With a 28% on Rotten Tomatoes, and 41 out of 57 reviews stating the movie as ‘bad’, Venom has terribly failed its initial impression. Tom Hardy is a scene-killer; he nails both his human and alien forms. But Hardy’s craft is not sufficient to reinstate the film from the tedium, and ambiguity it has fallen prey to. What every superhero-supervillain does is simply repeated by Venom; things are highly comic- bookish. And no inventiveness can be seen that would depart the film from not run- off- the- mill stereotypes. The movie is pitched for a limited audience; those who would just go watch a movie because they have nothing better to do. Let alone wow moments, the film is way to gnomic to even define internally, what and why is it happening.
For an inaugural entry for Sony Universe of Marvel Characters, Venom was not the best bet. It was supposed to push along some boundaries. But with a PG-13 rating, things were not that easy. Tweezing out the gooey, crude Venom with its signature gruesome tongue, the movie does give bravura of visuals. But all that is mere eye- candy that only reluctantly allows the unexciting plot line to escape the critical eye.
When we disdain a superhero flick for being regrettably conventional, what ideas does it render? ‘There must be a mad scientist on the loose. Later he will infect the hero with some kind of LSD. The hero probably too has a mysterious girlfriend, and things will be largely about saving the day.’ If this is a general perception, then yes, the film is exactly this. The ho-hum, regular flick does not treat with a single ‘like-never- before’ scene, though we largely anticipate one throughout the movie. It is not like the film did not have the fuels to burn. It was rife with a lot of rich backgrounds and parallel flavor. There was scope for the inclusion of relationship problems, scientific mysteries, and breakthroughs, inner demons, trust, and treachery, in the storyline. But the film refrained from efficient utilization of any of its given potential.
The story which could have been unsparingly dark felt hobbled, in fact, cleansed. All thanks to its PG-13 rating. Riz Ahmed’s Carlton Drake, a pathetically parodied Elon Musk, wants to fuse exterritorial symbiotes with humans. Where do these symbiotes come from? How does this fusion work? What will be untapped? Possibly they must have been edited out like was the case of logic in the show. Michelle Williams’ Anne, since is the heroine in the saga, will be shown from the bright side of the spectrum. After all, she is the heroine- she has to be angelic- irrespective of the fact that she basically covers up her boss’ murderous research with her legal prowess- she must still be an angel.
Amidst several satirical analysis, Rodrigo Perez went ahead to scorn the half-witted work of director Ruben Fleischer:
“It’s difficult to discuss “Venom” without some mention of the infamous feculence line shown in the trailer—the symbiotic monster warning a naughty thug about leaving his dismembered body flailing about like “a turd in the wind.” It’s a laughable line, but maybe there’s something to these recurring themes; after all, endoparasites are often found in feces, and “Venom” stinks like a horrid flush that just won’t go down the drain.”
Venom is a drag of a movie. 2 hours and 20 minutes of a dull, dispiriting, senselessly regular superhero film. There is irreverent humor, some fascinating action- but nothing that we have not seen already this year in, say ‘life’. This hard attempt at Spider-Man minus Spider-Man is utterly disappointing and has cast a dark shadow over the success of SUMC’s upcoming ventures. If asked to describe the movie from one of its own dialogues, “I saw something really bad”.