Spider-Man: Far From Home is the second film surrounding the iconic character that Jon Watts directed back into life in 2017. Tom Holland is back as Peter Parker in a post-Endgame world. Repercussions of Thanos loom over Peter’s life as he finds himself navigating teenage life again. But now Peter has a chance to relax with a school trip to Italy with his pal Ned (Jacob Batalon) and his own efforts to win the heart of MJ (Zendaya). However, Nick Fury has a different vacation plan for Spider-Man as he insists Peter helps with an interdimensional threat alongside Quentin Beck, a.k.a Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal).
Sins of Thanos: It is no spoiler by now that the events of Infinity War and Endgame will have a long-standing effect on how the rest of the MCU advances. Spider-Man: FFH is our first look at just how messed up things will be not just for the physical world, but for the emotions of our heroes. Peter Parker is destroyed — his life was turned upside down by “the snap” (please see Infinity War and Endgame). His mentors: gone. His motivation: lost. His drive to be a hero: vanquished. And if Thanos did not do enough for Peter then the relationship built with Quentin Beck (Gyllenhaal) proves to be confusing enough to continue to deplete our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.
Jake Gyllenhaal: The announcement of the iconic comic book villain Mysterio as the antagonist in this film raised excitement for fans. But when Jake Gyllenhaal was cast as the mind-bending magician, excitement hit an all-time high. Jake Gyllenhaal delivered in a big way. Quentin Beck is seductively trustworthy and utterly ruthless as he phases in and out of lines of morality.
Comic Homage: There is a moment towards the end of the second act of Spider-Man: FFH wherein Jon Watts directs a sequence of events so similar to the panels of a 1990s comic book that all the audience can do is smile ear to ear despite the horrible events occurring on the screen. It very well may be the greatest scene in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Beautifully sequenced, written well so that the acting from Holland and Gyllenhaal never miss a beat. On top of that, the writing team for the film is brave and daring. Keeping us ready to go for the third installment.
Tom Holland: Not since Sam Rami’s Spider-Man 2 have we seen such a vulnerable Peter Parker. And just like Maguire’s ability to deliver genuine grief, depression, and redemption, Holland does not fail. Holland’s performance may be more touching due to age, but when he feels defeated, you, the audience, are in that pit of despair as well. It is the same for his moments of triumph.