Spiderman No Way Home
Directed by Jon Watts
Rating: ** ½
“Please, scoobydo this crap,” says mentor Benedict Cumberbatch to protégé Peter Holland, a.k. a. Spiderman.
As you sit enervated and zapped into helpless submission as the screen lights up with a visual spectacle that Marvel-ites are so used to(for us the non-converts it is still an underwhelming universe populated with swinging superheroes and plummeting skyscrapers) you often wish someone would, well, scoobydo the mess.
But there is no escape. And after a point you don’t really want to escape because there is so much effort going into building this enthralling edifice of stunning spectacle that you feel guilty for not sharing the edifying enthusiasm of the audience around you.
Spiderman: No Way Home is a followup to 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming and 2019’s Spider-Man: Far From Home. Visually it is even more resplendent than the other two films. The sky opens up frequently to the kind of devastating fireworks that audiences of Indian cinema are not used to.
Repeatedly, as I watched he FX department create a world of disarming apocalypse I wondered how Karan Johar’s Brahmastra hopes to compete with this.
It’s not about the budget. It’s about the vision, scale and canvas. Spiderman grapples with several villainous forces, played with an admirably straight face by actors who have seen better days like Willem Defoe, Jamie Foxx and Alfred Molina who are clearly in this for the fun of it, and not for the zeroes on the cheques.
Got that? Moving on, Spiderman No Way Home has little in terms of plotting perspective. We understand that Spiderman and his girlfriend(Zendaya who seems to be having fun clinging for her dear life to sides of spiralling buildings) are being chased by sundry villains as they make their way through a maze of slinky action sequences, each meant to mesmerize us with their meticulous ravishing meditation on global wreckage.
The film has a breathless almost wheezing pace, allowing itself no room for a pause. Restrooms and the cafeteria of theatres screening the new Spiderman film are likely to remain deserted. There is too much here to ingest. Even as the plot remains wafer-slim, content is compensated with a visual velocity seldom witnessed in the earlier Marvel films.
For a film about Spiderman, his girlfriend Zendaya gets a whole lot footage . This is her second spectacle in a row where she accompanies the child-man superhero on his infantile odyssey. While Dune was largely out of tune, Spiderman No Way Home finds its way back to headquarters even after straying into a blizzard of diversions and digressions.
So is this film worth the risk? Audiences around me answered the question. One of them said to me , ‘If I have only one last film to see, it would be this.’
Cheers to that.