4 out of 5
I'm not doing a Homer. I'm not going to spoil the surprises and story of the new Spiderman film, No Way Home. This is a safe place. I'll do a review with spoilers in teh NEw Year when most folk will have had a chance to see the film or the BIG secret will have leaked out.
No Way Home is the third film in Tom Holland's accidental trilogy and it is probably the best. Sometimes these sequels pack in too many villains and no one gets enough screen time and it all falls apart. This film packs in more villains than I've ever seen in a standalone Marvel film and it holds together really, really well. Part of this is down to casting. These famous actors know how to use their limited screen time plus the script makes the most of them.
I've been asked if one needs to have watched any of the previous Spiderman films and the answer is, probably. There's no need to watch Tom Holland's first two outings but, as you will have seen from the trailers, villains from the earlier films, the ones with Toby Maguire and Andrew Garfield in the titular role, do show up. So, it can't hurt to know who everyone is. A word of warning though; it will take you 11 hours and 47 minutes to get up to speed. I decided to take one for the team and watched all five films, from Toby Maguire's first Spidey outing in 2002 right up to the second Andrew Garfield one in 2014. Well-armed, I went to see No Way Home and it felt a better experience.
So, what can I say about the plot? Not much actually. The trailer gives away the basic plot that thanks to Mysterio in Spiderman: Far From Home, everyone knows Peter Parker is Spidey. Peter (Tom Holland) decides to ask to ask fellow Avenger, Dr Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) to cast a spell so that the world will forget that Peter is the web-crawler. All does not go well and chaos ensues and Spiderman sets about putting the world to rights.
Along the way, Peter's friends assist. Tom Holland's real-life beau Zendaya returns as MJ. Jacob Batalon is back as school mate Ned who now has magical powers. Who knew?
Jon Watts returns again and actually manages to reign in the huge cast, the very large pallette and the CGI chaos. It's a brainless yet clever addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and sets up the next film: Doctor Strage in the Multiverse of Madness which is out in May 2022. It's a fun way to spend a few hours and I enjoyed the BIG reveal and the screams of fellow cinema-goers when it happened. Irish audiences never scream in films but they did in this one! Enjoy!
For completists - there are 2 after credit scenes which you will wnat to stay for.