This is a review for the 2D Standard Screening of Spider-Man: No Way Home and this DOES contain heavy spoilers throughout, although not everything is revealed. Click here if you wish to see the spoiler-free version.
This was such a fun movie. It’s definitely one for comic book movie history! Plenty of surprising twists and emotional moments. It’s also more comedic than expected. The reunion of multiple characters is the best thing since Endgame. However, these characters span across the multiverse and It’s unbelievable how Sony and Marvel made this happen.
Spider-Man: No Way Home is of course following directly on from the events of Far From Home; where Peter has already been exposed as Spider-Man, by Mysterio, and the continuity is brilliant!
The opening scenes give off a 70’s detective theme vibe in terms of music, and Peter and MJ are shocked and swinging through the city back to where they live. The pacing is done well and rapid as this conveys the anxiety that Peter is feeling and then being interrogated by officials.
It’s devasting how Peter’s life has been affected by this identity exposition, as this also has consequences on his friends and family. Especially, with getting rejected for MIT. This has led Peter to get from Doctor Strange and issues start happening as soon as the spell goes wrong to wipe everyone’s memory. Bringing in Green Goblin, Doc Ock, Electro and Sandman.
The movie finally gives Aunt May more character development, as she becomes a moral compass to Peter. However, the film jokingly glances over her failing relationship with Happy. This isn’t handled properly at all, as this is quickly forgotten about when getting back to Peter’s identity being revealed flips their lives upside-down.
MJ’s backstory was still lacking so much. It would have been great to finally see Peter meet her family in this, even if for a very brief scene, or at least more about her. However, this MJ does have more of a personality in this movie and is very supportive towards Peter. The chemistry between them both is so much better.
The pacing can feel very quick for some characters such as the brief surprise appearance of Matt Murdock being included for literally about 1 – 2 minutes to clear Peter’s name. His appearance was still impressive and it’s still not clear if this will be canon to his Netflix appearance or a soft reboot.
Doc Ock’s appearance was funnier than expected and it was tremendous to see Alfred Molina jump back into the role. It was like he never left it after being away for 17 years! The brigde scene that was really overplayed in Sony’s marketing was surprisingly shorter but remarkable. It’s a relief that his redemption arc was not damaged by this movie.
Electro looked incredible in this movie and somehow Sandman appeared right in the same place where Max was. Electro’s new appearance isn’t really explained all that well… it is mentioned that the energy is different on Tom’s Earth, however that’s about it. Although,The extra updgrade to Electro, which fits perfectly. Sandman still has his redemption arc and the writers have not messed up his characters.
Green Goblin is more terrifying than ever before. Willem Dafoe’s performance is such a darker, refreshing take on Norman Osborn and it’s impressive to see his split personality deal with a strange new world and absolutely cause devastating chaos.
They didn’t include the villains entering from their worlds or showing Doctor Strange capturing Lizard (it was only explained). This could have been much longer movie than the 2 hours 28 minutes runtime, as it felt like the film was so quick.
Peter essentially wants to help the villains as Norman does such a great job with manipulating Peter into helping them and this goes badly wrong for him.
Doctor Strange’s chase scene with Peter was mind blowing. There was so many moving cities in the mirror dimension and there was a moment when thinking.. how will Spider-Man even figure out how to get out of this?!
The emotional build up to Aunt May’s death is really abrupt, shocking and the line “with great power, comes great responsibility” is finally said. The line didn’t really feel like it made much of an impact compared to when Uncle Ben said it in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man (2002). However, the death scene itself impacts the rest of the movie and Peter’s (Tom Holland’s) actions.
It was amazing to see how characters interacted with each-other. It’s what most fans would have dreamed of and maybe never expected to ever happen.
The spell didn’t just bring in villains, the introduction of Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield were both phenomenal and hilarious. Shocked that Marvel and Sony actually pulled this off for including them and for a big chunk of the movie too, right until the end! Their involvement was major to the plot. They were co-leads right from the moment they appeared. Their first interactions are with Ned and MJ, and it actually lightened the mood after the sad moments that just happened with Aunt May.
The bond between all of the Spider-Men was strong, when they first meet up with Tom’s Peter mourning over the loss of Aunt May and it’s one of the most emotional scenes in a Spider-Man movie ever. There was a verbal recap about their lives and what they did after the stories since their last appearances in their own respective movies, unfortunately this part was not visually shown.
Tom’s Peter interacting with Tobey and Andrew’s Peter is legendary. There is an hilarious version of the pointy meme when they are trying to figure out saying Peter 1 and Peter 2 and 3.
There were so many funny references and other lines in the movie between all of the chatacters, that made this film so much more enjoyable.
The movie was partially one big meme; in particular Green Goblin actually saying the line “I’m something of a scientist myself” and many other villains joking about their lines with Doc Ock using the “power of the sun” line multiple times in the movie. However, The way it was presented, slightly distracted away from the villains feeling intimidating apart from Green Goblin as Strange’s prison scene was like a comedy sketch. Lizard is highly under-used and barely does anything in the movie. so his moments at the end didn’t have much of an impact as they should have.
The CGI could have been better during swinging scenes for the suits of all of the Spider-Men. The moment happening was still amazing! Also, when Doctor Strange is standing on top of the Statue of Liberty and Andrew Garfield is on the scaffolding with Tobey Maguire, the editing in the backgrounds behind characters and use of lighting needs to be improved.
It was strange that they only kept Sandman and Lizard in CGI form except from the very end. Would have liked to see how their acting properly in the movie once again. However Sandmam new vfx looked 100% better since Spider-Man 3 (2007) as of course, technology has advanced in the film industry for working out the physical movement of sand.
The villains had much better updated design appearances to them now, compared to their previous movies. Electro being the major The de-aging looked well done.
It was incredible seeing Spider-Man’s hand-to-hand combat fight scenes with Green Goblin, very visceral and not so much use of webbing attacks this time and this is without a doubt Tom Holland’s best performance compared out of his entire film career!
It was absolutely crazy to see both Tobey and Andrew confront their villains once again and it’s so satisfying how they they were able to conclude all of this in the movie. It was sad to see them both go back. Hopefully, they will appear in further movies at some point again. Andrew finally gets an emotional redemption arc for not catchint Gwen. It was so unbelievable and rewarding.
The ending is very dramatic and heartbreaking, as well as inspiring and a bold move to make everyone forget who Peter is. Spider-Man still exists to everyone, but not Peter. His new suit looked incredible and It appears to be inspired by both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s suits. Vibrant blue and red. Such a classic appearanced. It’s the perfect ending to Spider-Man Movie!
There were plenty of missed opportunities for other characters that didn’t get included. Where was Mr Ditkovich or Mr Aziz!? Nowhere to be seen! Except, there was another extra at the end of the movie that was telling Peter when rent is due off-screen, in his own apartment.
Michael Giacchino’s compositions are beautiful and perfect in all of the right places. The music reinforced the very sad scenes as well as also strengthening those epic fights and build-ups to shocking surprises.
The music is also a lovely homage to legendary composers Danny Elfman and James Horner, as they have very brief renditions of Tobey and Andrew’s themes and the villains themes. The only issue here is that we don’t get to hear their full original movie soundtracks.
Post Credit scenes!
Spider-Man: No Way Home does leave a feeling of wanting more from this plot, there are many flaws with movie. However, the film has met so many other expectations and it was a wonderful fan service to three generations of cinema and a great send-off for this trilogy. Easily comic book movie of the year! This is a must-watch!
The two credit scenes offer major reveals of what is to come. This will affect the future of both MCU and Sony movies. Venom leaving behind a piece of the symbiote seems like it will have a shocking impact on the Spider-Man next trilogy for Tom Holland.
The most mind-blowing credit scene was the new Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness teaser trailer. It’s epic and insane! The multiverse is in a mess and Doctor Strange is going up against Gargantos, Mordo, and an evil version of Strange has also shown up. America Chavez is also very briefly shown. Wanda is in a very confused and dark place since losing her kids in WandaVision when Strange asks for her help.
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