Spider-Man: Homecoming – DeaconsDen Review

After a 3 year absence Spidey is back on the big screen in his own film. Spider-Man: Homecoming is the second reboot of the cinematic Spider-Man and his first solo film as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The last time we saw our friendly, neighborhood webhead, was last year's Captain America: Civil War. There we were introduced to this version of the character played by Tom Holland. Although brief, the character and actor were certainly highlights for that film and now we travel to Queens, NY to see the next chapter of Peter Parker's superhero career.

Although Spider-Man: Homecoming takes place early in Peter's time as Spider-Man, it is not covering old ground with his origin. We've gotten that twice with both Sam Raimi's 2002 "Spider-Man" and 2012's "The Amazing Spider-Man" directed by Marc Webb. Here we get a film about Peter learning to be a hero. He's young, excited and eager to help people. He's not that good at it either. He makes mistakes. A few mistakes actually. Other than being enlisted by Tony Stark to take on Captain America, he hasn't had much experience in crime fighting. That's all soon to change however.

Spider-Man: Homecoming really feels like an issue of the 1960s comic series (obviously set in the here and now). It's exuberant and funny. Thrilling and inspiring. I really associate it best with the animated series "The Spectacular Spider-Man." That show (which I wrote about), gave a split focus to Spider-Man and Peter Parker. Specifically the impact being Spider-Man has on Peter's life at home and school. This film feels most like that. In order for that to work, you have to have a great cast and we certainly get that here.

We have a group of characters that present a believable experience in high school. They go about their lives in the way that high schoolers would. I found it quite sincere. Also I want to give credit to superhero veteran Michael Keaton who gives a very human performance as Vulture. There's a moment in the film between him and Peter that matches any of the big scale set pieces in terms of suspense.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is a homecoming indeed. Spidey is back in the overall Marvel film fold with an action packed but also very human adventure where a young man simply wants to prove his worth.

Final Rating (3/4)

47 Meters Down – DeaconsDen Brief Review

Two sisters (Mandy Moore and Claire Holt), on vacation in Mexico, go cage diving to see sharks up close and personal. The cable breaks on the cage which sends them to the ocean floor. Now the two young women must find a way to escape with their air supplies dwindling and great white sharks surrounding them.

47 Meters Down is the second shark related survival horror film in as many years. Last year we had the thriller The Shallows which was one of my top 5 films. This film is directed by Johannes Roberts and written by Roberts and Ernest Riera.

Like The Shallows, 47 Meters Down is another claustrophobic survival thriller. The film’s weakness however comes from the fact that you really don’t sense any fear or dread. The two main leads do admirable jobs, but it’s simply a case of seeing and not experiencing. That’s not to say it doesn’t have any charm and it was entertaining. I just don’t feel it took full advantage of its scenario.

If you are sensitive to the sort of bloody nature that would be in a shark attack film, this is not quite as visceral as The Shallows or even Jaws. Also the film clocks in under 90 minutes so it does move at a brisk pace and wastes no time getting in the water.

My biggest issue comes with the film’s 3rd act. A particular element is introduced but once it’s  followed up on, I wish it hadn’t because I loved everything that came before it. This may or may not bother some, but it did for me.

47 Meters Down is an entertaining enough survivor film, its just not that thrilling. It doesn’t take full advantage of its premise and therefore the illusion of danger isn’t as prevalent and the viewer simply feels like a spectator despite being competently made.

Final Rating (2.0/4.0)