Friday, May 24, 2024

Finally some pandemic box office life that proves movies in theaters are not dead. In two weeks alone, “No Way Home” is poised to make more than $1 billion and become the highest-grossing film of 2021 after two Marvel entries this year, “Eternals” and “Black Widow,” struggled. This latest chapter for the third Spider-Man (Tom Holland) weaves in the villains and Spideys from earlier web spins, which all happens after Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) tries to help weave a spell to have folks forget he was outed as Peter Parker in “Far From Home” and got a nasty rap. That way MJ (Zendaya) can get into MIT without being tarnished by his rep. The Spiderverse-mixing mayhem boasts an all-star cast with Willem Dafoe back as the Goblin, Jamie Foxx as the electric Max Dillon, Thomas Haden Church (so raffish in “Sideways”) as Sandman, Marisa Tomei as Aunt May and J.K. Simmons (“Being the Ricardos,” “Whiplash”) as the brassy J. Jonah Jameson. It’s a pretty well-woven mashup that never stops spinning; it’s only spider-bite deep and good senseless fun.

Tom Meek is a writer living in Cambridge. His reviews, essays, short stories and articles have appeared in WBUR’s The ARTery, The Boston Phoenix, The Boston Globe, The Rumpus, The Charleston City Paper and SLAB literary journal. Tom is also a member of the Boston Society of Film Critics and rides his bike everywhere.