Spider-Man: Far from Home ★★★★½

Buckle up, folks. This is going to be a long one.

Just when I thought Marvel might've been going a step too far in extending its Infinity Saga post-Endgame, Jon Watts delivers one of the best films in the MCU to date. Spider-Man: Far from Home is everything I could've asked for, as an enormous Spidey fan and as a fan of good movies. This is probably the most fun I've had at the movies all year, and it's probably the best live-action Spider-Man movie we've had yet.

Tom Holland is once again fantastic as the titular hero (Spider-Man is my favorite superhero, so this is coming from a true fan of the character), and he further proves himself to be the best version of the webhead we have had yet. Zendaya is also surprisingly great here, and her chemistry with Holland is excellent, and they make for an adorable pair. But the real star here is Jake Gyllenhaal as Mysterio, who has instantly become of my favorite characters in the MCU to date. He chews up every moment of screentime he has and makes for one of the most enjoyable and compelling characters the MCU has had to offer so far.

The action sequences are also incredibly fun, and very impressive, especially compared to the small-scale action sequences in Homecoming. Watts really steps it up here, and the IMAX format actually enhanced the action sequences a lot, and I would recommend seeing this film in IMAX if you get the chance. This film also has one of the coolest climaxes - and really third acts in general - in the entire MCU, and big fans of Mysterio like myself will be very happy with what they do with his abilities in these scenes.

As for the story, it's very compelling and very personal, which is exactly what I want in a Spider-Man film, especially in this universe. Peter Parker is still the same relatable, charming character that he has always been, and I cared for him more here than I probably ever had yet, and this is coming from someone who has loved Holland's portrayal of the character since he was first introduced in Captain America: Civil War. The film still retains the fun John Hughes vibe from the last film, and that's what really makes this interpretation of this character so special. Peter's interactions with Quentin Beck make for some of my favorite scenes in the film as well. Holland and Gyllenhaal also have very strong chemistry in their one-on-one scenes. The ways they set up this universe post-Endgame are really clever, and I honestly can't wait to see where they go with these characters and this world going forward.

As for flaws, there are a couple. The first 20-30 minutes or so are a bit rocky. Not bad by any means. But I was a little nervous at first that the film wouldn't have the emotional stakes that it needed to have, so I was a little concerned. But once it kicks into high gear, it's fantastic and all those doubts faded away. I would also say that some of the attempts at humor did fall flat, but even then that's really reaching for flaws.

Spider-Man: Far from Home is everything you could ask for from a summer blockbuster, and really everything you could ask for in a movie in general. It's insanely fun, fast-paced, and has a compelling story with characters you genuinely love and care for, and I absolutely can't wait to see where the MCU goes from here. I was a little skeptical about the MCU past phase three at first, but I think we're in good hands going forward.
GRADE: A-

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