I finally got around to watching the Venom movie last night, and despite all the negativity I heard about it prior to its release I found that I enjoyed it. Perhaps I have a bit of bias towards it though, as growing up Venom was always my favourite superhero comicbook character. If you’ve read any of my other comicbook related posts, you’d notice that I don’t generally read superhero comics, it’s mostly scifi, crime, fantasy, or horror. But I did read a bit back when I was younger and Venom was, and still is, my favourite. And given the entertainment value these days of the Marvel and DC movies, I do find myself catching the odd superhero movie from time to time. Some I enjoy like Spiderman Homecoming or The Dark Knight Returns, and some are clear misses. So when Venom got his own movie of course I had to watch it as I felt the Venom in Spiderman 2 simply didn’t do him justice.
I’m not wanting to write a thorough review or recommendation on the movie, but I’d say it was overall good. I really like that Venom was actually portrayed as a larger than human beast for starters. I felt it also captured his character well too, a bit sarcastic and somewhat comedic. I was originally worried after the trailer that there would be very little scenes with Venom actually in it and that most of it would rely on his voice due to a potentially low CGI budget. But I felt it sufficed with his screen time too, which I was happy to see (though it could have used a bit more Riot). The actions scenes were decent as well so not much in terms of complaints there either. The movie is not without its flaws, story wasn’t amazing though it wasn’t terrible. Some acting was a bit cheesy too but nothing that ruined the whole movie. And maybe it could’ve been rated R instead too. All in all it wasn’t mind blowing or amazing, but it was good enough to enjoy even if you’re not a Venom fan.
But that’s not the point of this post.
After professional critics gave it poor reviews and online discussions were already shitting on the movie, I was going into the movie with low expectations and preloaded disappointment. After enjoying it I found myself asking just how terrible my choice in movies must be. So out of curiosity I checked out the Metacritic page for the movie and found that I’m not alone.
That is quite the difference between the two numbers. Most viewers like it, and the critics said it was garbage. I’m not sure if the critics jumped on the negative bandwagon prior to release, or if they were solely being pretentious because of the type of movie it is. Either way I felt the critics were out of touch on this one.
This can also happen in reverse. When the next SimCity game after SimCity 4 came out in 2013, I was excited for it. After seeing a video demo of the game, both I and the SimCity Reddit community were really looking forward to its release. Reviewers were giving it 90+ on Metacritic too so the hype was very real. Then it hit the shelves and boy did it suck. It also didn’t help that EA presented the game as something else than what was released and their damaged control of the situation was awful. As of today the player reviews are totaling a whopping 2.2 out of 10. Again the critics were way out to lunch, or possibly bribed for a high review who knows.
Almost all art and media are subjective, it’s really up to the viewer to enjoy or detest. Take professional reviews with a grain of salt and be skeptical at times. If you are curious about watching, listening, playing, or making something, only take reviews into account but don’t let them hold back and your exploration of it, then make your own call. If you liked it great and don’t worry about what others think of your tastes. If you don’t like it, you may have learned something from trying it out anyways.