Critic Consensus: Venom's first standalone movie turns out to be like the comics character in all the wrong ways - chaotic, noisy, and in desperate need of a stronger attachment to Spider-Man.
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Critic Reviews for Venom
A tone-deaf, uneven and maddeningly dumb clunker that never settles on an identity, all the way to the closing credits.
It's hard to mess up a car chase up and down the streets of San Francisco and Fleischer certainly doesn't, though at these speeds we should be gasping and laughing instead of just nodding our heads.
Is it a comedy? Is it an action film? [Venom] makes no pretense of being anything more than a superhero film,... trading the thematic material present in most major superhero ventures for biting off people's heads.
The Venom symbiote requires a perfect match to bond with its host; otherwise, the host is doomed. The Venom movie plays like a midnight horror that has invaded a superhero movie, and while there are some laffs to be had, it's far from a perfect match.
Audience Reviews for Venom
I suppose you have to be a big fan of the Venom comics to appreciate this. And even then, were you not hoping for something...more? Not one interesting or relatable character in sight, a really odd and awkward sense of humor, action scenes by the numbers, mediocre CGI of ridiculously silly creatures. There is no level on which this works. And worst of all, this was a big hit and there'll be more. The Marvel Cinematic Universe does play in entirely different leagues than this drivel.
This is a superhero movie that certainly has fun elements, but the story ... they dropped the ball, plain and simple. I actually felt sorry for Tom Hardy and Michelle Willaims, forced to sit in the figurative baggage car of the Marvel movie money train. And yet, despite the many, many flaws, it is a superhero movie. So, any port in a storm.
Forceful, cringe-worthy CGI, dialogue and humor, Venom needs more than just its witty, charming chemistry from Hardy and his symbiotic counterpart to save what seems to be just another sub-par entry in Sony's attempt to salvage what universe it has or is trying to create. 2.3/5
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