Everyone should just kick back, and watch this movie. Starring Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, and Woody Harrelson, this new comic-book movie that had loose ties (for now) to the current Marvel Cinematic Universe is a great way to get away from life and watch people fight, yell, run, and set things on fire.
Tom Hardy plays Eddie Brock who has joined with an alien symbiote Venom, who wants to bite off bad guy’s heads. A serial killer named Cletus Kasady played by Woody Harrelson is reaching out to Eddie, a journalist, and from there Venom unlocks a secret message that leads to the killer’s old victims. Seeking revenge, Cletus lures Eddie to visit him before his death sentence. Eddie gets a little too close, and part of his blood, which is fused with the alien, creates something in Cletus that makes him an even more powerful and evil force- Carnage.
Venom is his own personality, who speaks to Eddie’s mind. Others can’t hear him, so Eddie is constantly arguing with himself, forcing himself to stay calm, and sometimes outright fighting himself to keep Venom away from the bad guys. Venom may not be evil, but he is reckless. The dialogue was hilarious and his interactions with the voice in his head were so fun to watch.
I won’t dive more into the plot because I went into this blind, and sometimes I think that’s the best experience. There was certainly violence, romance, tragedy, and compelling backstories for the villains, all with a dark, Nolan-Batman trilogy tone to the film. If you are looking for something grittier than Thor or Spiderman, this is certainly your cup of tea. Just stay until the mid-credits, and you won’t be disappointed.
I was pretty invested, considering it’s not a long film, and you can almost spell out how it’s going to end. But Venom is full of surprises, and holds nothing back even while Eddie is just trying to live his life in peace, do the right thing, and have a successful career.
Some people complained that this should have been rated R, and there probably could have been a lot more opportunity with that rating to have more violence and mature dialogue, but I don’t think much was lost. It was still brutal to watch, and the tone was still dark while having the light-hearted undertone that we are used to from Marvel.
All I’ll say for now is, if you are diving into MCU Phase 4, then don’t miss out on this one.