I feel like we could almost all agree that historically Spider-Man films have been a bit of a dud. This version of Peter Parker (Tom Holland) makes his debut in Captain America: Civil War, and though Civil War is flashy with a lot of A-list superheroes trying to make their 15 minutes count, Holland still stands out. For this reason, I was more excited than usual to see a Spider-Man film.
Spider-Man: Homecoming is not an origin story. Peter has already been bitten by the spider and has come to terms with his superhero persona. The film begins right after the events of the first Avengers film, then fast-forwards to present day, continuing Peter’s journey from Civil War. The opening scenes are crappy iPhone footage Peter has sneakily taken before, during and after the battle (because he’s 15 and it’s 2017). What teenager wouldn’t capture this kind of action on their phone?
One of the main reasons I enjoyed Spider-Man: Homecoming is Holland’s authenticity as Peter. He’s young, he’s naive and he’s got no idea what he’s got himself into. He’s eager to play the hero yet doesn’t quite think through the real-world implications. He’s every young teenage boy or girl who ever wanted to be a superhero. I think, in that way, it will appeal to the younger Marvel audience. In that respect, I think Marvel nails it with its ability to create films for a wide range of audiences. Kids will love this film because Peter represents something that’s attainable in their imaginations, while adults will still get a kick out of it because it slots right into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, along with The Avengers and whatever else follows.
It’s bright, it’s funny and it’s entertaining. It’s not the best Marvel film, by any means, but it succeeds in what it sets out to achieve. Ultimately, this is the link to get Spidey to where he needs to be in the MCU, and I look forward to seeing his character evolve.