Mild spoilers ahead******
I don’t know about you, but I never have quite been at peace with the films we have had featuring Spider-Man. It was great to finally get our first feature film with Spider-Man several years ago with Tobey at the helm, and he did fine. But I grew tired of the tortured Peter Parker, especially by the third film. The following Spider-Man was pretty good, but seemed a notch down, and we get some of that tortured Peter yet again and another agonizing origin story. Mercifully that has all ended. Now I do agree we need a Peter Parker who is struggling with school, work, and the pressures of weighing the great responsibility that comes with great power. We got some of that in Spider-Man Homecoming and I have no doubt we will get more of it in the second film.
What I really wanted was a joyous adventure that celebrated an iconic character, not an old beat up shoe re-wrapped in a flashy new package. I feel this film delivered on that wish. We desperately needed something to make us care about Spider-Man again, because most of us were tired of it. Tom Holland was magnetic on-screen and single-handedly accomplished that for me. While I am waiting for most Marvel films to finally end, ex: “Civil War”, with this film I was sad when it did end. I could have watched Tom on screen for 5 hours. His charismatic, youthful exuberance and pure infectious joy shines on screen and harkened me back to the Spider-Man I read in the 70’s and 80’s as a kid.
I also felt that Keaton as the Vulture was amazing and believable. For younger folks Michael Keaton was kind of known as the everyman actor back in the day before he became Batman. I know Tom Hanks is that on steroids, but Keaton did movies as journalists, car makers, and a stay at home Dad(Mom) , and a regular guy addicted to drugs. In this film he is a regular guy trying to provide for his family in a world trying to screw him out of accomplishing that. I did not expect to really care about the character as he was far from my fav in the comics, and never addressed in films. In this film, Vulture was almost a guy you felt sorry for. I mean he is not evil per say, he is flawed and angry. He has a normal family , and a normal life outside of being a criminal of course. He is one of the top villains in the Marvel Filmverse thanks to Keaton.
The other notable presence is Iron Man. Of course Iron Man is a kind of mentor to Peter Parker and tries to get him to stay under the radar as Spider-Man and you can guess how well that worked. But despite seeing Downey over and over in these films, he remains an enjoyable presence. All in all this is my favorite Spider-Man film to date despite what is a pretty weak over all story.