Esther McCarthy reviews Spider-Man: Homecoming and Sanctuary
Spider-Man: Homecoming (12A) ****
British actor Tom Holland - who stole the show as a youngster in tsunami drama The Impossible - builds magnificently on that promise here, giving us a character to root for, and occasionally to cringe at.
That’s ok, because young Peter Parker is just a teenager, trying to find his way in life and with women, let alone being tasked with helping to save planet Earth from marauding baddies.
This film is aimed squarely at younger audiences in a way that’s fun and refreshing following all those darker comic-book adaptations of recent years.
Holland is terrific, aided and abetted by a nicely shabby Michael Keaton as the villain of the piece.
Thrilled by his experience with The Avengers, Peter struggles with routine life at home with Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), where his heart is not quite in focusing on school grades and quizzes.
It’s a relief that this Spider-Man doesn’t bother itself with origins or backstory. We’ve had plenty of that, and a remark in passing about Peter being bitten by a spider is quite enough.
Instead, Homecoming zips along to the fun stuff, and a great and tense action sequence set in a dangerously high lift shaft sets us up for the adventures to come.
Sanctuary (12A) ****
Kieran Coppinger and Charlene Kelly play the lead roles in this wonderful new Irish romantic comedy, which is as groundbreaking as it is charming.
The first movie of its kind in the world to feature an almost-entire cast of people with intellectual disabilities, Sanctuary tells the story of a young couple in love who want to share some time together during a memorable day out from the training centre in which they met.
Witty and gently provocative, the film tells the story of a group of friends who attend the same day centre and the comic events that happen to them during a trip to the cinema.
Among them, it focuses on Larry (Kieran Coppinger) who has Down Syndrome and Sophie (Charlene Kelly) who has epilepsy and an intellectual disability, and their efforts to spend some time together. The film tells the story of a group of friends who attend the same day centre and the comic events that happen to them during a trip to the cinema. A low-key delight.