Film: Spider-Man: Far From Home; Director: Jon Watts; Cast: Tom Holland, Samuel L. Jackson, Zendaya, Cobie Smulders, Jon Favreau, JB Smoove, Jacob Batalon, Martin Starr, Marisa Tomei, Jake Gyllenhaal, Angourie Rice; Rating: 3.5/5 stars
"Spider-Man: Far From Home" is the 23rd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and it truly feels different. This one is an action packed, road-trip cum coming-of-age film.
Picking up weeks after the climactic events of "Avengers: Endgame", where the world is grieving the loss of Iron Man, Tony Stark. The film follows Peter Parker (Tom Holland) who is trying to balance his time between a summer vacation with his schoolmates in Europe where he plans to confess his inner-most feelings to his crush, MJ (Zenfaya) and help save the world from a great threat along with the new and unknown figure who the Italian media dubs as "Mysterio" (Jake Gyllenhaal).
How Peter tries to live a "normal life" and balance his Superhero duties, forms the crux of the narrative.
The highlight of the film is seeing Spider-Man out of his comfort zone, New York. Physically placing him in Europe and putting his sense of security in doubt is a very refreshing and welcome dynamic. The same can be said of the emotional aspect of the film too. The writers, Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, do a fantastic job of putting the protagonist constantly between the rock and the wall. First, wanting to tell the love of his life, MJ, of what he feels for her and see those plans repeatedly interrupted. And second, doubting his place in a post-Endgame world and if he really wants or deserves to occupy the space left by his mentor, Tony Stark. So, overall, "Spider-Man: Far From Home" does feel like a teenage romance film meshed perfectly within the story of a Spider-Man Film.
Tom Holland once again after "Infinity War" and "Endgame", delivers an emotionally charged performance as Spider-Man. He brings an adorable innocence to the role of Spider-Man and the chemistry between the cast members is absolutely delightful. In addition to him, the other highlight of the film is the character of Quentin Beck, aka Mysterio. This character is played by Jake Gyllenhaal and is one of the most interesting and theatrical ones we have ever had in the MCU. From his outfit to his comic and dramatic range to his charismatic energy, Mysterio steals every minute that he appears on the screen.
The action sequences are directed with flair and even better visual sharpness by returning director Jon Watts. But at times these sequences are stretched to a point of being a pain. There are some vivid nightmarish hallucinations that are glorious and disorientating.
The two post credit scenes are interesting and seem to open up the world more than it already has been throughout the years. In terms of connectivity, there are some jaw-dropping moments throughout these two scenes. In fact, the first post-credit scene is definitely a game-changer in the world of Spider-Man and has a fantastic character debut that will make fans cheer.
Overall, this film enthrals its audience.