Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

2018, PG, 100 min. Directed by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman. Voices by Shameik Moore, Jake Johnson, Hailee Steinfeld, Mahershala Ali, Brian Tyree Henry, Lily Tomlin, Luna Lauren Velez, Zoë Kravitz, John Mulaney, Kimiko Glenn, Nicolas Cage, Kathryn Hahn, Liev Schreiber, Chris Pine.

REVIEWED By Richard Whittaker, Fri., Dec. 14, 2018

Peter Parker is dead. Technically, he's not our Peter Parker, because that's the Peter Parker of Earth-616. This is Peter Parker of Earth-1610 and ... OK, let's back up.

In 2000, Marvel Comics realized that they were getting a little stale, and the continuity for their interlocking universe of titles was unbelievably complex, so they created a parallel line called Ultimate Marvel, rebooting the characters and putting superheroes in as realistic a light as possible. In 2011, the powers that be saw that what was supposed to be contemporary now felt a little dated, and they pulled the trigger and killed off Peter Parker, the original Spider-Man. His successor was no nerdy white orphan from the suburbs, balancing school and a job: Miles Morales was a 13-year-old kid from Brooklyn with an African-American father and a Puerto Rican mother.

If that sounds like comics arcana that audiences don't need to know before watching Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, then yes and no. First, it shows that it's been a different man under the mask. Second, it's that the character has always been bleeding edge. It's always tried to be contemporary and grounded about the struggles of being New York's favorite superhero when you aren't a god or a super-scientist or a war hero. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse remains true to the legacy, and only builds upward.

Just as Sam Raimi's Spider-Man II caught the classic 1960s Spidey, so the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is exactly the Spider-Man movie we need now. The New York of Miles (Moore) is vibrant and splashed with color – some of it from his own graffiti as his ne'er-do-well uncle Aaron (Ali) encourages his creativity as a tagger. That's all to the chagrin of Miles' father Jefferson Davis (Henry), a cop who just wants his son to fulfill his potential. What nobody expects is that his potential is expanded after being bitten by a mutated spider that gives him superpowers: And handily so, since the original Spidey just got beaten to death by the Kingpin (Schreiber). He's busy ripping a hole in the space-time continuum for his own reasons, but fortunately that same rift provides Miles with the allies he needs: the Spider-persons (and in one case, pig) of other dimensions.

Most of the drama comes from Miles trying to live up to the expectations of Peter B. Parker (Johnson adding his patent brand of schlubbiness to the older, tubbier, divorced Peter) and Gwen Stacy, aka Spider-Woman (Steinfeld), aka the cooler, more experienced teen Spidey. Of course, cramming six Spideys into one film doesn't allow for too much character development, so the remaining three (Glenn as mech-assisted Peni Parker, Mulaney as the Looney Tunes-esque Spider-Ham, and Cage continuing his hot streak as Thirties throwback Spider-Man Noir) are mainly around for excellent comic relief.

Throw in the family drama, and this could seem overloaded. But directors Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman have shepherded an extraordinary take on the Marvel universe that's gritty and lush, shadowy and colorful, epic and intimate – kind of like Miles Morales' NYC. The trio build in so many glorious details that there's never a lull or dull moment, and the rapid-fire script keeps up with the raw visual ingenuity. They also know and embrace the source material: It's not just in deep-cut nods that fans of the comic will get (if you think that's a Bill Sienkiewicz take on Kingpin, you're absolutely right), but in the way that, when characters lean into close-up, you can see the dots from the old four-color printing presses. It's easy to link this to the kinetic fury of the equally groundbreaking The LEGO Movie (also produced by Chris Miller and co-writer Phil Lord), but the end result is closer to one of the modern anime masters (Mirai director Mamoru Hosoda and/or The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl's Masaaki Yuasa leap immediately to mind) in how it mixes the personal and fantastical at breakneck, stunning speed.

It all comes back to the heart of the Spidey story, the old adage that "with great power comes great responsibility." It's tough doing the right thing, and sometimes it's thankless and can come with a lot of pain, but it's still the right thing, and that's why you do it. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse always comes out swinging.

Showtimes

Mon., Jan. 21

12:00, 3:05, 6:40, 9:45

Tue., Jan. 22

3:05, 6:40, 9:45
AFA 12:00

Wed., Jan. 23

12:25, 3:30, 5:05, 8:10, 11:20

Thu., Jan. 24

12:00, 3:05, 6:55, 10:05

Mon., Jan. 21

12:50, 4:50, 7:50, 10:50

Tue., Jan. 22

4:40, 7:45, 10:50
AFA 1:25

Wed., Jan. 23

1:45, 4:45, 7:55, 10:55

Alamo Drafthouse Slaughter Lane

5701 W. Slaughter, 512/861-7060, drafthouse.com/austin/theater/slaughter-lane

Showtimes at this venue are subject to frequent change. Please confirm daily times by phone or website.

Mon., Jan. 21

12:15, 3:25, 6:00, 9:00

Tue., Jan. 22

3:45, 6:25, 9:25
AFA 12:30

Wed., Jan. 23

12:30, 3:45, 6:25, 9:25

Mon., Jan. 21

1:35, 4:35, 7:45, 10:45

Tue., Jan. 22

12:35, 3:35, 6:35, 9:45

Wed., Jan. 23

12:15, 3:05, 6:20, 9:35

Alamo Drafthouse Village

2700 W. Anderson #701, 512/861-7030, www.drafthouse.com/austin/theater/village

Tuesday matinee Baby Day shows (first show of the day) are intended for parents and their children younger than 6. Showtimes at this venue are subject to frequent change. Please confirm daily times by phone or website.

Mon., Jan. 21

12:30, 4:20, 6:00, 9:05

Tue., Jan. 22

3:00, 6:00, 9:05
AFA 12:25

Wed., Jan. 23

11:50am, 2:50, 6:25, 9:30

Thu., Jan. 24

1:15, 4:25

Barton Creek Square (AMC)

2901 South Capital of Texas Hwy, 512/306-1991, www.amctheatres.com

Matinee discounts available before 4pm daily. Bring Your Baby matinees the first Tuesday of every month.

Mon., Jan. 21

CC/DVS 10:40am, 1:20, 4:10, 7:10

Tue., Jan. 22

CC/DVS 10:40am, 1:20, 4:10, 7:10, 10:00

Wed., Jan. 23

CC/DVS 10:40am, 1:20, 4:10, 7:10

Cinemark 20 and XD

N. I-35 & FM 1825, 512/989-8535

Cost for 3-D and XD shows is regular ticket price plus a premium.

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 11:05am, 2:05, 5:05, 8:05, 10:55

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 2:05, 5:05, 8:05, 10:55

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 2:05, 5:05, 8:05, 10:55

Cinemark Cedar Park

1335 E. Whitestone, Cedar Park, 800/326-3264

Call theatre for complete list of movies and showtimes.

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 11:00am, 1:50, 4:50, 7:40, 10:35

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 11:00am, 1:50, 4:50, 7:40, 10:35

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 11:00am, 1:50, 4:50, 7:40, 10:35

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 10:30am, 1:35, 4:45, 7:40, 10:35

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 10:30am, 1:35, 4:45, 7:40, 10:35

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 10:30am, 1:35, 4:45, 7:40, 10:35

Cinemark Round Rock

4401 N. I-35, Round Rock, 800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium. Call theatre for complete March 26-28 showtimes.

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 1:10, 4:10, 7:25, 10:15

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 1:10, 4:10, 7:25, 10:15

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 1:10, 4:10, 7:25, 10:15

Thu., Jan. 24

digital 1:10, 4:10, 7:25, 10:15

Cinemark Southpark Meadows

9900 S. I-35, 800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 1:15, 4:00, 6:45, 9:30

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 1:15, 4:00, 6:45, 9:30

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 1:15, 4:00, 6:45, 9:30

Cinemark Stone Hill Town Center

18820 Hilltop Commercial Dr., 512/251-0938, www.cinemark.com

Mon., Jan. 21

digital 1:00, 4:00, 7:15

Tue., Jan. 22

digital 12:10, 4:00, 7:15

Wed., Jan. 23

digital 12:10, 4:00, 7:15

City Lights Theatre

420 Wolf Ranch Parkway, Georgetown, 512/868-9922

Mon., Jan. 21

1:30, 4:25, 7:15, 9:50

Tue., Jan. 22

1:30, 4:25, 7:15, 9:50

Wed., Jan. 23

1:30, 4:25, 7:15, 9:50

EVO Entertainment

3200 Kyle Crossing, Kyle, 512/523-9009, www.evo-entertainment.com

Mon., Jan. 21

11:15am, 2:05, 4:55, 7:40

Tue., Jan. 22

11:15am, 2:05, 4:55, 7:40

Wed., Jan. 23

11:15am, 2:05, 4:55, 7:40

Flix Brewhouse

2200 S. I-35, Round Rock, 512/244-3549, www.flixbrewhouse.com/round-rock

Mon., Jan. 21

CC 10:30am, 2:00, 5:30, 9:00

Tue., Jan. 22

CC 2:00, 5:30, 9:00

Wed., Jan. 23

CC 2:00, 5:30, 9:00

Thu., Jan. 24

CC 2:00, 5:30, 9:00

Galaxy Highland 10

6700 Middle Fiskville, 512/467-7305, www.galaxytheatres.com

No one under 18 will be allowed in the theatre on Friday or Saturday after 7pm without an adult.

Mon., Jan. 21

CC 12:30, 3:20, 6:20, 9:15

Tue., Jan. 22

CC 12:30, 3:20, 6:20, 9:15

Wed., Jan. 23

CC 12:30, 3:20, 6:20, 9:15

Thu., Jan. 24

CC 12:30, 3:20, 6:20, 9:15

Gateway Theatre

9700 Stonelake, 512/416-5700

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Mon., Jan. 21

CC/DVS 12:25, 4:10, 7:10, 9:55

Tue., Jan. 22

CC/DVS 12:25, 4:10, 7:10, 9:55

Wed., Jan. 23

CC/DVS 12:25, 4:10, 7:10, 9:55

Thu., Jan. 24

CC/DVS 12:25, 4:10, 7:10, 9:55

AMC Lakeline 9

11200 Lakeline Mall Dr., Cedar Park, 512/335-4793

Discounts daily before 6pm.

Mon., Jan. 21

3-D, CC/DVS 5:00
CC/DVS 2:00, 7:45

Tue., Jan. 22

3-D, CC/DVS 5:00
CC/DVS 2:00, 7:45

Wed., Jan. 23

3-D, CC/DVS 5:00
CC/DVS 2:00, 7:45

Metropolitan

901 Little Texas, 512/447-0101

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Mon., Jan. 21

CC/DVS 1:20, 4:05, 6:50, 9:35

Tue., Jan. 22

CC/DVS 1:20, 4:05, 6:50, 9:35

Wed., Jan. 23

CC/DVS 1:20, 4:05, 6:50, 9:35

Thu., Jan. 24

CC/DVS 1:20, 4:05, 6:50, 9:35

Moviehouse & Eatery

8300 N. FM 620, Bldg. B, 512/501-3520, www.themoviehouse.com/trails/

Mon., Jan. 21

12:00, 3:15, 6:00, 10:55

Tue., Jan. 22

12:00, 3:15, 6:00, 10:55

Wed., Jan. 23

12:00, 3:15, 6:00, 10:20

Thu., Jan. 24

12:00, 3:15, 6:00, 10:55

Moviehouse & Eatery - Lantana Place

7415 Southwest Parkway, Building 7, 512/572-0770, www.themoviehouse.com/lantana/

Mon., Jan. 21

10:55am, 2:05, 5:15, 8:00

Tue., Jan. 22

10:55am, 2:05, 5:15, 8:00

Wed., Jan. 23

10:55am, 2:05, 5:15, 8:00

Thu., Jan. 24

10:55am, 2:05, 5:15, 8:00

Schulman Theatres Lost Pines 8

1600 Chestnut St, Bastrop, 512/321-0123, www.schulmantheatres.com

Mon., Jan. 21

9:50am, 12:50, 3:50, 6:55

Tue., Jan. 22

9:50am, 12:50, 3:50, 6:55

Wed., Jan. 23

9:50am, 12:50, 3:50, 6:55

Sky Cinemas

13201 US-290, 512/457-0700, www.skycinemas.com

Mon., Jan. 21

11:00am, 1:20, 4:00, 6:15

Tue., Jan. 22

2:20, 4:50, 6:05

Wed., Jan. 23

11:45am, 2:20, 4:50, 6:05

Thu., Jan. 24

11:45am, 2:20, 4:50, 6:05

Mon., Jan. 21

10:50am, 5:00, 6:45, 11:00

Tue., Jan. 22

5:00, 6:45, 11:00

Wed., Jan. 23

3:45, 6:45, 11:00

Starplex 12 San Marcos

1250 Wonder World Drive, San Marcos, 512/805-8000

Mon., Jan. 21

1:00, 4:00, 7:15, 10:15

Tue., Jan. 22

1:00, 4:00, 7:15, 10:15

Wed., Jan. 23

1:00, 4:00, 7:15, 10:15

Thu., Jan. 24

1:00, 4:00, 7:15, 10:15

Westgate 11

4477 S. Lamar, 512/899-2717

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Mon., Jan. 21

CC/DVS 12:00, 2:40, 5:20, 7:30, 10:15

Tue., Jan. 22

CC/DVS 12:00, 1:55, 4:35, 7:30, 10:05

Wed., Jan. 23

CC/DVS 12:00, 1:55, 4:35, 7:30, 10:05

Thu., Jan. 24

CC/DVS 12:00, 1:55, 4:35, 7:30, 10:05

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS FILM

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman

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