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Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Movie Review: “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”

Cole Montag
Miguel O’Hara’s logo in pixel art

Both audiences and critics were stunned in 2018 by the latest film in Marvel’s repertoire and their first animated film to hit theaters, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Currently, at 97% on the Tomatometer and 94% on the Audience Score, it is the most recommended Marvel film by critics and one of the highest-rated Marvel films by audiences (only topped by Shang-Chi and the latter Tom Holland Spider-Man films).

It was the catalyst for stylized animation in the industry, leading to further projects such as Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and TMNT: Mutant Mayhem to gain praise for doing their own thing. Needless to say, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the great minds behind the film, created a masterpiece loved by most. It gained two confirmed sequels, one being Across the Spider-Verse, the film being reviewed today.

ATSV displayed realistic and emotional progressions of Miles’ (Shameik Moore) story, introduced many unique characters, and gave fan favorites like Peter B. Parker (Jake Johnson) and Gwen Stacy (Hailee Steinfeld) faithful and important roles.

Animation-wise, it improved from its prequel, adapting classic comic-book styles and giving every character their own unique feel. As well, the score is an underappreciated aspect of both movies that could only have been done by Daniel Pemberton, along with producer Metro Boomin’s soundtracks.

To elaborate on the new characters, we get plenty of new characters from the comics, such as the “villain of the week” The Spot (Jason Schwartzman), Spider-Man 2099 (Oscar Isaac), Pavitr Prabhakar (Karan Soni), and Spider-Punk (Daniel Kaluuya). They also represent their diverse cultures and beliefs quite faithfully, from Indians praising Mumbattan and its resident Spider-Man for their beautiful renditions of India’s atmosphere and culture to the accurate portrayal of Spider-Punk’s belief in anarchism.

Without going into spoilers, it created a masterful story utilizing the concept of the Multiverse proving essential to the story, and improving the movie as a whole. While it doesn’t seem like much, it has been repeatedly used (and failed) by the MCU and DC alike in many films, including but not limited to 2022s Multiverse of Madness and this year’s flopped The Flash. It also served as a prime example of how to include cameos, from blink-and-you-miss-it moments only known to hardcore fans to important characters throughout the two-hour and 20-minute runtime.

One last thing I did not touch upon though, was how every rewatch leads to new discoveries. I’ve rewatched the film a few times and listened to hours of video essays, and I still feel like I am learning something about the film’s message or its animation every single time I view the content surrounding it.

In short, this movie combines creative cinematography and graphics, a talented cast playing amazing and diverse characters, music that couldn’t have been done better if Pemberton tried, and references that satisfy die-hard fans like myself.  This is a movie that will stand the test of time, just like its predecessor, and will only improve when Beyond the Spider-Verse releases in the future.

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About the Contributor
Cole Montag
Cole Montag, Staff Writer
Hello there, friendly neighborhood pixel artist Cole Montag reporting to you! This year is a lot of firsts for me, especially for the school and the Tribe but I'm glad to be here nonetheless. Most of the time, you'll see me making art, gaming, and helping run the Chiefs ESports team (probably dealing with homework too, but I don't care for that). I'll usually write on pop culture and media so stay tuned for movie or game reviews. I've got nothing left to say, so if you want to see more from me, check out my articles or my pixel art on Instagram!

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