Ilya Malakeev’s review published on Letterboxd:
To be quite honest I wasn’t really sure about the competence of this movie back in the day, when the first trailer dropped, but I already then saw some mild potential lurking under its sleeves just begging to be released and when it finally did, I was speechless..
I didn’t expect this much of a visually innovative experimenting nor the structual perfection that it maintained extremely well from the very beginning till the very end. This movie was an exceptional animated piece to witness in action.. Not only that it changed the game for the animated movies, it also changed the game for superhero movies in general with its incredibly imaginative storytelling and the use of marvellous comic-book-like animation style.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is THE movie to witness on a big screen. Not only that it sets the unforeseen and completely fresh artistical aspects to the screen, but it also understands how to create and develop its characters properly, while not getting lost in the process. This story was ultimately a story about Miles Morales and his struggles of becoming the web-slinging master and although this movie covers so many different characters and artistical ideas in entirety, it still always manages to come back to the main event of the night, which was Miles Morales’ journey and growth as a person.
What I found really fascinating, was the fact that this movie juggles with a lot of characters - A LOT of them - and it still somehow found a way to keep it all under a tight control so effortlessly. It also knew how to tie in some new characters to the story without affecting negatively to the pacing nor the flow of the movie. Whenever it felt like the movie started to lose its grip of that incredible flow (although I felt it only once), it immediately started to tighten the pace and the intensity up to ”get back” on that line of excellence, while counterbalancing that with performing some really funny scenes to lighten the mood up every now and then.
This movie was also filled with a various references and nods to the earlier Spider-Man installments, which I loved very much. Some of them were a nostalgic little nods to the little details from the past movies and some of them literally made fun of their own property like *cough* *cough* Spider-Man 3... I liked how it didn’t took itself too seriously all the time, while still telling its story serious enough to make the movie really work on the screen flawlessly and effectively.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a groundbreaking piece of animation, which merges the breathtaking visuals to the incredibly entertaining and competent storyline, which not only makes you feel something during its runtime, but also keeps surprising constantly with the variety of its excellent storytelling and its extremely wide visual capabilities. This movie should win the best animation movie of the year category or it’ll be the biggest robbery of the year without a doubt! Extraordinary movie and best Spider-Man movie there is in my opinion!