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Going into this movie, I thought I would hate it. I was never that big a fan of Venom in the comics (I didn't hate him; he just wasn't my favorite character), and I suppose Topher Grace's disappointing turn as the character in Spider-Man 3 was still on my mind when I first heard about it. The behind-the-scenes struggles and the fact that the movie had such a huge Narm folder on this website even before the film came out only made me more skeptical.
I went into the film expecting a terrible experience... and was pleasantly surprised to find that it's a delightfully camp-filled modern B-movie with enough charm and (for lack of a better term) wit to make for a fun watch.
While the movie does have a dark atmosphere that makes it similar to all those subpar superhero movies from the 2000s, I feel that it at least goes out of its way to subvert that image through its surprisingly well-rounded protagonist, Eddie Brock. Between his rocky-yet-sweet relationship with lead female Anne, his off-beat "odd couple" dynamic with the Symbiote, and the fact that he reacts to these bizarre situations the way a normal person would yet still rises to the occasion as the "hero" of the story all make it difficult not to cheer for him. Tom Hardy's performance here is also on point, about on par with Bane in terms of his best roles; he displays the full range of believable emotions and reactions that help sell the character. Yes, the accent he uses is a bit odd to hear at first, but unlike say Tommy Wiseau, it's not too goofy or at all unpleasant to listen to, and gives the character charm.
As for the other characters, Anne is a great romantic foil; the Venom symbiote is delightfully twisted and hilariously douchey while still being oddly endearing; Carlton Drake and Riot are wonderfully sinister and despicable as villains; the side characters serve their purpose; Stan Lee, of course, makes a great cameo (and a very poignant one, especially as it was his last one before his death); and a certain cameo at the end opens the door for great sequel possibilities.
The story is the horror-fueled twist on the typical superhero story that Fant4stic wished it was; Venom 2018 was dark but not joyless, creepy but not bleak. There is plenty of humor and heart in the film, the effects are above-average, and all in all, I genuinely look forward to the sequel.
I don't expect Venom to be retconned into the MCU, but I wouldn't be complaining if it was.
Good review. Sums up my thoughts about the movie.
"I also highly doubt that Sony will cancel its deal with Marvel and take back exclusive rights to Spider-Man." Well now Spiderman's sadly out of the MCU so...
Venom+Spiderman team up is possible now.
In my defense, I wrote that like a year before this whole Sony vs MCU debacle happened.
One thing I find odd about reviews is that they don\'t have the date the review was originally posted, but the date of the most recent comment. As such, no one would know how long ago this review was posted if not for InfinityLeague\'s comments.
I\'m still not all that interested in Venom, but this is a good review. I also think it\'s a shame that Sony would take back Spider-Man, so soon after Far From Home helped develop his character and establish that he\'d be important to the post-Endgame MCU.
I deleted the last few sentences about Sony and the MCU just to avoid any further confusion.
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