Our Spoiler-Free Review of Marvel Studios’ ‘Eternals‘. As one of the most ambitious MCU franchise launches to date, Eternals has had to fight for the attention amidst the release of several huge Marvel movies this year including Black Widow, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Spider-Man: No Way Home and several Disney+ series, so how did it fare compared to these more popular titles?
First and foremost, I want to say that many opinions in the press seem to stem from unfamiliarity or extreme familiarity with the comic books. Those who love the standard depictions of characters such as Ajak and Makkari as male characters do have a right to be upset about the genderswapping, BUT (and this is a BIG BUT) that does not reflect on the performances by either Salma Hayek (Ajak) and Lauren Ridloff (Makkari). Both actresses brought their respective characters to life with their unique personalities and helped to tell a story about a forged family navigating their purposes in life and should be honored as such.
For those who were unfamiliar with the lore behind the Eternals, or seem to have a problem with this being a literal origin story for thousands of years worth of content in the MCU, several critics claimed the movie has a slow burn and didn’t feature enough action. Honestly, this is a load of bull-you-know-what. The film features prominent battle scenes and is balanced with character development and exchanges which featuring a 12-person cast is bound to feel “a bit dry” for some viewers who aren’t invested in the story. The movie also doesn’t shy away from featuring the intricacies of life, love, and family, which have been featured in many Marvel movies before this one so I truly don’t understand the problems people seem to have with Eternals specifically.
Now, (and finally) onto my personal opinion outside of the opinion of others. Eternals features one of the largest leading casts to date. There is no such thing as a small role in this film. Every cast member expertly brings us into their own world and makes us want to learn more about their respective Eternal and their abilities. The cinematography was stunning and The Deviants were unlike anything we have seen before in the MCU, giving an immediate sense of danger and urgency that helps the story to progress. The movie features several twists and turns and is a more honest depiction of a familial relationship than many “found family” references we have seen in the MCU.
Sometimes family loves each other, but it can get messy or complicated. Sometimes people with the same mission do not get along and sometimes secrets can come between even the closest of people causing them to grow apart. These human characteristics were not shied away from in the story and made the character more relatable. Chloe Zhao did an excellent job capturing these little moments and interactions that kept things balanced throughout and left us eager for more from the Eternals as the MCU moves forward. We are also introduced to a couple of new heroes who don’t take away from the Eternals spotlight, and we are excited to learn more about them in the near future.
TL:DR version, if you are interested in seeing Eternals and are invested in the story I recommend seeing it in theaters this weekend to prevent spoilers. We laughed, we cried, and we were left with our jaws hanging several times at the sheer scope of the film and will happily watch it again in the future. Marvel fans are definitely not going to want to miss their chance to see this in theaters.
The outstanding ensemble cast includes Gemma Chan as humankind-loving Sersi, Richard Madden as the all-powerful Ikaris, Kumail Nanjiani as cosmic-powered Kingo, Lia McHugh as the eternally young, old-soul Sprite, Brian Tyree Henry as the intelligent inventor Phastos, Lauren Ridloff as the super-fast Makkari, Barry Keoghan as aloof loner Druig, Don Lee as the powerful Gilgamesh, Kit Harington as Dane Whitman, with Salma Hayek as the wise and spiritual leader Ajak, and Angelina Jolie as the fierce warrior Thena.
Chloé Zhao directs the film, and Kevin Feige and Nate Moore are the producers, with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, and Kevin de la Noy serving as executive producers. The screen story is by Ryan Firpo & Kaz Firpo, and the screenplay is by Chloé Zhao and Chloé Zhao & Patrick Burleigh and Ryan Firpo & Kaz Firpo.
Check out the trailer below for Marvel Studios ‘Eternals’ and go see it in theaters when you can!
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Featured Photo Credit: Marvel Studios