The latest Spider-Man film fully embraces its comic book roots to breathe new life into the genre in the most original Superhero film since Deadpool
UK Release Date: December 12, 2018
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a welcome addition to the ever-growing collection of Spider-Man films that have been released in the last 16 years.
Since 2002 there have been seven films about everyone's favourite friendly neighbourhood Superhero.
However, this latest Spider-Man movie pulls out all the stops to make it essential viewing for any comic book movie fan.
So without any further ado, here are the six main reasons why Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is kick up the backside for the Superhero genre:
Focus on new main character
Spider-Verse tells the story of Miles Morales, a mixed race teenager who doesn't quite fit in at his new school.
In typical Spider-Man fashion, he's bitten by a radioactive spider and begins to develop strange powers, we've seen this bit before.
However, what works so well is taking the focus away from Peter Parker, although he is a major character in Spider-Verse.
Giving Miles Morales the limelight is an inspired choice and adds a whole new spin on the Spider-Man stories we've seen so far, giving us the chance to learn about Miles, his family and his motivations for the first time, as well as giving the character of Spider-Man, a younger and fresher feel.
Many films and TV shows have played with the idea of multiple universes and alternate dimensions over the years, with varying degrees of success.
But it's something that really brings out the best in this film with it allowing for the inclusion of some lesser-known Spider-People from all corners of Marvel's comic book kingdom.
As the trailers have shown, this film boasts an impressive entourage of new characters, never-before-seen in film, all with their own unique charms and quirks.
We have the usual Spider-Man (aka. Peter Parker), but he's older and wearier than any portrayal we've seen before.
But added to that are the brilliant inclusions of:
Gwen Stacey as Spider-Gwen, who Miles meets at his new school. Penni Parker, an anime character from a futuristic Tokyo. Spider-Man Noir, an entirely black-and-white Spider-Man pulled straight out of a 1930s detective crime story. And finally, Spider-Ham, a cartoon pig version of Spider-Man, complete with his own brilliant alter-ego, Peter Porker.
Amazing Animation Style
The first thing that hits you as a viewer is the superb animation. It's an eye-catching blend of crisp and modern 3D computer animation and a gorgeous 2D sheen that makes each frame bounce off the screen like a page in a comic book.
Couple that with comic book staples like captions and speech-bubbles that appear on screen to mirror the action and you've got a film similar in style to Edgar Wright's superb adaptation of Scott Pilgrim vs The World.
The big-bad-boss-battle which all Superhero movies must have is quite similar to others we've seen as the fate of New York is put at risk once again thanks to a new world-ending super weapon. But Spider-Verse's animation style gives the film's all-action climax a wondrous look that is hard to top.
It's commonly believed that a film is only as good as its antagonists and that's definitely the case in Spider-Verse.
The main big-bad of the film is Wilson Fisk (aka. Kingpin), who's already large frame has been exaggerated yet further in this adaptation, but it works oh so well, making him an imposing villain throughout the film.
He's not the only foe that Miles and co. have to face though and there are a plethora of well-known Spider-Villains who all make an appearance. But rather than feeling overcrowded as other films have done in the past (looking at you Spider-Man 3 and Amazing Spider-Man 2), their use as Fisk's henchmen works brilliantly as they aren't left fighting for screen time.
It's no surprise that a film written and produced by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (21 Jump Street and the Lego Movie) is filled with plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, charming wit and its fair share of meta humour. It makes for a film much akin to Deadpool, but much less on the lewd side.
Don't get me wrong though, while there are moments of joyous laughter to be had, the film aces the tonal shift as it moves into its third act as tragedy befalls young Miles, just as it does with Peter Parker's Spider-Man.
The film, of course, features your standard orchestral score but the real bite of the soundtrack comes from the use of actual songs, some written specifically for this film. They're used to punctuate crucial moments in the movie and add a whole new level of bad-assery to what you're watching, particularly as the third act gets underway.
And there we have it. If you've not had the chance to watch it yet, get yourselves to the cinema!
If you have seen the film, what did you make of it? Let us know in the comments below.