The first Venom film was less of a horror film and more of a dark comedy that turned one of Marvel’s most lethal anti-heroes into a wise cracking jokester. I understand taking a little liberty with the Eddie Brock character. In the comics he was just a douche bodybuilder/freelance photographer. In the film he was changed into a mild mannered viral reporter. When Eddie comes into contact with the Venom symbiote the film was less about body horror and more of a buddy cop film meets The Mask. So with the sequel, director Andy Serkis decided to dive head first into the comedic aspect of it.
Distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing, it is the second film in Sony’s Spider-Man Universe and the sequel to Venom (2018). The film is directed by the aforementioned Serkis from a screenplay by Kelly Marcel, based on a story she wrote with Tom Hardy who stars as Eddie Brock / Venomalongside Michelle Williams, Naomie Harris, Reid Scott, Stephen Graham, Peggy Lu, and Woody Harrelson. In the film, Brock struggles to adjust to life as the host of the alien symbiote Venom, while serial killer Cletus Kasady (Harrelson) escapes from prison after becoming the host of Carnage, a chaotic spawn of Venom.
Everyone in the film really hams it up here with the majority of the jokes falling completely flat. Hardy really wants these films to be action comedies but it just fails to produce any real laughs. Harrleson sees Hardy hammy acting and turns up the cheese to eleven. Again, Carnage who is a horrifying serial killer who is given the power of a symbiote should be just asscary on film. However, Cletus Kasady is played more here like a love sick weirdo with Carnage the main source of well…carnage.
Not to say the entire film is bad, the action scenes are pretty impressive with the cathedral brawl between Venom and Carnage not only being a highlight of the film, but probably one of the best live action comic book fights.
Now about that mid-credits scene – SPOILERS AHEAD
Okay if you are still reading this I am assuming you have seen the movie or one of those people who just like spoilers. Either way, the end of the film finds Eddie and Venom on the run from the feds and laying low on some island. As they are sitting in a hotel room, a flash of light fills the room and their dingy hotel room transforms into an elegant resort room. Venom looks at the television screen where J.Jonah Jameson (played once again by J.K. Simmons) is speaking about the infamous menace known as SPIDER-MAN! Tom Holland from the MCU. So somehow, someone has transported Venom to the MCU will he will no doubt at some point cross paths with Spider-Man. I am assuming this is building towards Spider-Man No Way Home where Spider-Man and Doctor Strange will be fighting off multiple iconic Spider-Man villains from the Marvel Multiverse.
All in all, Venom Let There Be Carnage felt less like a stand alone movie and more like a stepping stone onto greater films in the future. Like Iron Man 2. Still, it’s worth watching I guess…when its available on a streaming service. HipsterZOMBIEJoint Experience gives this film a very slight recommend.
Venom knows better than to mess with HipsterZOMBIEJoint Experience!