Lots of Teeth, Few Sharp


  Most films achieve success if they do what they set out to do. They have a clear vision that’s well executed. They know exactly what the atmosphere of their movie will be.“Venom” is the opposite of this. A coherent vision has been thrown out the window and the end result is an average antihero flick with a few memorable moments.

  Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) is a popular but controversial reporter that’s already been run off from New York to San Francisco because of his questionable methods for acquiring the truth. Despite this foul-up, we see he’s bounced back happy, engaged, and popular. At least, at the start. While investigating millionaire and scientist Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed) he goes too far, losing his girl, his job, and being exposed to a parasite alter-ego known as Venom.

  The film up until Brock’s union with the symbiote is rather dull as there are many talks about journalism, failed human experiments in Drake’s secret lab, and a scene of stalking when Brock shows up outside his ex’s house. Superheroes usually get a free pass for following their current or former lovers but Brock hasn’t even become an antihero yet when he pretends to just be passing by.

  Of course, many of us know Venom and his enemy Spider-Man, but this solo film tacked with a PG-13 rating is limited in what it can do. Much of the movie is devoted to Eddie, the man running away with his newfound partner providing assistance as they flee Drake’s goons. Sadly, just as we’re beginning to see Drake as a manipulative villain, a new one emerges and a dimly lit climax ensues.

  That’s not to say the film doesn’t have its moments. Tom Hardy is committed to his role, and Venom has some great one-liners. If nothing else, I cared about our protagonist which many action movies struggle to do. However, there’s not as much bite to go along with the humor. Venom is certainly capable of killing and devouring people, but these fights never feel as ferocious as they should be.