Like Homecoming, this sequel benefits from lower stakes than most MCU movies. And, like the previous Spider-Man, this mostly remains grounded in Parker’s teen life. So it’s among the better MCU films, in that sense.
So, once again, this movie is concerned with Peter Parker’s teen life a lot of the time and that makes the whole thing a lot more grounded in some kind of recognizable reality than the other “Phase 3” MCU movies, which are basically in Star Wars territory.
At first, it appears that the stakes have been increased rather a lot. And one of the two biggest problems with the film – which is more standalone than most MCU films but which is still part of the – is that no other Avengers are available to help. Fortunately, that is not what’s going on. (Though the lack of other Avengers still remains a fairly massive plot hole.) Unfortunately, the real story is a little preposterous, and you really have to suspend your disbelief with how Mysterio operates. (Like these drones control the wind too? Really?) It’s hardly the stupidest storyline they’ve come up with but it does feel, somehow, harder to believe than most of the things Tony Stark has had created. (Though the reason Myserio exists is pretty good.0
But Gyllenhaal is pretty great. (Even though it makes no sense that nobody at SHIELD recognizes him.) And much about what worked in the first one of these reboots still works in this one. I laughed a fair amount and I found that the whole thing worked more than it didn’t.
Like basically every MCU, it’s too damn long. But it’s still better than most of the MCU movies as it’s just a super hero movie, not part of some massive galaxy-spanning story with too many characters and too many moving parts (and too many jokes per destroyed city).