Our expectations of the latest incarnation of the web-slinger have been pumped and primed since his cameo in last year’s Captain America: Civil War.  The teenage Spidey/Peter Parker nearly stole the entire film from under the more experienced noses of Robert Downey Junior and Chris Evans, with his youthful exuberance, cheekiness – and inability to cope with his new found super powers.

And now he has a film all to himself.  No pressure on the new Spidey, Brit Tom Holland, then.  And no worries either because, quite simply, this is the must-see film of the summer, with everything you want from an action movie and a superhero movie from the Marvel stable.  With just a wee bit more.  Especially the scene that has nothing to do with superheroes, nothing to do with the action and which provoked gasps of amazement and loud applause from the critics packed into Odeon Leicester Square.  That kind of stunt takes cheek and guts – and this is a film which, like its leading young man, has plenty of both.

This is very much a teenage Spider Man, not the fully grown version most of us are used to from the comics.  So the irreverence hasn’t fully matured yet.  He’s only fifteen and he’s bursting to get an assignment and see some action.  And he eventually gets plenty in his run-ins with the Vulture/Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton).  But teenage boys have other pre-occupations, like the girl he’s taking to the homecoming dance and …. well, just girls, really. Parker also has a best mate who eventually cottons on to his alternative lifestyle and Ned (Jacob Batalon) is a great counterbalance for him, even if it seems like he’ll spill the beans at any moment.  And for Parker, the whole secrecy thing is still crucial – especially when it comes to Aunt May who, as we saw in Captain America Civil War, is the appealing Marisa Tomei.  She’s in for a surprise!

The action is a given, although the showdown with The Vulture is rather CGI heavy, but there’s also some nail biting stuff, especially when some of Parker’s schoolmates are stuck in a lift.  For Marvel fans, there’s the welcome return of Jon Favreau as Happy, Tony Starke’s head of security, who only cracks a smile once.  Iron Man’s there too and so is Cap.

This is the time of year when you want to come out of the cinema with a big smile on your face, buzzing from a film with humour, excitement and good old fashioned fun.  You get the lot with Spiderman:Homecoming.  Just plonk yourself in a good seat, settle back and enjoy a breathtaking ride peppered with laughs.  It may be over two hours long, but it never feels like it and you won’t look at your watch once!


Director: Jon Watts

Writer: Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley, Jon Watts, Christopher 

Ford, Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.

Stars: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Marisa Tomei, Robert Downey Jnr 

and Jon Favreau.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is out on the 5th of July.