My Cultural Diet

356 reviews of movies, TV shows, books, restaurants, etc. My own private Goodreads, Letterboxd, and Yelp all rolled into one (more info here). Ratings are 100% subjective, non-scientific, and subject to change. May contain affiliate links.

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse
This was actually my second viewing; my first was plagued by poor sound issues that made it difficult to engage with the film. Everyone lauds the Spider-Verse movies for their visuals, and rightfully so, but these movies are also a feast for the ears, and not being able to fully enjoy that aspect was a real killjoy. I think the sound issues were fixed this time around; I could finally hear Gwen Stacy’s opening monologue, anyway. Across the Spider-Verse is her film as much as it is Miles Morales’ film, exploring her own tragic arc as a Spider-Person. Visually, this film pushes way beyond its predecessor (e.g., the gorgeous abstraction of Gwen’s scenes with her father, Hobie Brown’s anarchic style, the beautiful fluttering of the plastic sheets over the Alchemax ruins, Miles and Gwen’s upside-down heart-to-heart high above New York), and it’s a testament to the animators that everything remains so fluid and coherent. Across the Spider-Verse doesn’t pack quite the same emotional heft as Into the Spider-Verse (how could it?), though I definitely teared up during Rio Morales’ speech to Miles. Nevertheless, it’s a wonderful middle film and I’m beyond anxious to see Beyond the Spider-Verse next March. (Sidenote: The most enjoyable thing about this particular viewing was hearing all of the protests at the cliffhanger ending from audience members who obviously didn’t know that a third film’s coming. My own kids were pretty gobsmacked, as was the lady sitting behind us. It was glorious.)

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