Under Review: “Eternals”


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Sophomore Louis Faillace shares his opinion on the latest movie to join the MCU: “Eternals.”

Louis Faillace and Mia Hirshfeld

Marvel’s Eternals is the first new MCU film I’ve seen in theaters in almost two years. Yet as refreshing as it was to sit in a lively theater on opening night and experience the movie with other fans, the movie was not what I hoped it would be. 

After seeing Chloé Zhao’s Academy Award-winning film Nomadland last year, I was excited to see how her directorial prowess would carry over to a larger-scale project like Eternals. Similar to James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Zhao had the difficult task of introducing completely new characters into an already-established universe. Yet with such a large group of characters, the movie struggled to develop each of them individually.

The film keeps with the repetitive Marvel formula we’ve seen so much of in the last ten years. Zhao, who co-wrote the screenplay, played it too safe, incorporating overused elements such as boring CGI villains and quippy jokes which are seemingly ever-present in the MCU.

Like most MCU films, Eternals’ over-comedic nature detracts from the film’s overall quality. The script gave the impression that the writers were trying too hard to make people laugh and to include jokes that diverted from the otherwise serious tone of the movie. Kingo’s (Kumail Nanjiani) only purpose in this movie was comedic relief—he’s even removed from the dramatic final act of the film once there are no more jokes to be told.

Eternals introduces some talented additions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with actors Angelina Jolie, Kit Harington and Gemma Chan. Yet since the film focuses mainly on Sersi (Chan) and Ikaris (Richard Madden), the rest of the characters seem flat in comparison. Not every character has the emotional depth required for the viewer to become attached to them.

The film shines during its creative fight scenes when the characters display their unique superpowers to battle the Deviants, a group of extraterrestrial villains that rival the Eternals. Yet, despite being eye-catching, the villains lack depth and there are too many heroes that are underdeveloped and not interesting enough to the viewer.

Bottom line — unless you’re someone who’s really invested in the future of the MCU, this movie isn’t a must-see.

Final score: 6/10

P.S. Take our “Which Marvel Character Are You?” Quiz for even more insight into the MCU.

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Eternals is rated PG-13 for fantasy violence and action, some language and brief sexuality.

Running time: 157 minutes