Venom is underrated: Don’t listen to the critics

Elliot Tritto

Staff Writer


Ever since I was 5-years-old, I’ve been obsessed with Marvel’s friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Across all mediums, it cultivated me to become more attached into the entire “Spider-Verse.” 

One of those reasons why includes a plethora of original characters like the Punisher, Doctor Octopus and the bold and the beautiful, Venom. In 1988, Venom appeared in the comics as an evil archetype of Spider-Man at which point transitioned into a cutthroat antihero. 

Venom’s lively presence in comic books and video games built a very strong fan base in the comic book community and resulted into a massive blockbuster.

On Oct. 5, Venom opened to movie theaters and “grabbed $80 million at 4,250 sites, smashed the record for an October opening, topping the $55.8 million launch of “Gravity,” according to Dave McNary from Variety. 

Despite the wide-reaching triumph, most critics have slammed the film brutally for its lack of soul, disrespect of source material and/or a superhero film that is under the Hollywood machine. However, walking into Venom as both a comic book fan and a moviegoer, an opened mindset was needed. 

Even considering the legal issues of not having Spider-Man involved, starting a new franchise, and too much exposure in the trailer, an open-mind still should be in place. 

Venom deals with a ground-breaking journalist, Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy), who loses everything he loves due to a story about maniacal founder and CEO of Life Foundation, Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed). 

When a new lead arrives, Brock accidentally gets exposed to an alien symbiote named Venom where he transforms into a ravenous beast of superhuman strength and having a toxic mentality. 

Overall, Venom stands as a very underrated movie with some negatives and many overlooked positives.

The Negatives

With a $100 million budget, the movie’s presentation felt very clichéd and bland.  The camerawork felt very extravagant with a basic routine of wide shots in selective spots of San Francisco and up-close shots of the characters. 

To correct this, having a first-person perspective of Venom killing people or having a citizen look at the emerging symbiotes fighting, would’ve improved the presentation instantly.  Also, the art direction felt very weak and lazy. 

Superhero movies succeed due to an immersion factor by having imaginative worlds, a creative array of colors and iconic locations. 

Venom struggles to have a complete immersion factor to include only the science labs at the life foundation and the streets of San Francisco. 

To continue, the antagonist, Riot, could’ve become a more dangerous and layered character, like in the comics, and yet didn’t due to a lack of character development and screen time. 

Riot’s impact would’ve succeeded more if his insight were included to further  progress the story. 

The Positives 

Hardy presents a flawless portrayal of Eddie Brock by showing his tough, stubborn attitude, sarcas, and unconscious compassion towards others.  Alongside Eddie, Venom immediately explodes onto the screen as a gruesome, loveable and surprisingly funny character. 

Together, every scene was very appealing and engaging to watch. Moving onward, Riz Ahmed plays a very underrated villain with intellectual and realistic motivations. Drake’s sick of humanity, finding the meaning of life and thinks you could simply look to the stars. 

He’s cured deadly diseases so why can’t he speed up the evolution of mankind? Another fascinating reason that I love Carlton is his wardrobe. Dressing in a black suit with a smart watch and a pair of vans presents a modern twist of the evil business man. 

Not to mention, Carlton and Riot’s relationship remains jaw-dropping to watch. Combined with their similar ideals, Riot’s appearance and encounters is simply sick to see.

Lastly, I loved how Sony promoted this movie as a very serious antihero story to which is a dark and humorous movie. I hate how the industry creates movies with only dramas and comedies. 

It’s refreshing to see something in the gray area where there’s perfect moments of the light and dark.   

Despite the negatives and pointless criticisms, Venom possesses as a refreshing take on the superhero genre. 

As a fan and a moviegoer, I hope to see Sony right their wrongs with future sequels and spinoffs and continue this great, symbiote journey.

The verdict: Venom 7.5/10