Spider-Man: Far from Home

Spider-Man: Far from Home ★★½

When Avengers: Endgame brought to a conclusion the MCU's 22 film juggernaut, questions were asked about where some of the characters went next. Tom Holland's stint as Spider-Man was in it's infancy, and although he'd acquitted himself fairly well among the superhero big-hitters, I wasn't truly convinced that he could carry a film on his own. That was obvious with Spider-Man: Homecoming, where arguably Holland was upstaged by Michael Keaton's villain and the presence of Tony Stark and Happy. Marisa Tomei's Aunt May was also a welcome surprise, but for me the jury was still out on Holland. Spider-Man: Far From Home cemented those fears, and yet again it was others who carried the film towards those magical $1 billion dollar numbers.

Peter Parker wants a break. He's saw his mentor die, he's experienced death, despair, and destruction on a world-wide scale, so a European school field trip was just what Peter needed to get his head together and hopefully try to fulfil some of his goals on the MJ front. Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. however have a different agenda for young Peter, who seems to be the one superhero they can contact who isn't off-world. Fury has become involved with another apparent super-powered individual from another planet, Mysterio, after destruction caused by unnatural storms draws their attention. Mysterio however looks for help, cue Parker's Spider-Man being drawn into the fray. Anyone familiar with the comics however will know what's coming, as the battle for some of Tony Stark's tech becomes the ultimate prize.

There's as much smoke and mirrors in the plot as there is in Mysterio's box of tricks, and although I really wanted to love this I came away ultimately disappointed. Seeing Happy, Fury, and even Cobie Smulders' Maria Hill again did bring a smile to my face, but Holland still doesn't convince me as the web-slinger despite those huge box office numbers. Upstaged again by Jake Gyllenhaal, a perfect role for the grown-up Donnie Darko, Holland is a forgettable Peter Parker. Maybe it's simply the character I don't like, who knows, I hated Tobey Maguire as Parker, but liked Andrew Garfield, or maybe it's because we don't have either Kirsten Dunst or Emma Stone as a love interest? I know this may be a futile gripe too, but the overuse of CGI here did begin to get on my tits, despite some incredibly imaginative stuff from the special effects department. It's not a dud, and maybe it's simply a hangover from Endgame, but I wanted and expected more from this.

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