On July 2nd, 2019, I watched Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Funny story: I wasn’t planning to spend my Tuesday night watching Spider-Man. I mean, I wanted to go see the film, don’t get me wrong, but I wasn’t planning to watch it opening night. But alas, while everyone was out celebrating Canada Day and watching fireworks the night before, my boyfriend and I watched Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) on Netflix because he hadn’t seen it yet. One thing led to another and we decided to pre-order the tickets to see the next one.
And now, here we are.
This movie is directed by Jon Watts and stars Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spider-Man, Jake Gyllenhaal, Samuel L. Jackson and Zendaya.
In this sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming, and after the events in Avengers: Endgame (2019), Peter Parker (Holland) goes on a European trip with his classmates, but the vacation is cut short when danger comes along and someone has to put a stop to it.
What a perfect summer blockbuster to watch!
I’m going to start off with a spoiler-free review and then a spoiler review because there was a few things that happened that I want to break down and then piece together based off of a few things I’ve read online about the comics. Now that Phase 4 is about to begin, I want to predict Marvel’s future plans for this franchise so this is more like a Far From Home Review/Discussion/Thoughts.
Doctor Strange (2016) and Iron Man 3 (2013) Similarities?
First things first, this film gave me Spider-Man meets Doctor Strange (2016) and Iron Man 3 (2013) vibes, so if you like any of these films, you will definitely enjoy this one. Personally I think they copied Iron Man a little too much, which made the story a bit repetitive. I’m not going to elaborate just yet, as it contains a spoiler, so you read about that later on at your own risk (or after watching the movie)
This film was visually pleasing, not just from the shots around Europe but the special effects. If you’ve seen Doctor Strange, then you know how heavy the special effects are due to the mystic arts. Though there was no magic, this film did feel magical, in a way.
Action + Comedy = Entertainment
I enjoyed the comedy in this film, as always. I can’t tell which Spider-Man film was funnier though … I might have to say Homecoming because my boyfriend was laughing so hard at that one, and though we laughed in Far From Home, it wasn’t to the extent as Homecoming. But it was still hilarious and wildly entertaining.
The action scenes were also really great! The combination of action, comedy, tied with stunning visual effects made this film all the more fun to watch.
I also liked how Michelle/MJ (Zendaya) had more screen time and that we got to see more of her and Peter interacting. After Michelle revealed her nickname is “MJ,” we can assume that her character is supposed to be Mary Jane Watson, Peter Parker’s love interest in the comics and in the 2002 Spider-Man film with Tobey Maguire. Now that Liz Toomes was out of the picture, it was MJ’s time to shine with more of her one-liners and odd personality.
Plus, I really enjoyed Tom Holland as Peter Parker. I find his Spider-Man films a tad bit more relatable because the actors literally look like teenagers and these films are also more uplifting than the previous Spidey films, which is something my boyfriend brought to my attention (and it’s so true! If you’ve seen Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man, the films are kind of dark). I also liked how Tom Holland’s Spider-Man jumped right into the action of being Spider-Man, rather than setting up an origin story, as we’ve seen in the previous versions.
But I grew up watching (and loving!) Spider-Man so Sam Raimi’s trilogy will always have a special place in my heart.
There were two post-credits scene, both of which made me question what direction Marvel is heading towards now that the Avengers Saga is over. The post credits scenes will be explicitly explained later in the spoiler section, but if you haven’t seen the film yet, keep your eye out for two post-credits.
Warning: Spoilers from Avengers: Endgame will be revealed. Proceed at your own risk.
***Spoilers starting …***
After watching Far From Home, I believe this film’s purpose was to serve as a transition for Spider-Man in becoming the next Iron Man. Of course, no one can replace Tony Stark/Iron Man, as we see that even dead, he still had an impact on the film. But Spider-Man has personally been one of my favourite superheroes and a fan-favourite when it comes to making movies in Hollywood, so if he’s supposed to be the “next Iron Man”, I support it.
He’s also the youngest hero from the Avengers who must come to terms with his great responsibility, rather than simply being a friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man. After watching this movie and Endgame (you can read my spoiler-free Endgame review here), and after reading some stuff online, I’m thinking that Marvel might be heading towards a younger generation of Earth’s mightiest heroes aka the Young Avengers.
From what I gathered, the Young Avengers was a superhero group from the comic books with ties from the original Avengers team. If the Young Avengers happens to be the next Marvel phase, I’m thinking that Spider Man will be the “leader” of the team, taking on Iron Man’s role.
Meanwhile, in Endgame, after finding out that Harley Keener (the little boy in Iron Man 3) was the unknown teenage boy standing alone at Tony’s funeral, I read online that people thought this meant that Marvel was hinting that their next Phase might focus on the Young Avengers. This was where I first heard about the Young Avengers and the gears started turning in my head.
If Marvel decides to work with a younger generation of superheroes, then my predictions for who will be on the Young Avengers team is Spider-Man, Harley Keener, Cassie Lang (Scott Lang/Ant-Man’s now grown up daughter, as we saw in Endgame, who was also a member in the comics apparently), maybe Hawkeye’s kids and maybe–just maybe–Morgan Stark (aka Tony’s child. I know, she’s like 5 but I was really hoping to see Katherine Langford in Endgame so I think she should be given a second chance to reprise the role and make her Marvel on-screen debut).
Oh, oh, and if Marvel is steering towards a younger generation of heroes, the final movie should definitely have an epic battle scene where the younger heroes from the TV shows like Runaways and Cloak & Dagger make an appearance the same way all the heroes showed up to defeat Thanos in Endgame.
Okay I’m getting ahead of myself now ….
***Spoilers end …***
Far From Home has left me with a bunch of unanswered questions and I can’t wait to see what happens next and where all these films are heading. Knowing that Marvel has big plans for the future (that will probably take another few years or so to play out) makes me really impatient.
Overall, I enjoyed this film. Great acting performances, great effects, great action and comedy. What can I say? It’s a Marvel film after all. If you’ve enjoyed the previous 22 films in Phase 3, you’re going to enjoy the last one.
Let me know in the comments below what your thoughts on Spider-Man: Far From Home are or if you’re going to watch it! What are your predictions for Marvel’s next Phase? I would love to hear your thoughts on it!
Spider-Man: Far From Home is currently in theatres.
And now, for my Super Spidey Spoiler Review!
Warning: Spoilers from Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019), Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017), Spider-Man (2002), Spider-Man 3 (2007), Captain Marvel (2019), Avengers: Endgame (2019), Iron Man (2008), Iron Man 3 (2013) and Captain America: Civil War (2016) will be revealed, so if you’re not caught up with all the Marvel films, proceed at your own risk!
***Spoilers starting …***
Copycat Villain Motives
So back to when I said this film reminded me of Doctor Strange because of the effects, the reason behind these “magical” effects was because of the villain in this film, Quentin Beck/Mysterio (played by Jake Gyllenhaal). When they first announced Jake Gyllenhaal’s role in the film, I kind of assumed he was the bad guy because no one else was talking about who played the villain in Far From Home. Then the trailer came out and he looked like a good guy, and then most of the film he acted like the good guy, so I was confused but I gave him the benefit of the doubt.
I should have trusted my instincts.
I don’t think his villainous reveal came to much of a shock like Adrian Toomes’ reveal as Liz’s father in Homecoming did (now that was a good plot twist! Even my boyfriend didn’t see it coming). While his motives were unexpected, I found it wasn’t too shocking at the same time, as we have seen this before in previous Marvel films.
Beck was actually someone who worked at Stark Industries where Tony Stark used his illusion technology and renamed it B.A.R.F. Remember that presentation of Tony’s memory with his parents before they died in Civil War? Yeah, Beck created that and he wasn’t too happy with Tony afterwards.
This wasn’t the first time an old Stark employee (or a wannabe Stark employee) sought out vengeance against Tony or wanted to use Stark’s technology for wrongdoing, which is why I said the plot (mainly the villain’s motives but I didn’t want to spoil it) felt repetitive. As you recall, there was Obidiah Stane from Iron Man and Aldrich Killian from Iron Man 3, but Killian’s vengeance on Iron Man for rejecting his project and then Tony making a mockery out of him reminded me a lot of Beck’s vengeance. Iron Man used Beck’s project and turned it into something Beck never intended, without properly acknowledging Beck as the creator either.
In other words, Tony turned B.A.R.F and Beck into a mockery (I mean, he also renamed the invention to B.A.R.F, which must have left a bad taste in Beck’s mouth … pun intended). Tony then fired Beck later, which must have ridiculed him even more.
Plus, one of Beck’s associates turned out to be someone who worked at Stark Industries with Stane in the first Iron Man. These revelations were all seen through flashbacks, which I actually enjoyed because that’s one of my favourite devices used in film, especially since it connected previous Marvel films to each other. I love it when little details come together and explain bigger details we didn’t see coming.
Just to clarify, I believe all of Beck’s minions were actually old Stark employees or people with a vendetta against Tony Stark. You can think of them as Tony Stark protesters (I kind of think it’s funny how, even though Tony was already dead, his haters still held a grudge against him).
Spider-Man Becomes Iron Man?
There were also similarities between the Iron Man films and Far From Home that hint at Spider-Man’s transition into the “new” Iron Man.
For example, Peter was given Tony’s glasses, E.D.I.T.H (which stands for Even Dead I’m The Hero. Classic Tony Stark, am I right?), and when he put them on, I couldn’t help but think he looked like a younger version of Tony, which I’m sure was what Marvel was going for.
Also, when Happy rescued Peter on a plane, there was a scene where Peter reconstructed his Spider-Man suit to defeat Beck, and as he moved holograms in the air, talked to the machine and worked vigorously, Happy watched at a distance with a little smile on his face. You can probably guess what everyone was thinking: OMG, Peter’s just like Tony.
And let’s not forget the iconic moment when Happy played “Back in Black” by “Led Zepplin.”
Beck vs. Stark Tech
The advanced technology used by Beck and Stark Industries drove the appearance versus reality concept in this film. My guess is that this won’t be the last time we see Beck’s illusions, as I explain those post-credits.
So, while Spider-Man was defeating Beck, there was a quick shot of one of Beck’s associates who downloaded something on a USB, either saving Beck’s work to be carried out in the future, or something else.
(Can I just say, that final battle scene where Spider-Man used his spidey sense [aka the “Peter tingle”] in Beck’s illusions was so cool!)
During the first post-credits scene, J. Jonah Jameson (you might remember the character from the 2002 Spider-Man movie and the comics. He was the editor-in-chief of the Daily Bugle newspaper, which, in Far From Home is now a news website. He is also played by the same actor in the 2002 version, J.K. Simmons) broadcasts a video that was anonymously released (Gee, I wonder who would post something like that?). This video shows a helpless Beck, edited to make Spider-Man look like the bad guy and Beck as the victim/hero. But it gets worse, because then Beck reveals who Spider-Man truly is, while Spider-Man is outside, watching this video unfold, among the New Yorkers.
Even though Beck is presumed dead (at least I think he’s dead), his minions and advanced illusion technology is still out there and from that cliffhanger in the post-credits, it looks like they’re not done wreaking havoc onto the world.
This post-credits scene kind of reminded me of the end of Iron Man, when Tony reveals his heroic identity. Although Peter Parker’s identity wasn’t revealed on his own terms, now Peter is going to have to brave the world with everyone knowing his identity, just like Tony did (so there’s another “Spider-Man becomes Iron Man” connection)
And despite Beck’s similarity to previous Iron Man villains, I would still like to see him return to play a prominent villainous role in Phase 4. It would definitely allow Peter the chance to step into Tony’s shoes and embody this new Iron Man as he uses and designs new Stark tech to defeat Beck’s illusions once and for all, while clearing his name.
Speaking Of Illusions …
As for the second post-credits scene, we see Nick Fury and Maria Hill later revealed to be Skrulls in disguise, Talos and his wife, Soren (you may remember them from Captain Marvel). The real Nick Fury is on vacation … actually not even, he’s in space with a bunch of other Skrulls.
This scene had raised so many questions for me that will take forever to list. All I know, after researching Skrulls back when Captain Marvel came out, was that in the comics, there was a Kree-Skrull war. I learned that the Skrulls weren’t exactly the good guys in the comics like we saw in Captain Marvel, but maybe the Skrulls will also play an important role in the next Phase? Maybe this war will be part of Phase 4? Or maybe the Skrulls will become bad later on in the films and invade Earth, using the “Secret Invasion” plot from the comics (basically this is where the Skrulls disguised themselves as superheroes, that’s all I know)? Maybe the Skrulls will team up with Beck’s minions to create an ultimate appearance versus reality dilemma?
So the main takeaway from this film was that not everything is what it seems.
Also, in Far From Home, aside from from trying to save the world, Peter was faced with another problem: someone was going after his girl.
Brad Davis (played by Remy Hill) wanted to do whatever it took for MJ to choose him over Peter. He failed … quite embarrassingly, but my boyfriend predicted that he may be Peter’s next antagonist. I was telling him how badly I wanted to see the Green Goblin as a villain because he’s my favourite Spider-Man villain (See, I told you Sam Raimi’s films held a special place in my heart) so we decided that it would be so cool if somehow, in the next film, Brad became the Green Goblin.
In the 2002 Spider-Man film, it was Peter’s friend’s father, Norman Osborn, who was the Green Goblin. Later in Spider-Man 3 (2007), Peter’s friend, Harry Osborn, became the New Goblin, in order to seek vengeance on Spider-Man for killing his dad. There was also a Peter-MJ-Harry love triangle going on so maybe this Peter-MJ-Brad love triangle isn’t over? Maybe now that everyone knows who Spider-Man’s identity is (and that he’s a “bad guy”), Brad will try to take matters into his own hands? Maybe he will try so hard to become the next hero to defeat the big bad Peter Parker/Spider-Man and win the girl that he ends up becoming the next villain instead?
I’m going to end off with a side note: Zendaya looks absolutely stunning in red hair!
When I saw the photos of her with red hair at the press tour, I was really hoping that at some point, her character dyed her hair red in the film to embody MJ’s classic red hair colour. Maybe next film?
***Spoilers end …***
Again, let me know in the comments below what your thoughts on Spider-Man: Far From Home are or if you’re going to watch it! What are your predictions for Marvel’s next Phase? I would love to hear your thoughts on it!
PS: if you have any spoilery thoughts or comments, make sure to add a spoiler warning first!
Spider-Man: Far From Home is currently in theatres.