I waited a goddamn year for this film.
And I guess really the first thing to say after that is “and it was completely worth it”.
Sony Pictures Animation closes out the studio’s year with a banger of a film that runs us through a plethora of origin stories that doesn’t dull the overall experience to be had in the universe of Miles Morales.
And while the universe may involve his world, come the end of the film it is a world of Spider-People.
Bitten by a radioactive spider, teenager Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) suddenly develops mysterious powers that transform him into Spider-Man. He must now use his newfound skills to battle the Kingpin (Liev Schreiber), a hulking madman who can open portals to other dimensions.
I like to think I know enough about Spider-Man’s lore to comprehensively “ooo”, “ahhh” and “guffaw” through all the delicious treats they present on-screen, but even I wasn’t really ready for how far they would take it and what an experience it would be.
It’s safe to say the audience don’t really care for the origin any more, especially in cases like Spider-Man where he’s had 3 reboots cinematically. But Into The Spider-Verse is going to take you on multiple origins and it’s going to be GLORIOUS.
Thrusting us into a deliciously realised world with a style that is very much its own (as intended by Producers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller), we join Miles, played by Shameik Moore, as he becomes the Spider-Man. Vibrant neons and silhouetted 3D shaders bounce around as much as he does, with comic panels and speech bubbles playfully jumping up on the screen from time-to-time, as Miles comes to grips with his responsibility in a feature that should clean out the awards next year with its beautiful scenes and styling.
Played by Jake Johnson, Peter Parker reluctantly takes Miles under his webbing and decides to teach him the ways of great power and great responsibility. Playing off like a “Mr. Miyagi if Mr. Miyagi didn’t know anything“, Parker throws Miles through the perils of becoming our ultimate web-slinger.
And then enter…wowwww…Spider-People.
Increasing the scope of the team dynamic from there, universes collide as Spider-Man, Spider-Man and Spider-People work to save the day from Kingpin and his cadre of evil-doers.
Melodiously mixing in a phenomenal soundtrack with a script that echoes the constant, humorous beats of Lord and Miller’s previous works, Into The Spider-Verse may be the first film for the character that reaches past his famous mantra and makes them more than that. Moore’s Miles is wildly relatable, echoing the anxiety of a person who discovers they’re Spider-Man, while touching on an idea of Stan Lee‘s that “a person who helps others simply because it should or must be done, and because it is the right thing to do, is indeed without a doubt, a real superhero.”
And that leap of faith is effortlessly rewarded in this amazing and spectacular film.
Miles Morales bursts on to the screen, bringing the rest of the Spider-Verse with him in a story that could quite possibly be the best of Spidey yet.
And I absolutely cannot wait to see more.
There’s a mid-credits AND end-credits scene, so make sure you hang around!