Listen, I have to be completely straight with you: I went into Eternals expecting a mess along the lines of 2016’s Suicide Squad. What I got instead was a film that left me feeling the same way I did at the beginning of the MCU. Eternals left me looking forward to what lies ahead. It left me wanting to learn more about these characters that I have very little background knowledge about. And that’s a great thing.
Eternals was a massive undertaking for Marvel Studios. To pick such a complicated comic series and try to, in one film, introduce ten characters, and give their back story, and give an explanation as to why we haven’t seen any of them prior to this is crazy. But, they did it. We are introduced to these celestial beings and told their purpose and their backstory in a way that doesn’t feel forced. Screenwriters Patrick Burleigh, Ryan Firpo, and screenwriter/director Chloe Zhao did a wonderful job with this, I felt.
The performances by the actors were all solid. However, I must say that I appreciated Angelina Jolie’s performance the most. She was perfectly understated. Often times, when big name stars are cast in ensemble films with smaller known actors, the better known ones tend to either steal the show or be the driving force. But, that was not the case. Eternals feels like a true ensemble film.
Most critics will dislike a film if the tone is all over the place. In fact, I usually fall into that category. However, there is a tone change in Eternals that is much needed. The film begins serious enough. But, as the film goes on, there is a tonal shift, and there’s more of a lighthearted air to it. Which I liked and thought worked well here. Also, when I went to see the film, I was expecting horrible pacing, with the run time being two hours and thirty six minutes. But, that again was not the case. I felt that the pacing was fine. I was intrigued for the entirety of the film’s run time. Not once did it feel like I had been sitting in the theater for more than ninety minutes.
Now that I’ve seen the film and was able to establish my own opinions about it, do I think it deserves the title of “worst Marvel film”? Absolutely not. Not when there’s Thor: The Dark World just floating around out there, ready to ruin my day at any possible turn. My honest opinion is that we have a film with a Asian female director and that is very much not liked within some of the “comic/geek” community. Is it the majority? No. These folks just happen to be the loudest. They’re the same group of people who have a problem with one of the Eternals being gay. And they’re the same group of people harping on about “forced diversity”. Like, shut the hell up. It’s nice to see people who aren’t white men on my movie screen in my superhero movie.
Chloe Zhao did a tremendous job with this film, considering how much she was taking on. Eternals was no easy feat. And it leaves me excited for what’s to come.