I’ve always been an avid follower of the Marvel movies, particularly the films released as part of the MCU. If you saw my Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) post a little while back you’ll know that since Avengers: Endgame (2019) I’ve been feeling a little “Marvelled out”.
At one point I was totally up to date with every movie Marvel had put out but I’ve recently found myself behind, what with all the new films and TV shows (I still haven’t seen Loki).
Since I missed it at the cinema and recently saw it was streaming on Disney+, I recently decided to watch:
If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s one of the latest Marvel offerings.
It stars Salma Hayek (From Dusk Till Dawn), Angelina Jolie (Maleficent), Gemma Chan (Captain Marvel), Richard Madden (Rocketman), Brian Tyree Henry (Joker) Don Lee (Train to Busan) and Barry Keoghan (Dunkirk) among others.
This is what it’s about:
The Eternals, a race of immortal beings with superhuman powers who have been living on Earth in secret for thousands of years are forced out of the shadows to reunite against mankind's most ancient enemy, the Deviants.
Between not being overly impressed by the clips I’d seen of this film and the fact that I’d heard mostly negative reviews about it, I wasn’t particularly enthusiastic about watching it going in. I have to say though, I really enjoyed it!
I don’t know if once again my low expectations helped with my enjoyment of it but I honestly don’t see what people are complaining about!
I can only assume that a lot of people have gotten used to the typical “Marvel format” now, and because this movie dared to be a little different (and dare I say, slightly less comedic), people didn’t like the change.
I for one loved it, especially in light of my current superhero movie overload.
Yes it’s more serious, no it’s not as colourful as your typical Marvel movie, but it’s a refreshing change to the more familiar Marvel characters we’ve been force-fed (but loved) this past ten years or so.
It has a decent story, interesting new characters and great performances from a surprising and extremely diverse cast (more on that shortly).
The standout for me was Richard Madden who I thought was brilliant as Ikaris! My favourite character was Phastos, played by Brian Tyree Henry and although Angelina Jolie’s Thena doesn’t do much for a lot of the movie she makes up for it towards the end. The comic relief is provided by Kumail Nanjiani (Central Intelligence) who plays Kingo, and the whole team is led by British actress, Gemma Chan who interestingly played a completely different character in another MCU movie, Captain Marvel (2019).
The visual effects are impressive and it features some eye-pleasing filming locations, not to mention some great action sequences.
One of the main criticisms I’ve heard about this film is regarding the pacing and about how it keeps jumping forward and backward in time. I can honestly say I don’t get what all the fuss is about. Yes it does travel back and forth but not to the extent where it’s hard to follow. I never lost my place with the story once.
It also got criticised for its run time (around 2 and a half hours) but again, it wasn’t something I was particularly aware of. I was too into the movie to worry about how long was left. I just think some critics feel the need to find things wrong with a movie - after all, negativity and controversy sells!
Another thing I’ve seen written about this movie (this time by the general film-watching public) is how obviously “woke” it is. I’d be lying if I said that these days when I watch a film I don’t point out all of the attempts the film has made to “tick certain boxes” and this one seemingly ticks them all.
I think it’s good that films are becoming more diverse but I roll my eyes occasionally when it seems like it’s forced in to please people rather than to serve the story.
I noticed from the image on Disney+ that this movie had a very diverse cast and it goes even deeper that once the characters get explored throughout the film. I honestly can’t say though that other than noticing that Disney had chosen to make this movie super inclusive (no pun intended), it affected my enjoyment of the film in any way, regardless of whether or not it served the story.
To sum up, I really enjoyed this film.
If like me you’ve been less than excited to watch it based on negative reviews, don’t listen to them! It’s well worth a watch and this should serve as yet another reminder to me not to write off a film before I’ve actually seen it.
It’s currently streaming on Disney+.
P.S. Don’t forget to stick around for the two post credit scenes. I found the second one particularly exciting.
Seen it? Let me know your thoughts.