After a semi-successful trilogy by Sam Raimi and two over-the-top films from Marc Webb, it seemed like everyone’s neighborhood wall crawler was going to put up the cowl for good, while studios battled over whether Spider-Man should be portrayed as an emo teenager or an emotionally challenged Tobey Maguire. Yet, who would have thought that thirty minutes of Tom Holland donning spandex in Captain America: Civil War was a sign of better things to come? Holland’s performance earned him stripes for his own solo movie in the form of Spider-Man: Homecoming, the title of which references the eponymous high school dance and is symbolic of Spider-Man joining the larger Marvel family owned by Disney. As with anyone who has to interact with new relatives, Homecoming can feel awkward and terse as it attempts to navigate and connect with past films, but once it finds its own footing, the movie flips into high gear. In the end, the latest Spidey excels as a greater extension of the Marvel Universe, and also as a solid stand-alone feature buoyed by a stellar supporting cast, infectious humor and a fresh, contemporary high school setting.
ICYMI: Hundreds of students, alumni, and Ithacans flooded the stands of the Schoellkopf Field on Sept. 23 to enjoy concerts by the Big Red Marching Band and Sparks the Rescue, traditional parts of the annual Homecoming fireworks and laser light show.
The sky was clear on the bright, sun-filled morning just a year ago when Cornellians gathered on the Arts Quad to celebrate the start of the next chapter in Cornell’s history. During Homecoming, the community met for the inauguration of our 13th president, marking the closing celebrations of our sesquicentennial year. With the statue of Ezra Cornell looming in the background, Elizabeth Garrett stood strong, detailing her vision for Cornell at home and abroad. Just months later, over 1,000 Cornellians gathered at the same site, but now on an overcast afternoon. Facing toward Andrew Dickson White this time, we gathered in silence as the chimes rang commemorating President Garrett’s time on the Hill.
In 1915, Schoellkopf Field opened for operation and Touchdown I was climbing the goalposts when Cornell won its first national championship. The Red went an undefeated 9-0 that year, 100 seasons ago. Last Saturday a statue of Touchdown and the 1915 Plaza, where the sculpture stands, were dedicated in honor of the beloved mascot and the legendary Cornell football team. Cornellians years and miles apart came together outside Teagle Hall before the Homecoming football game to celebrate. “After more than 75 years Touchdown has returned home, and on homecoming to boot,” said John Foote ’74.
Amidst the bacchanalia and school spirit, between the darties and the parties, waited Passion Pit. At first blush, the Cornell Concert Commission selected the perfect headliner. Taking into account their buzzing, adrenaline-stimulating synths, pulsing beats and frontman Michael Angelakos’ trademark falsetto, there are few better bands to get shamelessly sweaty to in a cavernous gymnasium than Passion Pit. The group tempers their serious indie roots (Angelakos first recorded Passion Pit songs as a Valentine Day’s gift E.P. for his girlfriend) with widespread listenability and chart success to boot. Yet, Passion Pit stood to potentially exceed already-soaring expectations amongst the student body.
Head coach Jim Knowles ’87 is trying to take a more even-keeled approach in 2008 than in the past, but it was difficult for him not to get excited after his team beat preseason Ivy League favorite Yale in front of a Homecoming crowd of 11,143. Cornell’s soggy 17-14 upset over the perennial Ancient Eight contenders Saturday afternoon at rain-drenched Schoellkopf Field was primarily the by-product of an aggressive and well-executed defensive scheme that restricted senior All-American running back Mike McLeod to 57 rushing yards and zero trips to the end zone on 20 carries.