So Venom has been out for a couple of weeks now, but I just finally had the chance to check it out this past weekend as did my long-distance friend and writer/contributor to this site, Tommy Suter. Instead of just doing a typical review since we both wanted to talk about it, we figured we would discuss our thoughts on the film and give our unanimous verdict. It’s quick and dirty. Also, we talk about spoilers, so if you want to avoid having anything ruined you might not want to read any further…
Nigel: There have been some pretty negative reviews for Venom, mostly from critics. What did you think of it?
Tommy: I liked it, the CGI was amazing as it should be for what is basically a monster movie. Though since it was PG13 it was odd how there was no blood when people were getting their heads bitten off. Especially since the mid-credit scene teasing Carnage which while done well, mentions something about the pattern of arterial spray.
Nigel: Yeah, that felt odd to me. There wasn’t any arterial spraying in this film. It still shocked me the first time he transforms and bites one of the mercenary’s heads off, but it would have been pretty awesome to show the whole thing happen, not to cut away so quickly. As other people have said, it feels like they were going for a pretty dark feel but they toned back the violence to possibly include it in the greater MCU if given the chance. In regards to Venom himself though, they absolutely nailed the look and feel of the character. His size compared to everyone else, that tongue of his, it looked fantastic. All he was missing was the giant white spider symbol across his chest. I’m hoping that shows up later.
Tommy: As far as the character of Eddie himself goes though, he changes drastically over the course of the movie. I get it that in movies you really can’t have much of a character arc given time restrictions, but they both went from “struggling with new powers/let’s kill everyone” to “saviors of the planet” a bit too abruptly.
Nigel: They tried to fit a lot into a two-hour movie. I was kind of hoping to see Eddie struggle with the whole thing a bit more than just being extremely hungry for tater tots. They brought up the fact he has a tumor and because of having the Symbiote attached to him he can survive, but they didn’t really dwell on it. Hopefully, with the next one, they can dive a bit more into the Symbiotes and how Eddie is coping. Eddie also mentions he used to work in New York and one of the astronauts that they save at the beginning is referred to as “Jameson“. There really is potential for an MCU crossover or something.
Tommy: Yeah that was pretty cool, but was it a tumor that Eddie has? I thought why Eddie was dying was because Venom started to eat his organs.
Nigel: Venom threatens to eat his organs if he doesn’t feed him humans, but Venom does mention that Eddie has a tumor and offers to help keep him alive in exchange for Eddie providing him with humans to eat.
Tommy: That could be it, I know he used eating Eddie as an excuse. That scene just went by a bit too fast to really tell. I just pieced together my conclusion from the failed hosts.
Nigel: I’m pretty sure when they were in the alleyway and Venom sticks Eddie to the brick wall Venom mentions to Eddie he has a tumor.
Tommy: Oh, I didn’t even notice that. I was thinking of the CT scan part when he got rid of Venom.
Nigel: He does have cancer in the comics but maybe the films won’t dwell on that factor as much.
Tommy: I didn’t know, I was never big into comics so what I know is from movies and cartoons. In all honesty, I know basically nothing about Venom other than he is a Spider-Man villain.
Nigel: That’s ok, I forgive you. The film really doesn’t waste any time getting to the good stuff so if you aren’t familiar with the character some things will just fly right over your head. I thought the fight scenes were cool and I found the humor throughout to be on point. Venom’s quips about eating humans were funny and it didn’t really mess with the tone. It was a dark sense of humor that added to everything.
Tommy: It was not overly comedic but what comedy that was there was good. The action was great and I applaud the movie for killing off a kid. It wasn’t shown but I thought it was a brave move. I also liked that Eddie only ended up being friends with his ex and did not win her back.
Nigel: Yeah that would have been pretty cliche. Her new boyfriend was pretty great too.
Tommy: Stan Lee’s cameo was pretty hilarious.
Nigel: Yes! It was one of the better ones. For whatever reason, I forget he does them and when he shows up it’s always a pleasant surprise.
Tommy: The one thing I hated the most though was how the scene at the end of the movie, where Venom is scaring the thug who demands protection money from the convenience store lady. It was in the previews. It doesn’t spoil anything concerning the overall story but it still lowers the impact of the scene in my eyes.
Nigel: Yeah that sucked. You know it’s coming and it’s exactly how you saw it in the trailer. It definitely dumbs down the ending. The only thing I didn’t like about it was the villain. He wasn’t anything special and when he joins with the Symbiote “Riot” I’d wished that he and Venom would have had more fights against each other. Overall though, I would recommend it. While it rushes through things pretty fast, the groundwork they’ve laid here is pretty solid for future films, especially with Carnage coming up.
Tommy: I would recommend it too. It’s a good movie and is much better than what the critics have been saying. I have high hopes for the sequel.
If you haven’t seen Venom yet, definitely check it out. If you have seen it though, let us know what you thought of it!
Venom is now playing in theatres