*This review contains MAJOR spoilers for Avengers: Endgame*
Whilst the absence of Spider-Man (Tom Holland) from Avengers: Endgame was a major influence on the hero’s motivations and choices, his lack of screen-time left avid fans of the web-slinger yearning for the follow up to Homecoming. To their joy, Jon Watts provides another stellar addition to the Spider-Man franchise and brings about a satisfying conclusion to Phase 3 of the MCU.
Far From Home kicks off where Endgame left us with the world adjusting to life post blip and coming to terms with the loss of many of their heroes; Iron Man’s death and it’s repercussions play a particularly significant role in the film with his presence still looming over our protagonist. However the still existing dynamic between Parker and Stark ties in perfectly with Peter’s arc in the movie, his internal conflict regarding his responsibilities as Spider-Man intertwining with the world’s need for someone to take up Iron Man’s former mantle.
Despite the cataclysmal events of Endgame, Far From Home does a tremendous job of maintaining the down to earth tone of its predecessor. The charmingly awkward Peter Parker from Homecoming is largely reprised here, but it is his journey as the webbed hero that places this film ahead of his predecessor. The emotional conflict he has to deal with in regard to his responsibility as Spider-Man is continuingly enthralling but it’s his exploits when donning the mask which really are excellent. The visual effects deployed are, at many points, stunning and the action sequences crafted by Watts are gripping and really put an emphasis on utilizing Spider-Man’s individual powers whilst enhancing his credibility in a universe stacked with all-powerful superheroes.
The supporting cast brings much to the film and playoff Parker perfectly. Ned (Jacob Batalon), Mr Harrington (Parker’s teacher, portrayed by Martin Starr) and especially Nick Fury (Samuel. L. Jackson) provide the comedic relief which never feels forced, with Jackson being able to come into his own in the film more than in any other Marvel entry. MJ (Zendaya) provides an ideal love interest with her quirkiness making Peter’s pursuit of her much more believable than previous iterations.
Mysterio, portrayed by Jake Gyllenhaal, provides a fascinating addition to the franchise, bringing to life a notable character from the comics. His introduction poses various questions, largely surrounding his place in the wider universe. These concepts could have been handled a little more subtly as the exposition of the plot was at times too overt, especially when explaining Mysterio’s character. Nevertheless, Gyllenhaal’s performance is enthralling and adds a new dimension to the franchise, perhaps epitomising the sequel as a whole as it has all the qualities that made the first film great.
Image Credit: Movie DB