I can feel you bristling through the phone/computer. This title got you heated. You’re probably reading this because you’ve already seen Spiderman: No Way Home and decided it was one of the best movies you’ve ever seen.
And I respect that. But you’re wrong.
Look, I’ve heard so many people say that Spiderman: No Way Home is Marvel’s best movie. No way. It’s not even the best Spiderman movie. That title belongs to either Spiderman 2 or Into the Spiderverse. Third place would probably be Homecoming.
**SPOILERS AHEAD. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.**
You’re just psyched out of your mind that the whole gang from every previous Spiderman movie was in attendance. Tobey. Andrew. They even got Alfred Molina and Jaime Foxx. That’s pretty hype, for sure. But nostalgic cameos don’t make a quality movie. It’s just fun fan service for people like us who love Spiderman.
So I’m going to review this as if it’s a standalone movie. And No Way Home standing on its own eight feet is solid, but not a masterpiece.
The acting is solid across the board. Snappy dialogue. There aren’t any legendary one-liners except for the “great power, great responsibility” bit from the 2003 classic. In particular, we saw some incredible physical acting from Tom Holland. I’ve never seen a more convincing emotional breakdown from any character in a recent MCU movie. Holland crushed it.
The fights are a ton of fun. CGI is great. But that’s what you expect from Marvel movies now.
The two underrated things I wish I saw more people talking about in this movie were Matt Murdock’s cameo and Doc Ock’s transformation. Murdock’s cameo is how every cameo should be done. It was seamless–fit perfectly in with the situation and didn’t draw too much attention to itself. It makes me excited for Charlie Cox and the possibility of slipping Daredevil into the MCU. As for Doc Ock, watching him fight with the good guys at the end was incredibly satisfying. I have a soft spot for bad-guys-turned-good arcs, so that was beautiful.
And yeah, sure, the Tobey and Andrew appearances were cool. I won’t deny it. The Spidey-to-Spidey dialogue it led to was a ton of fun, but it wasn’t important to the story. The scene where the three of them discussed their web shooters got a laugh out of me.
There wasn’t anything bad about this movie. Just things that felt like missed opportunities.
The biggest swing-and-a-miss was the lack of focus around Peter’s hardships as a public Spiderman. There was a big focus on this at the beginning of the movie and that’s great–that’s what made Spiderman 2 so compelling. That movie successfully showed the audience how much life sucks when you’re a superhero. But No Way Home dropped a lot of that by the time you’re 45 minutes in. It’s a shame.
The only other complaint I can really give is that this movie smells like fan-servicey superhero fodder. It’s well made. It’s perfectly fun and enjoyable. But it’s a Marvel movie (which we already have more than enough of) that leaned into our nostalgia (which Hollywood is already doing too much of) to earn some huge box office bucks (which it’s already done). And that just bugs me.
If you’re a Spiderman fan, you’re going to have a good time with No Way Home. Is it a masterpiece? You might think so. You’ve probably already decided it is. And that’s fine. But when you take away the cameos and the nostalgic chokehold, what you’re left with is a pretty decent superhero movie. I just wish we got something more.
Overall Score: 7/10