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Review: ‘Venom’ movie delivers violence, dancing

By Trenmore Cone, movie critic

I was absolutely giddy to attend the premiere of “Venom: Let there Be Carnage” at my local movie-plex last weekend. I was excited to see the second installment of the series involving our hero, Eddie Brock, the reporter who has melded with an alien being (Venom) sent to destroy the Earth but after a bit, Venom thinks the world is a fine place and wants to save it. It’s that kind of writing that makes me love the cinema!

The sequel did deliver on the bloodshed but had a lot more singing than I expected.

The film begins with sweeping overhead shots of destroyed buildings; piles of bricks strewn about the streets of New York. And minutes later we have our first fight scene where one guy gets a nail in his earlobe. It was a pretty big letdown, though, and Venom was nowhere to be found. It was more of a standoff between a group of White guys and a group of Latinos. I was expecting one gang to invoke Venom, or maybe that Venom would swoop in with fangs-a-chompin’, but alas, it was broken up by a policeman.

It looked there would be another fight at a school dance, but it devolved into a love story between members of the rival gangs. I get it that you have to have sappy romance to bring women, and certain men, to the theater, but it just seemed to go on and on. Like the whole plot of the movie was about these two young people in love.

Finally, we get to a real fight scene. This happens in a garage where salt for the city streets is stored. Two people are stabbed to death, which was nice, but I was hoping Venom would burst out from one of the salt piles, or maybe he’d come barreling through the door in a tank. But no.

That’s when I said to the guy next to me “It’s like this isn’t even a Venom movie” and he rolled his eyes and shushed me. Jerk.

And then there were more songs. So. Many. Songs! OK, the actors were great singers but people on the run from an alien-human hybrid with hundreds or razor-sharp teeth don’t just suddenly burst into song. I spent the rest of the movie on my phone trying to find a “jump the shark” emoji to post on Twitter but the best I could do was the Easter Bunny hopping over an eggplant.

I complained to the manager and she told me that I’d walked into the wrong theater. Yeah, right, like I can’t find my way around. When I described what I’d seen she told me that I’d accidentally watched “West Side Story.” There’s no way that’s a real movie title. It doesn’t even have a colon in it! They tried to make the same excuse a couple years ago when I saw “Avengers: End Game” – the terrible one where all the superheroes looked like humanoid cats.

The point is, these theaters are full of schemers. Beware!

Trenmore Cone is a syndicated movie critic with a very good sense of direction and who never gets lost


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