REVIEW: Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

The new sequel to the hit 2018 film is even more groundbreaking than the original
Oops! Miles Morales, aka Spider-Man has his hands, er, feet, full with The Spot. And that's not all of his problems. (Sony Pictures Animation)

When Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse came out in 2018, you could have been thinking: Why do we need another Spider-Man movie?

After all, the sixth live action Spider-Man movie (Spider-Man:Homecoming) had only come out the year before, and a new one was due the year after that. How many movies with this one character did we need at the same time?

But oh, how wrong we were!

Spidey's getting a snack to go. (Sony Pictures Animation)

First off, the main Spider-Man of Spider-Verse was not Peter Parker, the central character of the other Marvel movies. This was Miles Morales, a young biracial teenager from Brooklyn.

Secondly, this film was full of not one, but many Spider-People. Peter Parker was there, helping out. But so was Gwen Stacy (Spider-Woman). And a character named Peter Porker (a.k.a. Spider-Pig), and, well, you get the idea ... When they said it was a 'Spider-Verse', they meant it!

And finally, there was the look of the movie. Not only was it animated, but there had never been an animated movie anywhere quite like it. It didn't use hyper realistic, life-like 3D animation. And it wasn't simple cartoon animation either. It looked like a comic book whose pages had simply started to move on their own. It was inventive and strange and just so cool.

The movie was a huge hit, and the stage was set for the sequel. How could they possibly top it?

Across the universe(s)

Miles and his parents have some different views on his future. (Sony Pictures Animation)

Well, after a five-year wait, we finally have our answer. Yay!

For starters, the 'sequel' is not going to be one movie, but two. The first of these films, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, opened last week (the next movie will come in 2024). And we are excited to say that Across is bigger and bolder than even the groundbreaking original was. And in every way.

Miles is still dealing with the feelings of being a bit of a loner. It's not easy being understood when you're a secret superhero who has to juggle school and the wishes of your caring, but demanding parents. He also misses his friend, Gwen, who had to leave his world at the end of the first film.

But, you know, fighting bad guys is pretty cool! What is there to complain about?

Can you make your own choice?

Miles and Gwen reunite, but there's trouble ahead. (Sony Pictures Animation)

Before long, Miles and Gwen are back to hanging out. But this isn't just a simple happy reunion. There's a curious new villain named The Spot to take care of. And then Gwen has stories about how things aren't right across the Spider-Verse.

Events in the first movie have changed the fates of all other Spider-People. And we're not only talking about the seven or so that we met last time. We're talking about hundreds, even thousands of other Spider-Folks, each one from their own universe.

Miles isn't too worried. He just wants to finally be with his friend. And if he gets to meet even more Spider-People—ones who understand what it's like to have your life changed after being bitten by a radioactive spider—then that sounds awesome to him!

But he soon discovers that not only does this problem include him, he is right at the centre of it all.

Imaginarily real

This Spider-Woman is just one of so many versions of the superhero. (Sony Pictures Animation)

Across the Spider-Verse is one amazing film. It is somehow even more impressive to look at, never staying with just one style of animation, but changing things up in imaginative ways to suit each new Spider-Person.

And the variety of these heroes is often hilarious. We're not just talking about different human characters, but spider cats, dinosaurs, horses, even LEGOs!

But here's the funny thing about that. The more strange and weird the movie gets in its approach, the more real it starts to feel. In this movie, there is a Spider-Person who is from India, a punk rocker from England, a character from a futuristic Nueva York, a VR computer programmer, and on and on. Just like the real world, these heroes come in every possible height, strength, and background.

As for where the film goes, we won't give anything away except to say that it ends with a big cliffhanger that we can't wait to see resolved. Who's ready for Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse in 2024?

While we wait for that though, we've got this really excellent second film. Watch the trailer below!

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