Spider-man: Homecoming Movie Review

Updated: Jul 18, 2017, 09:58 IST | Mayank Shekhar

To cut a long story short: With great power come great possibilities. From the audience's perspective, 'Spider-man: Homecoming' feels more like going back to old school

Spiderman Homecoming. Pic/Twitter
Spider-man Homecoming. Pic/Twitter

'Spider-man: Homecoming'
U/A; Action/Adventure

Director: Jon Watts
Actors: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr
Rating: 

This is the third Spider-man reboot in 15 years. Of course that signifies how severely short is the span of a generation now. Also, at a time when Hollywood studios have pretty much saturated the super-hero universe-bunging several into one (we last saw the new Spider-man in 'Captain America: Civil War' that starred every Avengers' star and their mom), or even pitting one super-hero against the other (like Superman vs Batman)-does it even matter if Tom Holland, instead of Tobey Maguire or Andrew Garfield, plays the latest Spidey? Ideally, not anymore than it matters who's the chef at your local McDonald's. It's a franchise-comfort food, like comfort film. You'll step in and check it out anyway.

But the whole point of a reboot (besides the inherent commerce behind it, or poverty of big-ticket ideas in general) is to see your beloved character anew. And in that sense, Holland as the supposedly 15-year-old Peter Parker, seems like an attempt to take Spidey to where he naturally belongs: among kids, and in his friendly neighbourhood, rather than straightaway saving the planet.

The li'l boy Parker, from Queens, New York, may no more be a reporter with the Daily Bugle, but as an intern with Iron Man's Stark Corporation he's deeply, inherently endearing-a nerdy inter-school quizzard, and a bit of a love-struck Romeo in a class full of bright, multi cultural/racial kids who seem to be very gently, subtly cocking a snook at the all-white, anti-immigrant American audience that the current US Prez Trump stands for.

The 'Aunt May' is a supremely sassy Marisa Tomei. The arch-enemy Vulture (Michael Keaton doing a super-hero flick almost right after a nod/parody of superhero flicks in Birdman), isn't exactly a hugely formidable, bloodsucking villain. And Parker's boss, Tony Stark or Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr) is really there to calm him down as he delivers instructions, oddly enough on one occasion, from a desi wedding.

"If you're nothing without the (Spider-man) costume, then you don't deserve the costume at all," Stark tells Parker at one point when the boy is learning the ropes, or the web, as it were. This isn't to suggest that Spidey has turned into Superman-that rare one from the pantheon who was already born with all the powers we know him for, and who actually doesn't need the cape to see him through. Spidey does. His costume talks to him like Siri. And while he'd be nothing without the mask, the filmmakers are more interested in helping him develop a personality before he eventually deals with the sharks.

In all this relatively understated high-school stuff, beautifully laden with heartbreak and humour, this is still for every intent and purpose, a full-on, big-theatre, 3D/IMAX super-hero spectacle. If anything, you might notice, the 3D view is more aimed at the depth of field on screen rather than rocks being thrown at your eyes. And so far as highlight moments go, man, the one set with Spider-man on top of the Washington Memorial will beat any other you've ever seen.

So yeah, to cut a long story short: With great power come great possibilities. From the audience's perspective, this feels more like going back to old school. Which is genuinely heartening to know. That is, before the blast-fest begins, I'm sure!

Watch the trailer of 'Spider-Man: Homecoming'

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