Possible spoilers ahead!!
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is the story of Miles Morales (Shameik Moore), a teenager from Brooklyn, New York. The film begins during a period of change for Miles, as he was recently transferred to the competitive Visions Academy, something his parents, Jefferson Davis (Brian Tyree Henry) and Rio Morales (Luna Lauren Velez), are very proud of. However, Miles is struggling to find his place not only at Visions, and he often sneaks out of school to hang out with his uncle Aaron Davis (Mahershala Ali).
It’s during one of these visits that Miles and Aaron tag a tunnel off the NYC subway and Miles is bitten by a radioactive spider. Almost immediately, Miles begins to demonstrate the powers of the Spider-Man. making his school life even more difficult. Then, Miles runs into his universe’s version of Spider-Man, who’s attempting to stop Kingpin (Liev Schreiber) from using the supercollider he built because it could open a black hole.
Once Spider-Man realizes he and Miles are alike, he promises to teach Miles how to use his new powers. But when Spider-Man is severely injured by the Kingpin, Miles promises him he’ll destroy Kingpin’s supercollider and save the multiverse. Luckily he won’t have to do it alone as Spider-People from other dimensions within the Spider-Verse have wound up on Miles’ Earth. including Peter B. Parker (Jake Johnson), Gwen Stacy (Hailee Steinfeld), Spider-Man Noir (Nicolas Cage), Spider-Ham (John Mulaney) and Peni Parker (Kimiko Glenn)
I know it took me a few months to review “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” but there were just so many movies out of the time I had to pick and choose which films to see in the theater. Now I’m kicking myself, because Into the Spider-Verse is one of the best superhero movies I’ve seen, and seeing in on the big screen must have been quite an experience.
Into the Spider-verse provides a fresh new spin on the Spider-Man mythos. For one thing, we finally get to see Miles Morales in a movie, proving once and for all that Spidey can someone other than Peter Parker. But speaking of Peter, we also get to see that an adult Peter Parker can work in a movie. Hopefully, the MCU takes the hint and kept going with Tom Holland for the next decade.
But Into the Spider-Verse is not just about Spider-Man. This is a movie about Miles Morales wrestling with how he fits into his world, as both Miles and Spider-Man. It’s also a movie about the good and bad that comes with being a Spider-person. Every variation of Spider-Man we meet has lost something along the way, but it’s how they bounce back from it that really matters. This subplot was quote impactful, even for someone like me who knows the comic books well. This storyline gave Into the Spider-Verse a great deal of heart and helped the movie overcome the superhero origin fatigue.
One of the more unique aspects of Into the Spider-Verse, though, is the movie’s animation style. The film uses 3D animation typical of other recent Sony projects, but it also employs multiple comic book styles and textures. For instance, Spider-Ham is rendered like a 3D version of the classic cartoons, while Spider-Man Noir is completely in 2D black and white and Peni Parker is drawn in an anime style.
Also, instead of inner monologue, the movie uses text boxes to show Miles’ thoughts. Into the Spider-Verse even uses multiple panels here and there. But unlike Ang Lee’s “Hulk,” this time the procedure works. At first, I wasn’t too keen on the animation, but the story is so damn good, after a few minutes I didn’t even notice it anymore.
The only negative thing I can say about “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is that I was left wanting more Spider-Gwen. While she’s in much of the film, in the end, Hailee Steinfeld isn’t given much to work with. I was left wanting to know why she ended up at Miles’ school, and how did she get to the Kingpin’s lab. Oh well, maybe I’ll get more Gwen in the sequel.
Ultimately, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is two-hours of pure fun that will entertain new and old fans alike. This is easily my favorite Spider-Man movie and one that I can watch over and over again. So please Sony, give me more adventures with Miles Morales, Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and friends.
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” score: A