Venom has been on my radar for a while. I’ve never read the comics but the trailer got me in one view. Plus I love Tom Hardy. And since I’ve already bought in, it’s been hard to avoid the hype on this one, especially how badly it’s been treated in other reviews. Why all the negativity, guys? Well I had to go see for myself and make up my own mind.
When Eddie Brock acquires the powers of a symbiote, he will have to release his alter-ego “Venom” to save his life.
This movie took so long to get going, like there was a giant amount of complex backstory. There wasn’t – the character and situation of Eddie Brock was really very simple and the first act could have been pared down, like, a lot. But instead they carefully laid out the details of Brock’s life – was this to appease fans of the comic? Whatever the reason, the pacing needed a little work. That said, I really liked the way that all the characters changed throughout the film. We could see the way someone starts out, something happens to them and they adapt to it. Not just the main character but most of the characters; they do not remain two-dimensional.
Venom looked so good, just so good. The actions scenes were a just joy to watch, with exciting explosions and well-choreographed fights and stunts. I also loved the special effects, most especially how the symbiote moved outside a host and also the morph scenes as it manifested. My goodness Tom Hardy was so good in this. But why no fan service? I definitely would have enjoyed that. Oh- and the other actors were good as well. Riz Ahmed was wonderfully chilly as the villain. Michelle Williams and Reid Scott were also really good as Brock’s ex and her new beau, respectively.
One way Venom fell flat was its humor. It wasn’t really that funny, though I get the feeling that it tried a bit, though half-heartedly. Some things were funny, there were some great one-liners. I definitely laughed but considerably less than I usually do in a Marvel movie. In fact, Venom felt more like a DC movie than Marvel, which was weird. Did Marvel suddenly get Tone Envy? There was violence without jokes. Venom was Dark and Gritty; we got a sense of Brock’s pain here. And people actually did get their heads literally bitten off and not hilariously.
So is Venom worth watching? Yes, I’d say so. Don’t listen to the haters, it’s very entertaining. To be fair, I’m not sure how it would resonate with actual fans of the character/series. Did it translate well from the comic books? Couldn’t tell you. Venom’s not perfect by any means but it holds up. I will definitely be watching the sequel, where I hope they show a bit more of their lead actor.