Spider-Man: Homecoming

Action,Adventure,Sci-Fi

A welcome narrowing of the Marvel mega-verse, away from alien invasions Discuss this article

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© ITP Images

“Couldn’t you just be a friendly, neighbourhood Spider-Man?” asks Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) of his 15-year-old webslinging protegé Peter Parker (Tom Holland), fearing that the high schooler is going to end up in more trouble than he can handle. And, indeed, Spider-Man: Homecoming offers a welcome narrowing of the Marvel mega-verse, away from alien invasions and globe-smashing supervillains and back towards something more local and intimate.

The film’s villain, flight suit-wearing arms manufacturer The Vulture (Michael Keaton), doesn’t even want to rule the world: he’s just chasing a quick buck so that he can feed his family. The problem is that he’s willing to sacrifice innocent lives to achieve it – starting with Peter’s.

Homecoming isn’t strictly an origin story: there’s no radioactive spider bite, no wow-I-can-lift-a-car-now moment. This is about a young man figuring out what to do with the power he’s already acquired, while also navigating the pitfalls of everyday teenagerhood. It’s light and breezy – and perhaps a little throwaway, at times. It’s also dizzingly entertaining.

Holland brings just the right blend of goofy and gallant, and has a perfect foil in the form of Ned (Jacob Batalon), the traditional chubby sidekick with a touch more depth. And, despite what the trailers might suggest, Tony Stark’s regular cameos don’t unbalance the film.

It’s not perfect. Indie director Jon Watts (Cop Car) doesn’t have a lot of experience with large-scale action, and the climactic dust-up is blurry. But the blend of humour, pathos and wall-crawling is well judged. After a handful of misfires, Marvel have rediscovered their heart.

The bottom line
Holland’s new webslinger is heaps of fun.

By Tom Huddleston
Time Out Doha,

Spider-Man: Homecoming

  • Duration: 133
  • Released: Thu, 29 Jun
  • Classification: PG13
  • Language: English
  • Director: Jon Watts
  • Stars: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr.

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