The Marvel Cinematic Universe has been a dominating force for entertainment this past year, shifting over into the television sphere with their recent shows available on the Disney+ streaming service. Many of these, such as WandaVision and Loki, have tackled the theme of the multiverse – a concept first opened up during Spider-Man’s second feature-length adventure Spider-Man: Far from Home, which also concluded phase three of the MCU and wrapped up the events seen in Avengers: Endgame. However, I don’t think anyone was fully prepared for the massive standout hit that would be the web-slinger’s third major on-screen appearance – maybe fifth or sixth if you count his involvement in the MCU overall – and its gaming changing effect on future events to come. I am, of course, talking about Spider-Man: No Way Home, which was released in theaters earlier this past weekend.
Directly following the events of Far from Home, Peter’s identity was just revealed to the entire world thanks to a last-ditch effort courtesy of Mysterio. Now, quite literally America’s most wanted, he, his best friend Ned, and his just recently acquired girlfriend Michelle “MJ” Jones find their college plans and possible futures in jeopardy due to their connection with our favorite wall-crawling hero. Aiming to fix things, Peter pays a visit to the illustrious Dr. Strange, hoping that his affinity for magic can save the day. And everything could’ve gone smoothly, until Peter accidentally disrupts Strange’s spell casting, greatly altering its effectiveness in the process. Now villains from all across different dimensions are showing up in their universe searching for Peter Parker, and it’s up to Spider-Man to make things right again before the fabric of all reality crumbles before them.
This movie is an absolute must-see for major fans of the Spider-Man franchise, especially those who are fond of the Tobey Maguire early 2000s movie trilogy, as well as the two film Andrew Garfield “Amazing Spider-Man” series that proceeded his official introduction into the MCU. By utilizing the current exploration of the multiverse idea, this film allows Marvel Studios access to a whole flurry of other characters – no matter who currently holds the rights to them – in a way that doesn’t take much explaining to make sense as to why they have or haven’t appeared yet. Seeing the return of familiar enemies, such as Alfred Molina’s Dr. Otto Octavius (Dr. Ock), and William Dafoe’s Norman Osborn (Green Goblin), from the original film franchise facing off against Tom Holland’s Spider-Man alongside Jamie Foxx’s Max Dillon (Electro), and Rhys Ifans’ Dr. Curt Conners (Lizard), from the Garfield franchise on screen together makes for one epic viewing experience that not many studios have successfully pulled off. And, without spoiling too much – though you’ve probably already speculated it by now – they’re not the only special appearances throughout the movie.
No Way Home is also filled with several easter eggs and “blink and you’ll miss it” details that will have fans scrambling back to the theaters for second and third rewatches, some of which tie into the overarching storyline of the MCU entirely. Audience members will certainly want to make sure to catch both the mid-credits and post-credits scenes, the latter being a trailer for the next major MCU release: Dr. Strange and the Multiverse of Madness. As for the former…let’s just say Peter Parker’s story is nowhere near over.
Rating: 5/5 Stars