The reviews for Sony's Venom are here and while critics have found a few things here and there to like about the Tom Hardy starrer, the overall consensus is that Venom is straight up bad.
How bad? Well, the Rotten Tomatoes score is currently sitting at 28 percent with 41 of the 57 reviews coming in negative. Of course, that number could always improve, but it would take a lot to move things from "rotten" to "fresh" as Venom would need at least 75 percent positive reviews once at least 80 reviews are counted. With the movie opening in just a couple of days and more reviews rolling in, it is certainly possible.
Venom has quite a lot of potential currently riding on it, as it serves as the inaugural entry in the SUMC, or Sony's Universe of Marvel Characters. For better or for worse, the goal has been for Venom to push boundaries wherever it can, even with a PG-13 rating.
"We only ever talked about this movie as being PG13," director Ruben Fleischer explained to ComicBook.com. "What I've said in the past is that we wanted to push the violence to the hilt. The Dark Knight was always a huge reference point for me, personally, just as far as how far you could take a PG-13 because that movie they put a pen through a guy's forehead, so I figure if you can do that in a PG-13 movie you can bite some heads off."
However, even with the chance of some better reviews once the film opens, there still some scathing reviews out there from professional critics and hobbyists alike. While not particularly vicious, even ComicBook.com's own Brandon Davis said that the film "doesn't know if it wants to be gritty, funny, tough, or something else entirely. When a random feeling bout of hip hop music takes over the theater's speakers early on, it feels as though Venom is trying to identify as something else which has worked for other movies but suffers from never committing to a certain tone."
We've already rounded up some of the early reviews of Venom (and you can check them out here) but here are some of the harshest -- and in some cases, funniest -- reviews we've seen on the internet for the film so far. So, if you really want to know just how bad some critics think Venom is, read on and be sure to leave us your thoughts in the comments below.
Venom will be released in theaters on October 5th.
"Laughable & Septic"
‘Venom’: Tom Hardy’s Parasite Antihero Film Is Laughable & Septic [Review] https://t.co/1NBs2xhAeP— Rodrigo Perez - The Playlist ??? (@YrOnlyHope) October 3, 2018
It's difficult to discuss "Venom" without some mention of the infamous feculence line shown in the trailer—the symbiotic monster warning a naughty thug about leaving his dismembered body flailing about like "a turd in the wind." It's a laughable line, but maybe there's something to these recurring themes; after all, endoparasites are often found in feces, and "Venom" stinks like a horrid flush that just won't go down the drain.prevnext
"Were the special effects team on cocaine?"
Irish YouTuber Dara Tah kept things short, sweet and to the point...and had nothing kind to say about the film's special effects.
Venom review in a nutshell:October 3, 2018
"Leave this character in space"
"Dark Universe" syndrome strikes again. #Venom is very bad. Maybe we need to leave this character in space. My review: https://t.co/MnadDdClGa #TomHardy #SpiderMan #Marvel #RizAhmed #MichelleWilliams pic.twitter.com/oGpAuh2x9g— Jack Dignan (@JackDignanFilms) October 4, 2018
While the wacky eyes in the tweet's gif are hilarious Jack Dignan's review is brutal, especially when it comes to the disconnect between Hardy's acting and how the movie turned out.
"I just wish we got to see whatever movie Tom Hardy thought he was acting in."
No long review needed
Venom review pic.twitter.com/ZcZ6lXjn4o— Cheish (@TheCheish) October 3, 2018
"...hobbled, even sanitized"
Our review of #Venom, opening this Friday: "This is one instance in which a story that should have been unsparingly dark feels hobbled, even sanitized, by its PG-13 rating" https://t.co/YTtYH4kHtA pic.twitter.com/bDPVXpkIEN— LAT Entertainment (@latimesent) October 3, 2018
There's a lot to take away from the LA Times' review, but one line in particular about the lack of energy form the actors was a particularly harsh takeaway.
"The actors, for their part, hit their marks and earn their paychecks with the utmost professionalism, if little conviction or energy."prevnext
"Need an antidote"
Film blogger Chris Rogers addressed not just Venom as a movie but as the kick off to an entire film universe and was particularly brutal, calling the film "poison".
"As a disposable piece of popcorn fodder, it's merely hopeless. As the basis of a major cinematic enterprise, it's poison."prevnext
? #Venom's status as one of Marvel’s most popular and immediately-recognizable characters is precisely what makes Sony’s new standalone film about the complicated antihero such a curious puzzle to mull over: https://t.co/d4bMSlJawB pic.twitter.com/3UwnbEZcW1— io9 (@io9) October 3, 2018
io9's review overall wasn't terribly brutal, but they did take on something most of the other critics did not: the marketing.
If anything, Venom's greatest weakness is actually the way Sony's marketed the movie. Like Hardy's accent, it's seemed as if the studio hasn't been quite sure just what kind of tone it wants to strike with its advertisements, which send mixed messages about what kind of movie really Venom is. It's not nearly as dark and bloody or brooding of a film as Sony could have made. Rather, it's a loud, kind of silly action/buddy cop movie that just wants you to kick back with a bucket of popcorn and have a good time while a space monster licks his chops at you.prev