Reviewed by: Raphael Vera
Where did man’s darkside come from? Fall of man to depravity
Why do so many people take on a life of crime?
What does the Bible say about HUMILITY?
Tom Holland … Peter Parker / Spider-Man
Jake Gyllenhaal … Quentin Beck / Mysterio
Samuel L. Jackson … Nick Fury
Cobie Smulders … Maria Hill
Jon Favreau … Happy Hogan
Marisa Tomei … May Parker
Angourie Rice … Betty
Zendaya … Michelle Jones
Numan Acar … Dimitri
Martin Starr … Mr. Harrington
See all »
See all »
Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures
Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and his right hand Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) arrive in a small Mexican town just in time to see a monstrous elemental force of nature appear to continue its devastation of the area. Fortunately, a new superhero arrives to save the day.
Meanwhile, the rest of the world is still reeling from the disappearance and sudden reappearance of half of its population years later once the Avengers defeated Thanos (see “Avengers: Infinity War”-2018 and “Avengers: Endgame”-2019). This includes Peter Parker aka Spider-Man (Tom Holland) who only wants to put his world-saving heroics behind him and go on a school field trip to Europe where he hopes to have the courage to tell MJ he likes her.
However, soon after he arrives in Venice (Italy), Nick Fury confronts him and introduces him to Quentin Beck (Jake Gyllenhaal) who has arrived from an alternate Earth in order to save ours from being consumed by these ‘elementals.’ Peter reluctantly agrees to team up with Beck, now code named ‘Mysterio’ when Fury drops yet another monumental responsibility on his shoulders, namely being entrusted with a gift from the late Tony Stark that comes in the form of an artificial intelligence (AI) placing the entire Stark arsenal now at his command.
Will Peter ever get the chance to tell MJ (Zendaya) how he feels, when he keeps disappearing to fight as Spider-Man? Will Fury ever stop pulling the strings, so Peter feels he has any choice but to help? What will Peter do now that he has the power of Stark’s arsenal in the palm of his hands? And can the team of Spider-Man and Mysterio possibly save the world from monsters that seem to grow exponentially in power with each incarnation?
Violence: Moderate. An early flashback to the deaths caused by Thanos shows people dissolving into ashes. Drones are seen tracking kids in order to kill them, and someone is shot by them and we witness that person become unresponsive as they die. Another character is hit by a train and survives although bruises and some blood is shown. The elementals that come in the forms of fire, water, earth and wind destroy buildings and shower debris on anything in their way, however people are not shown being injured or killed whether by the fire or explosions they cause. Peter has terrifying visions that feature a zombie like Iron Man as well as MJ being tossed from a building.
Comic violence included Peter getting repeatedly hit by the bell in a tower, punching his classmate Flash who likewise gets punched in the groin by a stranger and when Ned gets shot by a tranquilizer dart. The violence may be mostly bloodless, but the frightening imagery and peril is inappropriate for young children.
Language: Moderate. The Lord’s name is taken 6 times (OMG 5x, G*d 1x), but, to the film’s credit, His name is used positively several times as in “God help us all” (2) and “Thank God” (2). Oddly, when Peter mentions Captain Marvel, Nick Fury responds by saying, “Don’t invoke her name.”
Vulgar language is lighter than the majority of superhero films, but did include: “sh**” (1), bull-sh** (1), bit** (2), a** (3), d**k-wad (1), and jerk (2). Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) brings up the subject of Peter previously watching a pay-per-view ‘adult film,’ and someone gets called out for a ‘hook-up.’ Lastly, Peter’s rival for MJ’s affection, Brad, gives him the middle finger.
Sex/Nudity: Mild. Peter is shirtless and about to change when he signals MJ to turn around, which she does, but not without sneaking a glance back at him. Peter is ordered to undress by an agent giving him a stealth costume to wear and a classmate walks in on them when he is in his boxers and assumes the worse. Classmate Betty is in her robe when she calls over Peter’s friend Ned to come on into her hotel room. Lastly, there is some light kissing shown with only one prolonged kiss.
Alcohol use is limited to Beck/Mysterio when at a bar with Peter, who declined because he isn’t yet 21, and a group of malcontents toasting a victory.
False Praise—Beck/Mysterio tells Peter to “never apologize for being the smartest person in the room,” something he admits later he didn’t really believe. How often do we offer faint or even false praise to people in hopes of getting our way? God’s Word warns us of this very thing.
“A man who flatters his neighbor spreads out a net for his feet.” —Proverbs 29:5
Envy—Without giving too much away, there is a whole team of people who feel they have been under-appreciated, wronged even and are envious of another’s wealth, fame and power to the point that they have united to steal that legacy for themselves. The fact that many people will die in the process does not seem to concern them in the slightest. This is the inevitable road one goes down when you let any sin consume you.
“For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.” —James 3:16
Worth—Nick Fury has lost his patience with the 16-year old super hero and reminds him that, “Stark chose you! He made you an Avenger… Maybe Stark was wrong.” Peter has always been humble, which is an admirable and godly trait, but it is his feeling that he is unworthy of his newfound responsibility that hampers him. Holy Scripture attests that we are all unworthy, and we should never forget that. But God’s Word also gives us the hope that amidst life’s trials and through belief in His only begotten son, we may be heirs to Heaven itself. That should encourage us to withstand any obstacle from this world, for we have an infinitely better one that awaits us.
“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” —Romans 8:16-17
Set immediately after the earth-shattering events of “Avengers: End Game,” Peter Parker is trying desperately to reclaim a semblance of his teenage life and plays the brooding, reluctant hero, despite himself. In fact, the focus is so much on Peter Parker that Spider-Man is an almost incidental, although still crucial, part of the film.
This is reminiscent of what Marvel Comics did with Spider-Man when they realized his popularity, and they launched another monthly book titled, “Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man.” This was done in order to focus more on his life separate from the costume. FAR FROM HOME’s focus is clearly on Peter Parker, making its predecessor, “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” a better superhero movie.
Lastly, supporting characters played their roles fine, but some of the teacher’s dialog was so obnoxiously ‘woke’ and silly (“It’s witches!”) that it became easy at times to consider it a B-movie.
“Spider-Man: Far From Home” is a very entertaining and fun movie, despite not carrying the gravitas inherent in most Marvel films. Barring some of the language, this is certainly one of the more family-friendly comic book movies to come out in a while, and I recommend it, as long as you do not expect non-stop action and just accept a trip through life as seen through a superhero teenager’s eyes.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.