The new Marvel film, “Venom 2: Let There Be Carnage,” doesn’t live up to expectations. PHOTO CREDIT: imbd.com

This movie, directed by actor-director Andy Serkis, is just alright. It is the epitome of a standard superhero/villain movie, though the banter between Eddie Brock and his alien symbiote Venom, both played by Tom Hardy, is entertaining and further expanded upon the relationship continued from the first movie, which was released in 2018. 

Venom and Brock argue a lot throughout this movie in a way that you might expect your grandparents to ‒‒ except these arguments are more so about not letting Venom eat people, so then again, maybe not.

The CGI in this movie is more in-depth than the first movie, as Venom’s tendrils as he sprouts out of Brock seem to pulsate and move with his muscles. Serkis wanted to do more with the CGI here, as Brock and Venom have more one-on-one conversations in this film to build their repertoire.

A difference between “Venom 2: Let There Be Carnage” and “Venom” is that Venom’s character has more lines of dialogue in the sequel. Here, his character is developed further, and we see the conflict between him and Brock over whether he should be hidden away from the world or not as the movie’s throughline. 

The film centers around Brock’s life, in which he is struggling personally as his career stalls and his ex-fiance is engaged once again to another man. As we catch Brock in the thralls of his alien symbiote, serial killer Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson) reaches out to him for an exclusive story before he is executed via electric chair. 

Before he can make it to the chair though, Kasady obtains (through means I will not spoil) his own alien symbiote, Carnage. This symbiote is more maniacal and unkempt than Venom as Kasady struggles to control him. 

Another throughline in this movie centers around Kasady’s lover from the beginning of the movie and his childhood, Frances Barrison, also known as Shriek (Naomie Harris). She has the power to let out a “shriek” that incapacitates those around her and severely damages the alien symbiotes who dislike high-pitched sounds. 

Harris’ character seems underserved and underutilized in the film, which left me unimpressed. I think she could have been used more and written better as she seems to be a lady-in-waiting type of character who doesn’t really have a voice of her own. 

Honestly, this movie would’ve been better served as a rated-R movie with darker undertones to best serve the characters. For a movie with “carnage” in its title, there really isn’t much gore or brutal action in it. 

The one thing that made paying for the ticket for “Venom 2: Let There Be Carnage” worth it for me was the middle credits scene, so be sure to look out for that. However, there is not a post-credits scene at the very end of the movie’s run time, as one might expect from a Marvel film. 

If you’re looking for a fun blockbuster superhero movie to see this fall and can’t get tickets to “Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” grab some tickets to “Venom 2: Let there be Carnage” and turn your brain off. 5.5/10.