Posted by: Doc Comics | January 4, 2019

Into The SpiderVerse

A surprise joy of 2018, arguably the Best Superhero Movie of the year and “one of the best superhero features ever made,” the animated feature Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse is an instant classic that offers surprising freshness to the well-known mythos of Marvel’s beloved hero. But it also just may be an essential breath of hopeful optimism needed to revive heroism and offer an antidote to these darkly cynical times. But by golly this beautiful smart movie does so while being amazingly FUN!

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Variety: “In what amounts to yet another high-concept, heavy-meta home run from “The Lego Movie” mavens Phil Lord and Christopher Miller — serving as producers, while directing duties fall to Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman at Sony Pictures Animation — “Spider-Verse” applies the retro look of four-color process printing to its 3D computer-animated characters. The effect is fresh, like a street-art riff on a Roy Lichtenstein print, intricately textured with halftone dots and hand-drawn accents to suggest a vintage comic book come to life. Against this bold visual aesthetic, matched with a pulsing hip-hop score, Lord and co-writer Rodney Rothman (“22 Jump Street”) shift the spotlight from Peter Parker to his successor, Miles Morales.”

Polygon: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse brings the most comic booky of concepts — an infinitely expanding web of parallel earths — to a wide audience without faltering. Explaining six separate Spider-Man origin stories in one movie has no right to be as fun, fresh or seamless as Spider-Verse makes it, a feat accomplished through the use of a slick repeating visual motif, specific character writing and great acting.”

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Vox: “The new animated movie is a sleek and soaring, a wonderful paean to the spirit of Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s legendary webslinger, embodying the relentless hope and optimism of its hero in such a classic way. But it also unearths exhilarating new ground — by way of spectacular deviations from the norm that the Marvel Cinematic universe and live-action filmmaking don’t always allow for — that makes it feel like something tremendously innovative, while still traditionally Spidey.”

The Superhero Movie as Secular Religion, from The New Yorker: “The movie, directed by Peter Ramsey, Bob Persichetti, and Rodney Rothman, is an intrinsically worthy enterprise: it makes up for the franchise’s white-male exclusivity by depicting a Spider-Man of color (Miles Morales, voiced by Shameik Moore), a Spider-Woman (Hailee Steinfeld), and an Asian female version of the character (Kimiko Glenn). And it does so with imagination, following the schema of the comic-book series in which Miles Morales was introduced: the plot line involves parallel universes, so that Peter Parker remains Spider-Man while these new characters can coexist, along with other alternate Spideys, including a Spider-Ham, a superheroic talking pig, voiced by John Mulaney, and a film-noir Spider-Man, borrowed from nineteen-thirties movies and voiced by Nicolas Cage.”

IndyWire: “Just when it seemed like “Infinity War” might be the culmination of a cultural phenomenon, that Stan Lee’s death could symbolize the end of an era, and that “Turn Off the Dark” was always going to be the silliest possible subtitle for a Spider-Man adaptation, along comes a delirious postmodern spectacle to remind us that these movies will exist for as long as people need to see themselves reflected in them. Sometimes, that can feel like a threat. Watching “Into the Spider-Verse,” it’s more like a promise.”

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