Movie Review: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

While the Marvel Cinematic Universe is dominating the box office, they haven’t completely abandoned other stories. Deadpool, Venom, and the X-Men are still getting their own movies, for better or worse, but this month’s big offering is the Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

This isn’t the story of Peter Parker, though. This is the story of Miles Morales, the “Black Spider-Man” (not to be confused with Spider-Man 3) who was introduced in the comics in an alternate universe in 2011—and it’s the story of Peter Parker…and Gwen Stacy…and a 1930s private eye…and a small Japanese girl with a spider robot…and a cartoon pig.

It makes sense in context.

Actually, it more than makes sense. This is an excellent movie—easily competing with Spider-Man: Homecoming as the best Spider-Man movie.

My rating: 5 out of 5.

If you’ve seen the trailer, you probably understand the premise. A bunch of alternate versions of Spider-Man from parallel universes get tossed together and have to save the space-time continuum from being ripped apart. Honestly, I wish some of the alternates could have had a bit more development, but the main ones were handled really well, and it was a lot of fun to see them all working together.

But of course, the main plot is the origin story of Miles as his own universe’s Spider-Man as he struggles with family, training, and being thrown in the deep end of saving the world long before he’s ready. That also worked really well. One of the weaknesses of superhero reboots is that you often have to tell the origin story all over again—something Marvel wisely skipped in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Everyone knows Peter Parker’s origin story. Rehash it too many times (often more than once is too much), and it starts to read like bad fanfiction. But Miles Morales is a new character with a life of his own who has a very different path to becoming Spider-Man and ultimately becomes a very different Spider-Man, full stop. That means we get a fresh new take on a familiar story, and it works brilliantly. And it has a few fun Deadpool-esque meta-jokes along the way. And the comic book-style CGI was really clever, too. I really enjoyed this movie, and I highly recommend it for Marvel fans.

About Alex R. Howe

I'm a full-time astrophysicist and a part-time science fiction writer.
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