Ruben Fleischer’s Venom was a massively successful movie, earning in excess of $850 million at the box office after exploding onto the scene in October 2018. But was it a good film? Well, that depends entirely on who you ask. Critics didn’t seem to think so after the symbiotic Sony blockbuster wound up with a weak 30 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but audiences gifted it with a substantially higher 81 percent.
That’s a pretty big disconnect, and while Venom was painfully lacking when it came to substance, a story you could invest in, and consistent CGI, it wasn’t entirely without merit. Most of the plaudits deservedly fell on leading man Tom Hardy, who delivered a bravura turn as the sweaty, neurotic, and perennially nervous Eddie Brock—who wasn’t coping well with the fact his body was being assimilated by an alien.
In a new interview, the star admitted that he breathed a sigh of relief when the consensus determined that Venom didn’t suck. Even if it isn’t quite on a par with some of the genre’s very best efforts, Hardy was happy that the film received generally reasonable reception.
“There were other objectives with Venom, but they were minor compared to the main objective: Can I land Eddie Brock and Venom as an established Marvel superhero? Venom and Eddie Brock are part of a universal canon among those who know about superheroes, so I don’t want to scratch the record. I’d like to be part of that legacy and not bugger it up completely. Not bring shame on it. Ha! You’ve got Black Panther, Thor, Wonder Woman, Venom; there’s not one that you go, ‘Ooh God, have you seen that? That’s f*cking terrible! Avoid the f*cking terrible one!’. Maybe people dislike it, maybe people really like it, but it’s not dismissed.”
Sequel Let There Be Carnage looks to be a much better movie, with Andy Serkis taking over behind the camera, and Woody Harrelson’s post-credits cameo building towards what looks to be a wonderfully hammy turn from the actor and his ginger wig. We just need to keep our fingers crossed that it actually hits theaters on Sept. 24 as scheduled, with the most recent trailer getting fans worried after the locked in date was replaced by the vaguely disconcerting “this fall.”