Venom Review - A loud, vapid pile of garbage
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Verdict: Venom isn't so much a step back for superhero movies as it is a gigantic leap into a cinematic past best left forgotten. It's like someone opened a time capsule from the mid-00s - Venom fits neatly with the likes of such a awful movies as Catwoman and Ghost Rider, and not even a fully committed performance from Tom Hardy is enough to salvage it. The very idea of making a movie about one of Spider-Man's most well-known and powerful foes without Spider-Man in it has received its fair share of ridicule, but it's not without merit - Venom's popularity extends beyond his rivalry with Spidey and he has a history of solo adventures and stories as an anti-hero. Between that and the Jekyll & Hyde dynamic between the alien symbiote and its human host, there's certainly enough material and clout to justify a feature length Venom movie that doesn't even mention Spider-Man. Unfortunately, this outing fails completely to capitalize on that potential. (Allegedly) hotshot investigative reporter Eddie Brock (Hardy) tanks his career and relationship with lawyer Anne (Michelle Williams) because of a decision so incomprehensibly stupid, that even the man-eating alien symbiote with no concept of basic morality later tells him to apologize. The symbiotes are on Earth courtesy of the Life Foundation, led by the evil Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed) who wants to use them to save the human race from itself, blah-blah-blah. These alien creatures need a human host to survive and thrive, and through a series of stupid contrivances, disgraced reporter Eddie Brock gets bonded to Venom. Soon after this happens, the movie devolves into a non-stop barrage of noise and overkill. It rarely, if ever, stops to take a breath, instead throwing action sequence after action sequence at the audience and maintaining full throttle momentum all the way to the end. Not only does this onslaught of carnage and destruction not help hide the countless plot holes and logic gaps (more on that later), it very quickly dulls the senses. It's not long before the movie's action loses any impact, becoming little more than just noise and tentacle shapes smashing together. Eddie and Venom's dynamic is all over the place. At first, Venom shows little interest in what his human host wants or says, taking direct control over his body and making it clear that he's going to be calling the shots. Moments later, the symbiote indulges Eddie by letting him go to his old workplace.
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