Spider-Man: Far from Home

Spider-Man: Far from Home ★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

Well this second installment of the Tom Holland-portrayed Spider-Man films is pretty great stuff and a definite step up from the previous film, although that one wasn't bad at all, just one I had s few gripes about. Now that I've accepted the fact that he's still in high school here, and that they've shown MJ to be a bit of a paranoid conspiracy theorist (which is fun), I'm glad that I'm more accepting of the characters' behavior this go-round. We still have Spider-Man getting chewed-out a bit but he is shown to be right about the mistakes he supposedly makes and there's a twist to the authority figure who's doing the chewing so I'm calling it even here. Anyway...

Here, Peter Parker (Holland) is getting ready to go abroad as his high school class is having a trip to Europe. This is after the passing of Tony Stark (spoiler for anyone who hadn't heard in the two years since that blockbuster was released and has shown everywhere and the sequels have made no secret of the fact) and how it affects Peter because Tony/Iron Man was his mentor and friend. Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau), Stark's right-hand man, is on hand to give Peter something Tony wanted him to have: a pair of shades with the codename E.D.I.T.H., which is the name of the AI incorporated into the glasses and puts new power at Peter's disposal. But, when they reach Europe, while on the tour bus, in a hilarious scene, Peter accidentally launches a killer drone from orbit to come after a potential rival for Peter's affections toward MJ. Only by distraction and quick-thinking is he able to destroy the drone without anybody noticing.

Then, when they get to Venice (while Peter is ignoring Nick Fury's phone calls), an elemental being made of water attacks the city and smashes buildings and puts Peter's friends in danger. Suddenly, a new, caped character appears and shoots green power bolts at the creature, seemingly harming it. Peter, with an identity-hiding court jester-type hat on, assists the new guy in defeating the creature. When it's destroyed, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) arrive and this is when Fury chews out Parker for his previous screwup with the drone and for ignoring his calls. Well, in this movie, Peter looks hurt, but he still does what he thinks is right, despite Fury's griping. The new guy is Quentin Beck, whom Peter has dubbed Mysterio, and is played winningly by Jake Gyllenhaal. Beck and Peter make fast friends and Beck informs everyone that he's from an alternate universe, confirming the existence of multiverses to Peter. In Back's universe, these "elementals" were defeated but killed Beck's family as the last, fiery elemental destroyed his world. Fury and Peter welcome him to their Earth. But sometimes things can seem too good to be true.

I'm just gonna say it---Mysterio/Beck is a fraud and tricks Peter into giving up his AI tech, aka E.D.i.T.H. Msyterio wants to reconfigure that tech into creating a larger-scale "monster" with drones cloaked beneath it to attack London which just happens to be where Peter's friends are going next.

Although Beck/Mysterio is a solid bad guy, he is played quite a bit comically by Gyllenhaal, who is out to get rich and be hailed a hero. He has a whole crew of former Stark techs working for him and when one drops the ball on his job, Gyllenhaal comically throws a hissy fit, unlike most bad guys.

Peter's regular squad is back and do fine: Zendaya as MJ is much more appealing this time around as she begins to lower her guard and show some vulnerability; Jacob Batalon is fun again as Ned Leeds, Peter's best friend, who screws things up a few times again for Peter but not as much this time as he's greatly distracted by his new lady friend, none other than the previous movie's Betty Brant (a solid Angourie Rice); Marisa Tomei returns as a smoking fine Aunt May, who is now having a romance with none other than Happy, which causes Peter some concern; Happily, something I hoped for in the last movie happens here at the end: the return of J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jameson, who causes Peter/Spider-Man some grief at the end, which is natural for Jameson. We even get a callback to Aunt May's exclamation at the end of the first film, which Peter repeats quite comically.

Then there's a stinger scene at the very end but I don't know exactly how that ties into anything in further Marvel movies, as this is the only one I think I've seen since Avengers: End Game.

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