After a lot of waiting, Sony’s highly anticipated comic book movie sequel, Venom: Let There Be Carnage, has at last been unleashed, but was it worth the wait? The movie, which reunites Tom Hardy with himself as both the journalist Eddie Brock and his extra-tarrestrial pal Venom, has now been seen by critics, and this is what they have to say…
We begin with Robert Daniels from The Los Angeles Times, who found himself not just enjoying the expected comic book action sequences, but also the movie’s unexpected sweetness as it tackles themes like love and companionship.
“It’s not the promised spectacle that cements Venom: Let There Be Carnage as touching, wild entertainment. It’s the themes of home, love, and companionship that make Serkis’ sequel another reason to want more Venom movies, and quickly.”
Kristen Page-Kirby of The Washington Post meanwhile, was not exactly complimentary of Venom: Let There Be Carnage, but if you’re looking for unabashed fun, and were a fan of the first movie, then you’ll find a lot to like in the follow-up.
“This sequel inhabits the same comfortably dumb space as its predecessor. If you liked the first one, you’ll like this one.”
These sentiments were shared by Christy Lemire from RogerEbert.com, who too felt that Venom: Let There Be Carnage took everything from the first movie and ramped it up, resulting in a much sillier, and therefore much more enjoyable sequel.
“Silliness was the first film’s strength, which everyone involved seems to have realized and leaned into hard for the follow-up.”
Sadly, not everyone was as charmed by the chaotic energy and shameless silliness of Venom: Let There Be Carnage, with CinemaBlend’s Eric Eisenberg rating the movie a lacklustre two out of five stars and saying, “It’s a blockbuster that is surely going to create some divisive reactions, as those who can turn a blind eye to the litany of overwhelming problems in Venom will likely be able to do the same mental gymnastics necessary to be equally entertained by Venom: Let There Be Carnage.”
Richard Lawson of Vanity Fair was similarly unimpressed, describing the Sony sequel as being “mostly noisy and flimsy and without purpose, a hasty response to the original’s unexpected success and little else. Naturally a third film is advertised at the end.” Still, if you liked those things about the original Venom, then you’ll no doubt have a good time.
This noisy approach to the project was equally despised by David Sims from The Atlantic, whose thoughts on Venom: Let There Be Carnage is likely to echo in the ears of the movie’s detractors. “The viewing experience is like going to a nightclub and having someone scream the plot in your ear over a thumping bass line — ironic, given that Venom’s biggest weakness is sound waves,” he said.
So, it is this sense of all-out fun and mindless entertainment that you will seemingly either love or hate about Venom: Let There Be Carnage, with Joey Magidson of Awards Radar summing up these polar opposite responses in his review.
“Venom: Let There Be Carnage has much more success making you laugh than it does thrilling you. It’s not good, but it is a decent amount of fun.”
EW’s Leah Greenblatt meanwhile commended Venom: Let There Be Carnage for doing exactly what audiences will expect.
“A sequel whose title is both a promise and the premise, in its entirety.”
Following the cinematic carnage of the sequel, Kate Erbland of IndieWire simply cannot wait for more from Tom Hardy’s Venom saying, “There doesn’t need to be carnage (or, hell, even Carnage), there just needs to be Venom, and more of it.”
Amy Nicholson of The New York Times was another critic more than able to lean into the inherent ridicukosness of Venom: Let There Be Carnage, and was particulatly enamored with the bizarre treatment of the symbiotes and their relationships with their respective human hosts.
“This is, in essence, a slapstick blood bath about two threesomes both in desperate need of throuples therapy.”
Picking up over a year after the events of Sony’s 2018 hit movie, Venom, investigative journalist Eddie Brock struggles to adjust to life as the host of the alien symbiote Venom, which grants him super-human abilities in order to be a lethal vigilante. Brock attempts to reignite his career by interviewing serial killer Cletus Kasady, who becomes the host of the symbiote Carnage and escapes prison after a failed execution.
Directed by Lord of the Rings star Andy Serkis from a screenplay by Kelly Marcel, based on a story she wrote with Tom Hardy, Venom: Let There Be Carnage stars Hardy as both Eddie Brock and his alien alter ego Venom alongside Michelle Williams as Anne Weying, district attorney and Brock’s ex-fiancée; Naomie Harris as Frances Barrison AKA Shriek; Reid Scott as Dan Lewis, a doctor and Weying’s fiancé Stephen Graham as Detective Mulligan; and Woody Harrelson as Cletus Kasady AKA Carnage.
Venom: Let There Be Carnage is currently sitting at a reasonable 60% on Rotten Tomatoes, and considering that the first Venom only managed to achieve a mere 30%, it looks like this sequel is a vast improvement on its predecessor. Venom: Let There Be Carnage is also sat at an even more reasonable score of 86% from audiences, suggesting that, much like the first outing, Venom 2 will be warmly welcomed by the theater-going public. Should the sequel hit the same financial highs as the first Venom, which garnered over $800 million at the box office, Eddie Brock and his alien buddy are sure to be tearing up the screen once again in Venom 3.
Certainly, a threequel is something that Tom Hardy already has his eye on. “I’m deeply invested in this particular franchise,” Hardy said of another follow-up recently. “If it’s successful, there is another one to do.” Sony Pictures’Venom: Let There Be Carnage will finally be released to theaters from October 1, 2021, having been delayed from an initial October 2020 date due to the ongoing global situation.