty minutes or so and the film would have flowed a bit better.
Additionally, for the most part the editing by Dan Lebental and Leigh Folsom-Boyd is exceptional, but there are two scenes in the first act that did feel incredibly jarring and felt completely out of place.
But those looking for an absolutely exhilarating and tension-filled extravaganza with lots of real human emotion, breathtaking action scenes, a good Spider-Man film, or just a good film, are in luck. Far From Home is easily the second best film the character has had to date.
Overall Grade: A
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence, some language and brief suggestive comments
Cast: Tom Holland, Samuel L. Jackson, Zendaya, Cobie Smulders, Jon Favreau, J. B. Smoove, Jacob Batalon, Martin Starr, Marisa Tomei, Jake Gyllenhaal
Directed by: Jon Watts
Distributed by: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Running Time: 129 minutes