*This is one of eight films that I saw during a summer traveling around Europe. I did not write full reviews for these movies, but I have shared mini-reviews that were originally posted on social media to Sitting In The Cinema*
I searched for Wi-Fi in the Scottish highlands to share the following thoughts on the excellent Spider-Man: Homecoming.
As the cinephile version of a kid who grew up scavenging old newspapers to find the original Spidey comics attached- and as a person who once went to high school- Homecoming is nearly immaculate. It captures the spirit of Spider-Man as well as the first two Raimi films, with memorable set pieces to boot. But it's the first Spider-Man film to sling Peter Parker directly from comics to screen.
Peter Parker and his surroundings are perfect. This is the alternately insecure and overconfident, quippy, idealistic Peter of the comics, with all his try-hard theatrics. Tom Holland solidifies his rightful place as the best in the role: especial kudos to his exceedingly joyful take on how a kid would deal with brand new superpowers and adventures.
If John Hughes' movies accurately portrayed high school dynamics of their time, Homecoming is the rare mainstream modern movie to pull off a similar feat. So many recent 'high school movies' feel written and production designed by people who have forgotten high school. Homecoming is true to life for recent generations; a veritable time machine.
The villain is a contender for the MCU's best. The strongest superhero screenplays feature a villain who has a point: Vulture is not hard to sympathize with. The small scale helps establish this connection, but the thanks go largely to Michael Keaton's refusal to perform in broad strokes, and to the screenplay's deft political touches that humanize someone who's essentially a Trump fanatic with super tech.
The screenplay also nails the comedy side far more effectively than the Guardians of the Galaxy movies claim to. One-liners and visual moments alike are filled in by 'little things' of comedic value: they feel naturally integrated and are funnier for it. I smiled and laughed consistently throughout.
I'd take a star off my rating for naggingly choppy editing (even outside the action sequences) and overuse of Stark-deus ex machina, but add half a star back on for a magnificent casting job. The racial diversity and recognition of rising talents (particularly comedians) on display is impressive.
All in all, Spider-Man: Homecoming is one of the top 3 movies in the MCU, the second best Spider-Man movie overall, and the best superhero movie of 2017 so far- yes, better than Wonder Woman and even Logan.
(staying after the credits is worthwhile!)