Spider-Man: Far From Home

Spider-Man: Far From Home ★★★

It can be quite a kick when it isn't recycling certain thematic material from other movies (and whenever it manages to leave Tony Stark's name, image, and/or tech out of things for like five minutes at a clip). Gyllenhaal is having a lot of fun, which always helps, even if some aspects of his character's whole deal are pretty obvious from the jump. The jokes aren't all winners, but they're plentiful and often funny enough to make this work on the high school rom-com level (though I'd like more focus on MJ APART from Peter/danger/etc). This movie still has a few too many moving pieces and a lot of faulty/cartoony logic, and showcases some pretty poor judgment from characters who should probably know better (even if there's eventual justification for that). That makes it creak in ways that the best MCU movies don't, but Holland is so winning as Peter that it still mostly keeps you on side. The effects and action scenes are also not as involving as in its better stablemates, and feel fairly light on legitimate peril, so they can drag (though I think they are somewhat intentionally restrictive, mirroring the way they impinge on Peter's freedom to live a normal life). But maybe, with this phase over and the franchise's long encomium for Tony Stark in the rear view, things will settle in for the next one (and/or whatever other MCU film the character appears in first).

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