“Spider-Man: No Way Home” delivers the goods

Tom Holland finally develops his character to its full extent


Christian Lo, Film Critic

“Spider-Man: No Way Home” is the third installment of director Jon Watts’s Spider-Man trilogy, and it deals with Peter Parker’s internal struggles as he is forced to face the grave consequences of his actions.

This movie was highly anticipated by audiences around the world, and it definitely delivered, with the movie currently sitting as the sixth highest grossing film of all time. Of course, I was extremely excited to watch this movie as a huge Spider-Man fan, but I had my reservations. I liked the other two Spider-Man films by Watts, but I felt that something was missing from Tom Holland’s Spider-Man.

After watching the movie in theaters, I realized what was missing: the element of darkness. The other two films were good, but I never felt truly connected to the personal struggles of Spider-Man as a character. However, this film did something the last two films didn’t: it put Spider-Man through the ringer. The premise of the film is that Peter Parker’s identity is revealed, and he and the people he loves are forced to deal with the significant implications of being a public superhero. In an attempt to protect the people he loves and improve their lives, he makes a deal with Sorcerer Doctor Strange to make everyone forget his identity. The protagonist is forced to discover what it means to be a true hero, and learns the cost of heroism through great loss.

Like most Marvel films, the action was quite the spectacle to watch. The way that fighting characters interact with the environment was extremely interesting, and the special effects used in this film were top-notch. The most notable instance of visual eye candy was a fight between Spider-Man and Doctor Strange in the mirror dimension, a realm where all laws of physics are abandoned. This really allowed the producers to go crazy with the visuals, creating one of the most fun action scenes I have seen in a while.

“No Way Home” excelled in more than just the action, though. An integral part of the movie deals with the idea of the multiverse, which allows Spider-Man villains from previous movies (and different universes) to enter into the world of Tom Holland’s Peter Parker. The superstar cast of Holland, Willem Defoe, Zendaya, Will Smith and Alfred Molina seemed like a disappointment waiting to happen, as the last thing I wanted from this film was fan service without substantial additions to the plot.

Upon watching the movie, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that all of the villains from the previous Spider-Man films got lots of screen time and played major roles in the story. The amount of effort Jon Watts and his team put into the creation of this story was apparent, and it was refreshing to watch such a well-crafted movie.

The best part is undoubtedly the phenomenal performances of this superstar cast. Defoe steals the show with his trademark facial expressions and captivates audiences with some top-notch acting. Molina’s acting is also excellent, and he embodies Doctor Octopus’s conflicted character perfectly, which is extremely impressive given that it has been over a decade since Molina played the role. Out of all of his Spider-Man movies, I believe that this is Holland’s best performance. The way he conveys the pain and suffering of his character to the audience is excellent, and it transported me straight to my memories of the Ultimate Spider-Man comics I grew up reading.

Considering the sheer scale and complexity of “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” this film massively exceeded my expectations and is easily one of the most enjoyable films I have watched. It has everything a person could ever want from a superhero film: stunning action, compelling characters and a good plot. While it may lend itself to a slow start and although some of the characters stay underdeveloped, “No Way Home” is an action-packed, entertaining movie.

Make sure you watch some of the other Spidey films before you see this one so that you can have the best experience possible watching this movie. If you want to have fun watching something this week, No Way Home is the movie for you.

My letter grade: A-