‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ is not just another rehash, it’s a film of it’s own.

Spider-Man: Homecoming
 is set several months after the events of Captain America: Civil War, Peter Parker, with the help of his mentor Tony Stark, tries to balance his life as an ordinary high school student in Queens, New York City while fighting crime as his superhero alter ego Spider-Man as a new threat, the Vulture, emerges.

If you think it was a franchise that had been done to death, much like DC’s Batman, it’s the friendly, neighbourhood web slinger in Spider-Man. It wasn’t long ago that we saw Andrew Garfield’s incarnation in The Amazing Spider-Man
in 2012 and it’s sequel two years later in 2014. Before that, in the early noughties, we had the hilariously bad and over the top Spider-Man trilogy starring Tobey Maguire and to be honest, nothing will be able to beat those incarnations of Spidey, from Peter Parker attempting to figure out his web slinging powers atop a New York City building or the ever hilarious emo dancing incarnation.

What makes Tom Holland’s take on the famous character is that he makes it feel fresh and new, without rehashing the “Uncle Ben” story, assuming you know the tale already. And going into this film, it would honestly be a surprise if you didn’t. With the effects up to the ever excellent Marvel standard, Holland brings a humourous new light to the character that’s a mix between Maguire’s and Garfield’s. The film has both it’s serious and humours moments, doing well to balance them out.

This new series proves that it’s going to be a winner and it’s so good to see that Sony has finally lent the character back to its original owners. Now, if only they’d do that with the X-Men franchise, we could finally get some more Hugh Jackman as Wolverine as Jackman has stated that if Wolverine was apart of the MCU, he would continue playing his character. I mean, who wouldn’t want that? He’s like the Robert Downey Jr. to the Tony Stark — Jackman isn’t just playing Wolverine, he is Wolverine.

Anyway, getting distracted here.

The good thing about Homecoming is that the MCU have had a good amount of time previously to get the ‘superhero genre’ right and with the successes of Deadpool and Logan proving that superhero films have grown so much into their own genre, Homecoming is amongst some of the first to becoming more interesting if they were more than ‘just another superhero movie.’ Homecoming also wasn’t as dark as it’s previous Spider-Man’s as well as many other superhero films of late, which was nice because we got to see a younger, more childlike version of the character really growing into his own skin and really acts as a coming-of-age film. It was a nice little break from all the seriousness of the MCU up until this point and now we have Thor: Ragnarok for a little more comedic relief before delving back into Black Panther and the Infinity Wars duology.

The film’s efficient and lets the actor’s act, which is a rare thing in blockbuster movies because it’s usually, for example, just Tom Cruise running away from things or an overabundance of effects driven sequences where where we don’t get any emotionality and when we do, it feels fake and forced. Homecoming is a definite step up in Marvel villains where Michael Keaton’s Vulture is as compelling and as complicated as he should be. And as the saying goes, you either die a hero or live long enough to a villain. Thank God Keaton did in his case.

It was also really nice to see some familiar faces like Chris Evans’ Captain America/Steve Rogers popping up in school training videos and in the *spoiler alert* post-credit scene where he mocked all of us who stayed until the very end; Gwyneth Paltrow’s Pepper Potts appearing for a few seconds at the end of the film; along with Jon Favreau’s Happy Hogan and Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark having no more than about ten minutes screen time in total.

Though it may feel like you’re tired of seeing that there’s another Spidey film, this one’s no doubt worth your money and time.

Film-O-Meter: 8/10.


‘Mortdecai’ is a film that shouldn’t have been made.

Mortdecai is a film about debonair art dealer and part time rogue Charlie Mortdecai who juggles angry Russians, the British MI5, and an international terrorist to recover a stolen painting rumoured to contain a code that leads to Nazi gold.

It’s just a shame to see that Johnny Depp is get worse and worse with every movie his in. He hasn’t played a decent role in years. Probably since Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl and that film was made over ten years ago. Even Finding Neverland, which was released a year late in 2004, was a heartfelt performance but he has since dropped off since then. His cameo in 21 Jump Street was a nice surprise but was just a rehash of something he had done at the beginning of his career. It is definitely clear now that Depp is happy off doing his own thing and not really caring what us as an audience or the general consensus of his performance mannerisms are. Many of his latter characters in his films have become quite similar. Mortedcai can definitely be seen to be closely moulded to that of Jack Sparrow.

Depp has constantly been headlining roles in projects with large budgets that have barely broken even (see The Lone Ranger) and over time, shrivelled away without any pop culture impact.

I know it’s probably not fair that I should be criticising him so harshly, but stars with names like Depp’s can pull a fair amount of funding from investors that result in films like The Rum Diary, Dark Shadows, and Transcendence to be made. With his name included, amongst other factors, those films were able to be made.

The question is: how could writer Eric Aronson, director David Koepp, and produce Depp be apart of something so awfully unfunny? It was badly written and directed. If done better, it could’ve been more interesting then it presented itself to be but instead, it was something I could barely force myself to sit through.

This film proves that if you make a film about a character who can’t take himself seriously, the audiences won’t be able to take the film seriously. Mortdecai as a character was poorly-constructed and the film was already up in flames before we left the opening scene because of its reliance on said character. The story was enough to make you crazy and it wasn’t because it was confusing. It was because of it’s weakly-written supporting roles from actors (Oliva Munn, Ewan McGregor) who have proven to hold their weight in a variety of films.

The film is a $60million flop that was an easy pick for critics and audiences’ worst film of the year, along with the horror that is Fifty Shades of Grey.

Film-O-Meter: 4/10.