“Venom: Let There Be Carnage” Review

Max Christopher

     “When I get out, there’s gonna be carnage,” was the mic drop final line of Venom that left Spider-Man and movie fans hanging on the edge of their seats for three years.

     Venom: Let There Be Carnage is the latest Marvel film from Sony Pictures and serves as a direct sequel to the 2018 original. Venom: Let There Be Carnage picks up a year after the events of the first movie and wastes no time diving right into the insanity. Eddie Brock, having adjusted to a superhuman alien parasite living inside of him, begins to put his life back together, while continuing interviews with famed serial killer, Cletus Kassady, hinted at in the post-credits scene of the last movie. Eddie, along with Venom’s help, solves the mystery of one of Cletus’ oldest killings and puts him on death’s row. Now with a grudge, Cletus bonds with Venom’s offspring symbiote, Carnage, to start a killing spree and free his imprisoned superpowered girlfriend.

     Though this premise may seem disjointed, convoluted, and even confusing to some, Venom: Let There Be Carnage is one of the most silly and self-aware superhero flicks to come out in the past 5 years. With only an hour and a half runtime, the movie can feel a bit fast paced at times, to the point of being a bit confusing. However, this quick pace allows for maximum enjoyment, as the film jumps from one scene to the next with energy.

     Let There Be Carnage has a noticeably more fun and playful tone than its predecessor, no doubt in small part due to the changing of directors between films and the choice to allow lead actor Tom Hardy in the writer’s room. Hardy, along with co-star Woody Harrelson’s performance are what pulls the movie together. Both actors appear to be having a blast playing these iconic comic book characters. The final show-down between Venom and Carnage allows both stars full range to show off their characters, as well as display the symbiotes in full action.

     Harrelson’s Carnage is a comic book come to life. Any scenes where the red symbiote is allowed to rampage are some of the most exciting (and oftentimes, thrilling and intense) scenes you will see in any superhero movie.

     The film isn’t exempt from issues, though. Much like the first Venom, the film suffers from having no real dynamic characters and no significant lessons learned. Aside from Eddie realizing he’s a total jerk to the people in his life (for the second time), no character growth occurs. Additionally, the film suffers at points from not having enough time with the two main characters together. Not to mention a subpar Eminem accompaniment track.

     However, Venom: Let There Be Carnage provides on exactly what it’s trailers promise: dumb, self-aware, CGI fun. Between Tom Hardy and Woody Harrelson’s on-screen chemistry, an engaging enough story, exciting visuals, and one incredible post-credits scene that sets up the future of the franchise, Venom: Let There Be Carnage should be a fun time for anyone in the mood for a short superhero movie, and a must-see for Marvel fans.