Venom: Let There Be Carnage

Venom: Let There Be Carnage ★★

This feels a lot closer to something that should have been released while Jessica Alba was still the Invisible Girl in the Fantastic Four, not so much now. The constant bickering between Tom Hardy and his gooey alter ego is annoying by minute three, and the old "talking to the inner voice noone can hear and accidentally saying something embarassing out loud" joke was barely funny the first time, and definitely not at all funny by repetition number 27.

It doesn't help that Hardy really, really goes out of his way to be the least likeable possible - he constantly looks like he was just thrown out of some Crossfit gym a few minutes ago, because everyone there was fed up with his unbearable douchyness. He apparently also didn't have time to shower before putting some sweat pants over his gym clothes.

Oh, fights, right, there's some action here. Problem is that those fights don't have any rules. Two gooey monsters beating and slicing and biting each other, and immediately healing every wound afterwards, in a barrage of sub-par special effects. There are no stakes to anything. Carnage couldn't be less threatening if they put him in a pink dress. But yeah, I know, the script lets Venom say "shit, it's a red one, we can't beat him" once, apparently that was supposed to be enough to make us worry for our "hero".

Woody Harrelson joyfully hamming it up can not save this prepubescent mess, and the one charming sequence where Venom goes out on his own and sulks a bit and then gets charmed by the ridiculously underchallenged Michelle Williams to come back to Sweaty Brock is a nice blueprint what a much better movie could look like if they would allow it to have any kind of heart.

Quite frankly, considering the post-credit sequence: I'm really dreading where this appears to be going. The MCU movies at least respect their audience enough to equip these monomythical characters with some dignity. Venom, however, even on this second attempt, is just embarassing.