Sequels can be tricky, especially when following the success or failure of the preceding film, but Sony’s highly anticipated “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” brings about a deep, high-stakes story that some would say rivals its predecessor.
The sequel to “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” continues to give the audience a thrill ride.
The film follows Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) a few months after the events of “Into the Spider-Verse,” where he continues to be Brooklyn’s one and only Spider-Man.
As fans of the film may already know, Sony’s partnering with Marvel on the Miles Morales films allowed for continued exploration of the Multiverse, first introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) films in 2016’s “Doctor Strange.”
“Into the Spider-Verse,” as fans recall, introduced Miles as Spider-Man following the death of his universe’s Peter Parker (Chris Pine). When Kingpin’s (Liev Schrieber) collider opens portals to alternate dimensions, Miles’s universe is infiltrated by alternate Spider-people. The film followed Miles and a team of these alternates in their attempts to bring down Kingpin and return to their universes.
This is where “Across the Spider-Verse” begins.
Miles is having a challenging time trying to balance his life as a normal teenager while keeping his identity as Spider-Man under wraps from his family. After reuniting with his old friend Gwen Stacy (Hailey Steinfeld), he embarks on a journey that reveals a top-secret agency of Spider-people from multiple universes: the Spider-Society.
When The Spot (Jason Schwartzman) begins opening portals across Spider-Verses to bring down all Spider-people once and for all, secrets are unveiled that will change not only Miles’s life but the lives of all Spider-people in existence.
Unlike the light and humorous story seen in “Into the Spider-Verse,” the new film takes on a darker, more grown-up tone.
It is intense, deep and requires the viewer’s full attention, as everything in the movie has importance.
The cast provides an immersive experience that makes the two-hour and twenty-minute film feel like five minutes, both familiar and new characters alike.
The return of Peter B. Parker (Jake Johnson) and Gwen Stacy provides a refreshing, familiar feeling for viewers of the film, yet the new characters are a sight to behold.
Daniel Kaluuya’s Hobie Brown and Oscar Issac’s Miguel O’Hara steal the show, finding their places flawlessly with the other characters and providing an out-of-this-world voice acting experience that moves the story with intensity and beauty.
The animation also brings this experience.
Sony Pictures Animation have created a masterpiece with their style of animation. While the first film was animated in a jerky yet smooth video game-like style, “Across the Spider-Verse” holds so much more. Each Spider-verse is animated differently to show their stark differences.
Viewers will find Gwen Stacy’s moody, color-changing universe a sight to behold, and the look of Hobie’s pop art universe is a breath of fresh air and fun, comparable to the paintings of famous pop artist Roy Lichtenstein.
The film overall is exactly what it should be: Intense, thrilling and absolutely stunning in the way of visuals, characterization and acting.
Written by Jasmine Hightower, Entertainment Editor. Photo credit to Sony Pictures Entertainment.