Insanely entertaining introduction to a new universe with Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse

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Insanely entertaining introduction to a new universe with Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse

Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and Miles Morales star in Sony Pictures'

Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and Miles Morales star in Sony Pictures' "Into the Spiderverse."

Photo courtesy of imdb.com

Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and Miles Morales star in Sony Pictures' "Into the Spiderverse."

Photo courtesy of imdb.com

Photo courtesy of imdb.com

Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and Miles Morales star in Sony Pictures' "Into the Spiderverse."

By Dean Costalas, Sports Editor

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The holiday season is typically seen as a time where movie lovers and the average family alike get to go to the theater and see a slew of movies that have been released in time for the winter vacation.

This year was no different, with the arrival of the fresh and insanely entertaining “Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse.”

First, the film comes at an odd time for Sony Pictures. They are currently sharing the rights to Spider-Man and his properties with Marvel Studios, and their last movie, “Venom,” was met with harsh critic reviews but received massive box office success, finishing as one of the top 20 movies of all time with its $800 million gross.

Realistically, “Into the Spiderverse” was a make-or-break film for Sony executives as to whether the studio could milk any more money out of one of the highest grossing movie franchises in history. They were looking for a hit, and, lucky for them, this movie is a Mike Tyson uppercut straight to the jaw.

After four years of production, one of the longest for any animated movie ever, “Spiderverse” released on December 14th to a tidal wave of critical acclaim. For the first two weeks, it toted a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes with 47 reviews in, eventually settling down to a still impressive 97% (the highest of any Spider-Man movie ever).

And, may I say, this movie earned it.

It did so many things right, while managing to avoid the normal hiccups seen in superhero origin stories.

The most notable thing that separates this film from, well, every other movie ever made is the style of animation: setting a serene world where a comic book has practically come to life. Coloration consists of dots in a painstakingly beautiful attempt to replicate the coloring techniques of old comics from the 60’s and 70’s, with sketch lines appearing here or there to give it an even more hand drawn feel, not to mention the thought bubbles that occasionally pop up in the corners of the screen to give exposition.

The soundtrack has also garnered plenty of praise, as it has resulted in collaborations and hits from some of the best artists of today including Post Malone, Juice WRLD, XXXTentacion and Swae Lee to name a few.

The style of the film is something completely different too, an emotional yet intense movie that has the shot selection of an action movie epic: up close, innovative, and fluid. For an animated feature film, that aspect is above and beyond anything an audience has seen before with (MINOR SPOILER ALERT) two on-screen deaths that leave the audience both shaken and torn.

Certain scenes felt more like an R-rated action thriller (if you watch the movie, any scene featuring the Prowler will definitely give you that edge-of-your-seat vibe) than a PG kids movie. Another thing that audiences aren’t used to? A roster of characters that casual moviegoers have never even heard of, including Spider-Gwen (a punk-rocker from a alternate universe), Spider-Man Noir (a black and white detective), Spider-Ham (a pig) and Penny Parker (a 12-year old Japanese American girl from the future).

The only minor flaw, and I do mean minor, in this movie is the balance between these alternate Spider-Men, with certain versions being a touch forced and a touch awkward.

The villains are, for the most part, all familiar names with new and reimagined faces, with Doc Ock, Green Goblin, Scorpion, and the ever intimidating Kingpin all being used as charismatic-yet-sinister driving forces throughout the film.

Miles Morales, an African-Dominican teen growing up in New York, is the protagonist and marks the first time the main character of a Spider-Man movie is someone other than Peter Parker. And “Into the Spiderverse” undoubtedly plays upon the general audience’s lack of knowledge about the character, having an older, washed-up Peter Parker serve as the guiding mentor in the film to help both Miles as well as the audience come to terms with a new world in which we no longer have the conventional Spider-Man figure. But even with the familiarity of our commonly seen hero constantly reminding us of what we thought of the hero before, there is no doubt that this is Miles’ movie, and with that comes a totally new identity and personality to the character of Spider-Man.

With that being said, “Into the Spiderverse” is one of, if not the best movie of 2018, creating a visually stunning movie that redefines one of the most popular characters in history and introduces him to an audience via a stunningly beautiful, gripping, and simply awesome movie.

“Spiderverse” earns an easy A+, and I’d guarantee it as an Oscar-winner for Best Animated Film and a possible Best Film nominee. I can comfortably and confidently give the movie a 9.8/10, and would strongly recommend watching this one in theaters in order to appreciate the obvious effort put into it.

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Insanely entertaining introduction to a new universe with Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse