Movie review: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

10 Dec 2018 / 10:47 H.

FIRST of all, the soundtrack to this animated Marvel movie is a joy, and Miles Morales is probably the Spider-Man with the best taste in music.

On top of Post Malone and Swae Lee’s Sunflower and What’s Up Danger by Blackway and Black Caviar – the full soundtrack album release is slated for Dec 14 – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse also features unofficial new music from Vince Staples, and even has some Notorious B.I.G thrown in.

As most Marvel stories tend to be, this superhero film also has a heartwarming message tailored to today’s reality, but with six different versions of your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man instead.

Each version of the beloved character, originally created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, is from a different parallel dimension sharing a multiverse, or rather, a Spider-verse.

Lee, who passed away in early November, makes a bittersweet posthumous cameo as the person who Miles (voiced by Shameik Moore) gets his first Spider-Man outfit from.

Focusing on the 2011 Marvel Comic character Miles as Spider-Man, the young Afro-Latino superhero is joined by decades-aged Peter Parker from the future, Spider-Woman Gwen Stacy, Peni Parker and her cool armour robot, melodramatic Spider-Man Noir, and the comical Spider-Ham.

Miles inadvertently gets bitten by a genetically-altered spider at an abandoned underground area when his Uncle Aaron (Mahershala Ali) leads him to the hidden spot to clear his mind, by spraying graffiti.

Aaron and Miles’ police officer dad Jefferson (Brian Tyree Henry) share a shaky relationship as estranged brothers. But the Brooklyn Visions Academy student, who is still struggling with his transfer to the ‘elitist’ school, finds it easier to talk to his uncle than his dad.

Meanwhile, mysterious earthquakes are happening around the city, causing odd structures comprising elements fused from different dimensions to pop up.

They include the appearances of our superheroes in Miles’ world. Naturally, an evil villain – revealed to be the menacing Kingpin (Liev Schreiber) – is behind the weird occurrences, driven by a misguided vendetta.

Miles first meets the older Peter Parker (Jake Johnson), hoping that the experienced but frayed Spider-Man would not only help save the world from imploding, but also help him hone his newfound abilities.

Gwen Stacy (Hailee Steinfeld) joins the Spidey-mix after saving the duo from danger.

Through their tingling Spidey-senses, Miles and the two then finds Peni Parker (Kimiko Glenn), Spider-Man Noir (Nicholas Cage), and Peter Porker a.k.a Spider-Ham (John Mulaney), at the secret lair of current world’s recently-deceased Peter Parker.

The visuals are stunning, and I like how the three directors went with incorporating comicbook artistic styles into the movie. It’s like watching a comic book brought to life, but with the added depth of a feature film.

Miles’ experience of finding himself through becoming Spider-Man also pulls you in with the relatability factor – minus the life-altering spider bite, of course.

This is certainly a kick-ass movie, coupled with brilliant music that I would gladly watch again. Make sure to stay till the end of the credits!

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