Spider-Man: Homecoming is effervescent, witty and fun

But it doesn't pass the Bechdel test.


The third time is actually the charm for Spider-Man, which has five bad movies to its name in a bizarre, expensive and long-running attempt to turn this cartoon into a high-quality living thing. Andrew Garfield was in his 30s as Peter Parker; Tobey Maguire was 26 when he started this whole mess off in 2002. Why Hollywood thinks men can play young so long is a mystery as confusing as Leonardo DiCaprio’s continued access to supermodels. Tom Holland just turned 21 and has a baby face and a dancer’s body, making him the first actor in this franchise closest to marrying the teen nerd Peter with superhero Peter in a realistic way on both sides. When Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr. is at his best as this prick) wrongs him in a business deal involving “exotic material” (alien tech) clean-up, Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton) begins developing big-time weapons. Now they’re making it to the streets of New York, where Spidey is trying to hone his skills with the child locks still on. He takes it upon himself to solve the issue. Imagine the calamity. Marvel has stumbled in the past by going too dark; Homecoming is an effervescent, witty, fun ride with a casually diverse—culturally and in body type—cast of teens to support. Too bad none of the women, a misused Marisa Tomei and a razor-sharp Zendaya among them, talk to each other. Next time.

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