Spider-man: No Way Home Review

SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME, from left: Zendaya, Tom Holland as Spider-Man, 2021. © Sony Pictures Releasing / © Marvel Entertainment / Courtesy Everett Collection

I was really expecting a lot based on the early reviews of Spider-man: No Way Home. While it certainly was fun, and it was well done, I couldn’t definitively say that its may favorite in the franchise so far. For a hard core fan of the Spiderverse, though, I can see why this has been touted as the best so far.

Synopsis: After Mysterio’s last video revealed Spider-man’s true identity to the world, thing begin to snowball for Peter, MJ and Ned. The normal life that Peter envisioned with his pals seemed to turn to dust as MJ and Ned fail to make it to their dream college MIT because of their association with the web slinger. Feeling guilty for his friends, Peter seeks out Doctor Strange to make the world forget that he is Spider-man, to which he surprisingly agreed. Things don’t work out the way they intended and pretty soon, everyone who knew Peter from the multiverse is in Peter’s world, villains and heroes alike.

Its hard to do a review of Spider-man: No Way Home without the spoilers but I will try my best to keep it within the things that you may already know from the trailer. In previous Spider-man movies, there’s typically one villain, two max. But this time around, Peter is faced with five villains from the five Spider-man movies before Tom Holland took over. There was Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina), Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe), Sandman (Thomas Haden Church), Lizard (Rhys Ifans) and Elektro (Jamie Fox). To make matters worse, Peter, the youngest Spider-man of the lot is the most ill-equipped to deal with them despite his experience with the Avengers, given his youth and immaturity.

For the first time since Tom Holland starred at Spider-man, I was annoyed with the character. While before, his youthful enthusiasm seemed charming, this time around his naivete led him to make a lot of poor choices. I guess this had a lot to do without having Tony Stark to guide him and serve as his father figure, which is very sad.

Tom Holland stars as Peter Parker/Spider-Man and Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Doctor Strange in Columbia Pictures’ SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME.

Stepping into the shoes of RDJ however, as the latest bada*s of the MCU is Doctor Stephen Strange, sorcerer supreme and king of snark. I laughed out loud at his sassiness on more than one occasion. Benedict Cumberbatch is an amazing serious actor but when he lets his hair down , his comedic timing is excellent as well. While Doctor Strange treated Peter with a sense of resignation much like Benedict Cumberbatch treats Tom Holland IRL when he babysits him on interviews (to keep him from spoiling the entire movie), Doctor Strange also betrayed his true feelings for the kid when he caved into his requests and during one pivotal moment towards the end when they are forced to make a major decision with huge consequences. Mad props to Benedict Cumberbatch’s acting, switching from sassy Beyonce snaps to heartfelt words of wisdom and delivering on the feels effortlessly.

There were a lot of cool battle scenes and if you have watched every installment of the franchise, its actually pretty neat to see Spidey’s villains come together again as if no time has passed. The costume mods for Elektro to adopt a design more religious to the comics was a nice touch too. My only complaint was that the villains changed their minds too easily in the face of Peter’s innocent faith. My favorite of the lot were the original villains, Doc Oc and Green Goblin.

As for the main cast, there was great chemistry among the three main actors and the new characters introduced in the movie. There was a great sense of adventure and fun with each interaction which gave the film a very pop culture vibe.

The thing about Spider-man: No Way Home is that you appreciate it better if you come into the movie without being spoiled of the surprises they have lined up for you. All I can say is that it delivers on a very Blues Clues vibe, you’ll definitely know when you witness it.

There was a lot of cheesy dialogue for sure about power and responsibility and the like, much like the previous Spider-man movies but it serves its purpose in connecting this installment to the rest of the Spider-man multiverse. As a fan, its really a rewarding moment to see the past and the future come together with MCU’s fourth phase.

How it ended made a lot of sense but still, it made me kind of sad. All in all, Spider-man: No Way Home had a great script, excellent fight scenes, and a neat set up for the MCU and the Spiderverse. It will make you feel sentimental about the web slinger’s on screen journey and leave you hopeful for the infinite possibilities that the franchise holds. Also, it hints at many set ups for Disney Plus+ streaming series *ehhrrm* Daredevil.

PS. There’s also a neat little treat for Pinoy fans when the movie gives a shoutout to actor Jacob Batalon’s Filipino roots. Watch out for it. It’s hilarious.