Movie Review – Spider-man: Homecoming

Spider-man: Homecoming

Spider-man Homecoming

Starring: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr., Marisa Tomei, Jon Favreau, Jacob Batalon, Zendaya, Donald Glover, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, Bokeem Woodbine, and more.

Directed by: Jon Watts Screenplay by: Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley, Jon Watts, Christopher Ford, Chris McKenna, and Erik Sommers Based on the Comic Book by: Stan Lee and Steve Ditko Cinematography by: Salvatore Totino Music by: Michael Giacchino

Premise: After getting a new suit and helping out during the Civil War, Peter is dying to help again. Unfortunately, he’s not getting any callbacks. But he makes do by going out every night and helping people where he can. But after tangling with a group of robbers using alien technology, he’s told to stay out of it. But Peter can’t let it go. (Rated  PG-13)

Review:

1) Acting – Total Thumbs Up: Tom Holland does a nice job as Peter Parker. Michael Keaton did a fresh and cold spin on Adrian Toomes to great effect.  (His talk on the way to the prom and his picking up on things was almost creepy!) Robert Downey Jr. and Jon Favreau brought some lovely additional dimensions to the story. Nice work by all parties.

Additional kudos to Jacob Batalon. He was adorable as Peter’s friend. He brought a lot to the film as well.

2) Special Effects – Total Thumbs Up: The special effects department was kept very busy in the movie. They came up with some neat human and alien technology hybrids – vulture’s gear is a prime example. Toomes looked creepy in the mask and glowing green eyes. Brrr.

Tony’s Spider-man suit was fab! More gadgets and gizmos than James Bond. Wait till you see all the awesome ways Tony has given him to use his web thrower. The suit is just too cool!

The cutter machine at the bank, the shock puncher, and the phase gadgets were excellent. If Toomes had been a little less messed up in the head, he could have helped bring some super amazing advances to the world.

The ferry scene and the Washington Monument scenes were great. The destruction at the bank and the deli were well done, and we even get bus wars! The group looked to have had a lot of fun with the Stark plane as well. There were some terrific bits in that sequence. Tons of neat stuff for out viewing pleasure.

3) Plot/Story – Total Thumbs Up: They started the movie right – with a mutated version of the cartoon theme song! Booyah! It got me right in the mood. 🙂 Then the beginning sequence (shaky cam, but not for long – yay!) where we see Peter picked up and taken to join Tony and the others in Civil War.  Priceless!

With six people credited for the screenplay, I was amazed it came out so good. Toomes motivation wasn’t well grounded but wasn’t bad enough to be jarring. No way he didn’t make a ton of cash from his illegal sales. You’d think he would have saved some. 😛

Tons and tons and tons of adorable moments. (Guy in a chair!) The introduction of the Captain America tapes was a genius idea! This is especially so because they take the gag all the way to the end of the credits! (So stay until he shows! :P) I laughed myself silly at the last one. 😛 The comments from teachers and others in different parts of the movie were also rather humorous and came up when you least expected them.

I was a little puzzled that they decided to make Peter fifteen years old. That seemed a little young. Plus he didn’t look fifteen. Seventeen would have been much more believable, and he would have still had all the same problems. 😛 Spidey is super tough, so his getting knocked out by a small tap at one point seemed a little convenient, but it was a minor nitpick.

4) Stunts – Total Thumbs Up: CGI mixed with real stunt work gave the audience all sorts of fun to enjoy.

5) Music – Total Thumbs Up: Like I mentioned before – Michael Giacchino had me at the groovy version of the original 1967 Spiderman cartoon’s theme music. Some snazzy tracks and great action tracks. It added to the enjoyment of the film.

Conclusion: This Spider-man reboot is well worth seeing. All the small and fun moments truly make it a delicious film. Great effects and cool gadgets are ‘frosting on the cake’. 🙂

Rating: 4 out of 5 (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Full Price to See Again!)

Movie Review – Captain America: Civil War

Captain America: Civil War

Starring: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Jeremy Renner, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Rudd, Emily VanCamp, Tom Holland, Daniel Brühl, Frank Grillo, William Hurt, Martin Freeman, and more.

Directed by: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo Screenplay by: Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely Comic Book by: Mark Millar Based on Characters Created by: Joe Simon and Jack Kirby Cinematography by: Trent Opaloch Music by: Henry Jackman


Premise: The United Nations has introduced a measure to make the Avengers missions fall under an oversight committee. Split on whether this would be a good thing or not, the team suffers a further rift when a bomb explodes during the UN meeting to ratify the measure and a grainy picture of someone resembling Bucky is caught on camera. The UN puts out a find and kill order, but Cap wants to try to bring him in alive. But there’s more going on than any of them realize. (Rated PG-13)

Review:

1) Acting – Total Thumbs Up: Lots of our favorite people are back and we meet some new ones as well. Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. are great together as their characters’ strong wills clash even as they desperately try to cling to their friendship. Scarlett Johansson can speak volumes with a raised eyebrow! Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa was a great choice. And loved to see Martin Freeman thrown into the mix as well. (Especially since his partner Sherlock will be the next Dr. Strange!)

2) Special Effects – Total Thumbs Up: Lots to love from the special effects department! The sequence with Tony Stark as an eighteen year old looked just like him! Amazing work.

All the mix of tech and super powers in mass battle looked awesome. Especially with Antman’s couple of surprises at the airport. Talk about a battle! Ant-man playing inside Tony’s armor? Priceless.

The russian lab and the underwater supermax prison were very cool. Both look super tough. And all of Falcon’s awesome toys – I want them! Drool.

3) Plot/Story – Thumbs Up: I’d worried a bit about the plot from what I’d seen in the previews. But overall it wasn’t as bad as I’d feared it might be and they did have several surprises. As usual, though, the devil is in the details – and the details tend to be the first thing ignored when it gets in the way of causing trouble. One grainy photo and no one bothers to do actual research and police work? Please. Later it happens, but not where it should have. Most won’t notice the oversight as the non-stop action goes at super speed.

Another minor issue is lack of communication – even amongst willful guys. It was yet another convenient item left out until too late – no one even tried saying Bucky didn’t do it even after he told Cap as much. They were busy, but not that busy. And no one even tried to prove it one way or the other.

A lot of the driving force on the plot is the first initial rift with regards to the UN and the perceived lack of caring by the Avengers. While all these items kept getting brought up about how people were killed and things were destroyed, not once did anyone even try to point out how many more would have died had Wanda done nothing, or how many thousands would have been hurt or killed if they’d let the bad guys run off with the infectious disease they stole. Ultron or the aliens – hundreds of thousands to millions of dead if gone unchecked. While I grieve, and so do the heroes, for the deaths of the innocents, how many more would there have been if the Avengers did nothing? Reality bites, but the facts should not be ignored either.

Aside from that, the driving emotions and personalities seemed pretty spot on. Though the fact they wait to the very end for someone to finally mention Bucky is a VICTIM was yet another omission for convenience. So while I understood Tony’s rage, I couldn’t quite see that he’d go as far as he did because he knew about Bucky’s brainwashing. But for whatever reason friends against friends seem to be the thing in all the plots lately.

Ton of fun moments! Ton of awesome one liners! Great introduction for the Black Panther! Lots of fun interaction between the characters. And I loved Cap’s note to Tony at the end and Tony’s indirect, yet totally meaningful response.

Oh, and Spidey’s suggestion from that “old movie” and them doing it? Awesome!

4) Stunts – Total Thumbs Up: Between the hand-to-hand combat, car chases, stairwell chases, air chases, and more – there is a ton to love from the stunt department. Real and imagined. 🙂

5) Cinematography – Total Thumbs Up: Lovely job on the cinematography. Cool angles and some lovely sweeping scenes so we could enjoy the action from any number of vantage points. Nice!

Conclusion: “Captain America: Civil War” is filled with awesome CGI work and magnificent battles and chases. A few bits were a little contrived, but they were in the minority and there were definitely unexpected surprises. This was a fun ride! (Two extra scenes so stay all the way through the credits!)

Rating: 4 out of 5 (Hubby’s Rating: Worth Paying Full Price to See Again!)