In 1984, Marvel published a crossover mini-series titled “Secret Wars” starring iconic characters from the Marvel Universe including Captain America, Iron Man, Hulk, Wolverine, Spider-Man among many others from The Avengers & X-Men. Secret Wars is about a cosmic being known as “The Beyonder” who’s fascinated with superheroes. He decides to transport our favorite heroes and villains in a planet to fight each other, which predates the plot from The Running Man, Battle Royale or The Hunger Games. When Spidey’s costume was damaged in battle, he approaches a machine, examines a black substance, it attaches to him changing his costume to black with a white spider symbol on his chest.
After Secret Wars ended, Spider-Man’s confidence and abilities improved. Until one day, the black suit has a mind of its own releasing Spider-Man’s inner dark side. Spider-Man visits Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic about his “condition.” Reed diagnosed that the black suit is a “symbiote” who wants to permanently bond with him. Spidey managed to remove the symbiote from a church bell. Just as everything went back to normal, disgraced reporter and Peter Parker’s rival Eddie Brock investigates Spider-Man’s connection with the black suit in the hopes of gaining his career back, suddenly he fused with the symbiote as a monstrous hybrid called, “Venom.”
Since 1988, Venom immediately became a fan favorite starring in a solo comic series, appearing in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, video games such as Spider-Man, (original PlayStation) Ultimate Spider-Man as a playable character, Lego Marvel Superheroes and its sequel. Merchandise consisting of action figures, bobbleheads, trading cards, t-shirts, posters etc. Venom hands down, is my favorite Marvel villain of all time since I watched Spider-Man on Fox Kids.
In 2007, Spider-Man 3 introduced Venom on the silver screen with Topher Grace as Eddie Brock. Unlike its predecessors, the third entry earned mixed reviews from critics and fans alike.
A spin-off film centering around Venom was in development since 2008 prior to Sony rebooting Spider-Man with Andrew Garfield taking Tobey Maguire’s place as The Web Slinger. After The Amazing Spider-Man managed to earn decent reviews from critics, Sony immediately commenced a proposed cinematic universe to capitalize Marvel Studios & Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe. (MCU for short) The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was a disappointment among critics and fans alike.
Sony & Marvel Studios/Disney made an agreement to include Spider-Man in the MCU, giving Sony creative control with Spidey’s involvement in solo films and crossover appearances with Tom Holland as the character.
After the huge success of Spider-Man: Homecoming, Sony makes their second attempt to build a shared universe under the name, “Sony’s Marvel Universe.” MCU producer Kevin Feige mentioned that Venom isn’t in the MCU. However, Sony co-producer Amy Pascal revealed that it’s in the “same world” linked to Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Venom’s solo film stars Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock/Venom, with Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland) directing the first entry to Sony’s Marvel Universe. Besides Tom, Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed & Jenny Slate co-star.
Venom surprisingly earned negative reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gave it 28%, less than Spider-Man 3 (63%) & The Amazing Spider-Man 2. (52%) OUCH!!!!!!
Today’s review features a truckload of SPOILERS. If you haven’t seen this movie, read at your very own risk!
Beautiful & Butt Ugly Elements
Beautiful: Tom Hardy did an awesome job for his dual role as Eddie Brock & Venom. Thank god Sony didn’t bring back Topher Grace! Tom also played a dual role in Legend as a pair of twin gangsters/brothers. Pretty much explains how he got the job.
Fun Fact: According to Tom, Eddie & Venom’s chemistry is inspired by Ren & Stimpy. He confirmed that Venom’s voice is influenced by James Brown & Eddie’s is an “aw-shucks” everyman accent. Venom’s voice reminded me of Maurice The Hormone Monster from Nick Kroll’s Netflix series, Big Mouth.
Other Cast Members including Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed & Jenny Slate all did a good job for their respective performances.
Action Sequences kept me entertained such as the motorcycle chase scene, Venom fighting a SWAT team and a battle with Carlton Drake/Riot.
Unlike Topher Grace’s scrawny look in Spider-Man 3, Visual Effects brought Venom’s muscular appearance to life which is taken straight outta his comic book appearance. I’m giving the effects crew Bonus Points for doing the right thing.
Besides the title character, Special Effects also brought other unnamed symbiotes to life. Riot is the second symbiote to bond with Riz Ahmed’s character Carlton Drake.
Ludwig Göransson (Black Panther, Creed and the upcoming sequel Creed II) composed music for the movie.
Remember the previews when someone pronounced Symbiote as “Sym-Bi-Ote?” Sony edited the pronunciation as “Sym-Be-Ote.” PHEW!
The film’s narrative is based on “Venom: Lethal Protector” & “Planet Of The Symbiotes.”
Eminem (one of my favorite rappers) provided the titular theme song from his album “Kamikaze.” Eminem is also a huge fan of Spider-Man, prior to becoming a rapper, he wanted to be a comic book artist since childhood, he finally got his wish to partake in a Marvel related project.
Stan Lee makes a cameo appearance.
Woody Harrelson makes a cameo appearance as Cletus Kassady in a mid-credits scene. In the comics, he’s known as Carnage’s host. The latter is Venom’s offspring/archenemy.
A post-credits scene reveals a clip from Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse.
Butt Ugly: Ruben Fleischer did a poor job taking responsibilities as a director to make sure nothing goes horribly wrong.
Tom confirmed that Sony deleted forty minutes of his “favorite scenes.” I’m shocked that Sony pulled a Warner Bros. (WB for short) tactic for cutting off crucial parts in the DC Extended Universe. (DCEU for short)
The film wasted a golden opportunity for a hard R rating. Sony promised us that they were gonna make a darker and bloodier version of the character influenced by Deadpool & Logan. Reason why Venom is PG-13, is because Sony’s attempting a future crossover with Spider-Man.
A “we are through” cliche is used for the duo. Eddie doesn’t realize that he’s being hunted by Drake’s henchmen. I find this overused cliche in most buddy cop films described in one word, “contrived.”
I swear to god I’m not making this up. After Eddie’s recused by Venom who’s fused with Michelle Williams’ character Anne, kisses Eddie on the mouth. I find it disgusting, due to the fact Venom ate a henchmen’s head, plus he’s best friends with Eddie in the comics. It has nothing to do with Venom being possibly gay. To quote Seinfeld, “Not that there’s anything wrong with that!” Can you imagine your BFF (best friend forever) kissing you after eating a nasty meal? I find it pretty awkward. I have no choice but to Double Down this con, I can already predict messed up fan art of the duo making out. The equivalent of a human kissing a donkey’s mouth! IT’S DISGUSTING!!!!!!!!!
After Eddie fatally gets impaled by Riot, Venom managed to bring him back to life by literally attaching himself to his body in the stupidest way possible.
A Plot Hole involving a symbiote’s bond with a human, results in eating a host’s internal organs. Sony would you care to explain future sequels?
Venom sacrifices himself to prevent Eddie from burning alive. The next day, Venom somehow survives without showing how he returned to Eddie. Sony do I need to bring up “Show, Don’t Tell?”
Previews for the film promised us that it’s gonna be a darker take on the character. Unfortunately, its trying to be like the MCU’s trademark for mixing seriousness and comedy.
Why does Cletus Kassidy’s afro look like Ronald McDonald’s hairdo? Why didn’t Woody wear a shorter hairstyle instead of Kathy Griffin’s wig?
The Final Verdict: C, FOR CONSTIPATION!
Unlike Spider-Man’s big screen comeback in the MCU, Venom is a disappointing cluster fudge next to Spider-Man 3 & The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Oh Sony, when will you learn to respect and take Venom seriously? Show some dignity man! First you made Peter Parker act like John Travolta, now you made a twisted image of Venom kissing Eddie!? WHAT THE HELL’S WRONG WITH YOU SICKOS!?
I can’t believe I’m saying this as a lifelong fan of Venom, if you’re a fan of the character, you’re gonna be shell-shocked. If you want to watch something else, go out and see Bradley Cooper & Lady Gaga’s remake of A Star Is Born.
I’ve never been extremely disappointed since Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Please Sony, learn from your mistakes and treat Venom’s mythology correct in a possible sequel or crossover with Spider-Man. This is your last warning! Strike 1 was Topher Grace, Strike 2 was that uncomfortable kissing scene. If you enter Strike 3, I’m done! Please make an all out hard R rated Venom film just like Fox redeem themselves for making Deadpool & Logan.