I know a movie is going to be good when 10 minutes in I’m already engaged and paying 100% attention. Just 10 minutes was enough to know, or at least predict, that Spider-Man was going to be awesome. And it was. I’m not going to do a full on review. Its Rotten Tomatoes score should be proof enough of its success and broad appeal, so I’ll just hit the highs. Warning: I may spoil a few things.
- It was a visual treat from the beginning all the way through to the post-credits scene. I have never seen animation quite like it before. And that makes sense considering Sony had to practically rebuild their animation software. The end result really does bring a comic book feel to the movie.
- The soundtrack. The soundtrack isn’t for everyone but if you like hip hop, it’s got some nice tracks that just fits the movie. It’s music Miles was into so naturally it would be the soundtrack he would want.
- It was a different story than the Edge of the Spider-Verse story line from a couple of years ago. I thought it would have loosely followed that story, but I was wrong. That doesn’t make the story better or worse, it was just different. And for the record, the story was excellent. Oh, and less Spider-People died in this movie than the Edge of the Spider-Verse story that I thought it was based on. So that’s good.
- I was not emotionally prepared for the Stan Lee cameo. I cried. Not full on ugly face crying, but tears were definitely streaming down my face for some time. I knew he had a cameo, but I was seriously not expecting to get hit so hard with emotions. He plays a shopkeeper that sells Miles a Spider-Man costume. Miles buys the costume to attend a Spider-Man tribute after his death. The costume is ill-fitting and Stan says to Miles, “it always fits eventually.” It may not sound like much, but that is classic Stan Lee. He always had words of encouragement and wisdom. He also says, “I sure am gonna miss him.” I lost it. I didn’t even try to hold back the tears. It was too much. The term “bittersweet” doesn’t even begin to describe the roller coaster of emotions.
- And thinking beyond what he says in that scene, it’s also symbolic for he is ushering in a new Spider-Man era. Peter Parker will always be a Spider-Man, but he isn’t the only Spider-Man. The premise of the movie proves just that. The Miles Morales Spider-Man is very popular, and in today’s overly-sensitive PC era, Marvel and Disney would be stupid to not promote an African-American/Latino teenager turned superhero. So, here is Stan running some kind of shop, selling Miles a cheap costume. Miles may not have been his creation, but the symbolism of him passing the torch to a new Spider-Man is too great to ignore. It was a small scene but powerful and meaningful at the same time.
- The post-credits scenes in all of the MCU films are always a treat, like an after-dinner mint. This one did not disappoint. It was quite funny, a throwback to the original cartoon, and a world of possibilities for a sequel.
It’s so good, I want to see it again.
“I sure am gonna miss him,” said Shopkeeper Stan of Peter. We’re gonna miss you too, Stan. We’re gonna miss you too.