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Spider-Man: Homecoming  : Spidey & A Schoolboy Adventure
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Friday, July 7, 2017
Adventure
Jon Watts
Zendaya, Tom Holland, Robert Downey Jr, Marisa Tomei, Jon Favreau, Gwyneth Paltrow

Exhilarated after his initiation into the super hero league, it’s not easy for Peter Parker to slip behind his desk and just be a schoolboy. Not when mentor Tony Spark alias Iron Man has gifted him a natty hi-tech suit.  Like the proverbial kid in a toyshop, he can’t wait to try it all out.

 

‘You’re still too young to be a full-fledged superhero, just be the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man,’ says his mentor to him. But schoolboys, even those with web-spinning powers, don’t heed adult advice.

 

So off goes our teen Spidey to fight the next-door baddie. Director Jon Watts makes this more a local crime story than one of those inter-galactic super fights.

 

Fortunately, a galaxy of screenplay writers keep this Spider-Man closer home in New York and don’t turn him into a watchman of the universe or the savior of the earth from alien disaster. That kind of makes the schoolboy’s super fights a little more real.

 

And although the new villain in town gets his superpowers and demonic wings from alien junk he has salvaged, he has a rather neat, grounded reason for turning bad.

 

Peter Parker has his schoolboy woes like having this massive crush on Liz. But superhero duty comes in the way all the time even if he muffs it up most of the time and Iron Man has to step in at the right time.

 

The one scene where he’s both schoolboy and superhero is a tense car ride with Liz and her father. Tom Holland as Spider-Man keeps it appealing while Michael Keaton as the villain puts the menace out there without special effects.

 

However, the background score is overloud in a few places, substituting noise for substantial activity. It’s a bit overlong too at 2 hrs and 14 minutes.

 

The cinematography and special effects are not spectacularly unique and there arethe expected disaster moments designed for super hero intervention. Like a ferry splitting into two and a lift full of school kids who have to be rescued.       

 

But there’s enough prom and high school stuff to keep the young glued to the new superhero. There’s also the sprinkling of punchlines to bring on the smiles.

 

Robert Downey Jr has maybe a total of 10 minutes of screen time but he’s so right as Parker’s daddy-like mentor. Gwyneth Paltrow makes her customary one-scene appearance by Tony Spark’s side. She’ll probably sport his ring the next time around.

 

Like all Marvel films, don’t go home till the credits have rolled completely. Michael Keaton has something to say which leaves room for more encounters with Peter Parker. And you’ll feel like punching Captain America at the end. You’ve to watch it to know why.  

 

For a watchable film where the teen hero is still settling into his costume, Spider-Man: Homecoming gets a 3* rating.

 

Reviewed by
Bharathi S Pradhan
Senior Journalist & Author

 

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