Comic fans and symbiotes alike, it’s time to return to the theaters for Venom: Let There Be Carnage! Tom Hardy and director Andy Serkis have resurrected the MCU adjacent anti-hero for another adventure in comedy, property destruction, and franchise building. However, you probably already knew that, as you’ve clicked onto this article to answer a long standing question: to 3D or not to 3D?
If you’re wondering about whether or not Venom: Let There Be Carnage is worth seeing, that’s something our own Eric Eisenberg covered in his official review for the film. But if you’re wondering if Eddie Brock’s second outing is worth the extra 3D money, or if you’re better off buying the latest print edition of The Daily Bugle, this is the place to be. Let’s see what’s in store for moviegoers who choose to see Venom: Let There Be Carnage in 3D!
FIT SCORE - 5/5
For the most part, the superhero genre is pretty much predisposed to being a good fit. As the format of 3D has been returning to theaters, things got off to a slightly rocky start for the comic genre. Eventually, movies like Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings have shown that projects in this realm of cinema are back on the level they once were when it came to fitting in the world of 3D. With symbiotes throwing objects all over the place and projecting themselves throughout any given scene, Venom: Let There Be Carnage adds just the right amount of excitement to make it a perfect 3D fit. But does it live up to that sort of hype?
PLANNING & EFFORT - 3/5
The original Venom was not a fun experience in 3D. Between the extremely dim picture and the visually sporadic editing, it was an example of how not to execute a 3D conversion. Venom: Let There Be Carnage is both an improvement on its predecessor, but also a repeat offender in some cases. Most notably, the sequel has the same problem with brightness as its older sibling did. The good news is that there’s more planning and effort seen in the editing department, with the 3D experience benefitting from clearer images; so there’s a marked difference on display. Also, whoever was in charge of this conversion actually allowed the mid-credits scene to be shown in 3D as well, so a little extra credit comes from that decision.
BEFORE THE WINDOW - 3/5
Another improvement that Venom: Let There Be Carnage sees in its 3D conversion is the usage of the Before the Window factor. One huge disappointment with that first film was the fact that despite having certain moments primed for optimal eye-popping thrills, it didn’t take advantage of that fact. While it’s not as consistently used as one would hope from, again, with a movie where tentacles and objects are flying around in combat, there are some really standout moments in Venom: Let There Be Carnage. Highlights of this segment include Carnage’s introduction, with a nice and fearful closeup on a roaring symbiote, as well as some impressive rain effects on a fateful bike ride for Venom and Eddie.
BEYOND THE WINDOW - 5/5
Once again, the strengths in the Before/Beyond the Window factor lie within the Beyond portion of the Venom cinematic franchise. With Venom: Let There Be Carnage, the depth of picture is the star of the show, for sure. Early scenes of Eddie Brock visiting Cletus Kasady in jail show off some brilliant depth work, thanks to the grates of his various cells helping really portray the separation between Eddie and Cletus. Also, like The Martian and Free Guy before it, Venom: Let There Be Carnage portrays something like merely watching footage on a monitor with a special layer of depth. Whether it’s the back alleys of San Francisco, or Eddie and Cletus having a heart to heart, this is a visually deep conversion.
BRIGHTNESS SCORE - 3/5
As previously mentioned, the brightness shown in Venom: Let There Be Carnage is a vast improvement from Venom’s dreary looking picture. There’s still a fair amount of grey washing at work, but you can actually watch the movie with 3D glasses and not be in the dark as to what’s going on! Though, as usual, your mileage may vary when it comes to the brightness factor, as part of the equation is how well your theater of choice calibrates its equipment. In the screening attended for this evaluation, the brightness was a noticeable drawback, but not enough to kill the experience.
GLASSES OFF SCORE - 5/5
Score another win for Venom: Let There Be Carnage, as the blurry nature of the film’s picture definitely matches the work done on getting the depth of picture absolutely perfect. You’ll notice this factor when taking your glasses off, as typically the image that is shown on the screen in a 3D movie is a blurred field of vision that, thanks to polarized lenses, creates a three dimensional image. Venom: Let There Be Carnage blurs those lines to the point where you can trace the effect down to the very point it gives way to the usual 2D anchor points.
AUDIENCE HEALTH - 4/5
Even with the brightness taking a hit, the audience’s eyes won’t be strained too hard when watching Venom: Let There Be Carnage. It’s definitely an annoying deficit, which stands out during sequences of fire and Carnage’s crimson form being shown off on screen. But if you’re worried about feeling tired after watching this briskly paced film, there’s nothing to be afraid of. It’s not taxing on the eye, but it’s definitely disappointingly distracting.
FINAL VERDICT - 28/35
Venom: Let There Be Carnage is an ok 3D conversion that makes as much of an improvement on presenting itself in the third dimension as it did in choosing what story to tell as a sequel. But some of the same mistakes are made in the quest for such improvements, which leaves this as a presentation reserved as a must see only for die hard 3D fans. Still, if you find yourself with a 3D showing as the only option, you could do worse than seeing Venom: Let There Be Carnage in that very format. But that’s highly unlikely, as judging by the 3D showtimes available, this one’s going to be a bit difficult to come by.
Be sure to visit our full To 3D Or Not To 3D Archive.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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