Eternals, the next chapter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, had its LA premiere, and inevitably the critics are circling like vultures. Friendly vultures though because, for the most part, critics enjoyed director Chloé Zhao’s first foray into action movies calling it “epic” and “amazing”.
Fandango’s Erik Davies had perhaps the best reaction to the science fiction movie calling it “spectacularly weird and rich”. “Marvel’s Eternals is spectacularly weird & rich with a new MCU mythology that makes it feel separate from everything else,” he tweeted. “It’s honestly refreshing. There’s a bittersweetness to the film that you feel in its sunset shots – a definite Chloé Zhao touch. It is soulful & thoughtful.”
Other critics were similarly positive. LA film critic Courtney Howard described the film as an “evocative, emotional, extraordinarily epic superhero film”. Meanwhile, Screenrant’s Ash Crossan was delighted by how “surprisingly funny” the movie was, adding: “[The Eternals] felt quite different than where we’ve been — almost forgot we were in the MCU at times.” It’s worth pointing out that first reactions are usually full of praise (even David Ayer’s Suicide Squad got rave reviews at first) so take these reactions with a small pinch of salt.
Check out a selection of reactions below.
Eternals is Marvel’s version of Zack Snyder’s Justice League. A film that builds upon a cast of unknown characters and does so with great success. Chloé Zhao direction is superb. Easily one of the best looking Marvel films of all time. Insane post credits scenes too. #Eternals pic.twitter.com/TbZlqPJxGQ
— Scott Menzel (@ScottDMenzel) October 19, 2021
Holy crap – Eternals is a freaking MASTERPIECE!!! Packed with adrenaline right from the start, but also filled with lots of heart & humor! So many MCU firsts!! Your mind will be BLOWN! Nods to comics but a totally unique story. Those end credits are GAME CHANGERS!! #Eternals pic.twitter.com/jKiMJukn4S
— Tessa Smith – Mama's Geeky (@MamasGeeky) October 19, 2021
Just got out of #Eternals. I've never been so invested in a story. It was cinematically beautiful. I was engaged the entire time. There's a lot to ingest but they do such a great job to process it all. This feels so different from the MCU, like it's own universe. I loved it.
— Lauraaaahhh!!! A Ghost! ลอร'า 劳拉 (@lsirikul) October 19, 2021
— Patton Oswalt (@pattonoswalt) October 19, 2021
It’s grand in scope & has consequences that will reverberate throughout the #MCU but it’s also completely about the characters & how they relate to each other. @MarvelStudios 1/ pic.twitter.com/RwEMTz0aw0
— POC Culture (@POC_Culture) October 19, 2021
#Eternals is one of Marvel’s most ambitious films. Epic in scope, lavishly shot, and totally unapologetic about how much lore it dumps on you.
Terrific cast, great direction, and delightfully comic book-y. Def not for everyone, but these are Jack Kirby’s space gods done right. pic.twitter.com/fsuexvcTwY
— Dan Casey (@DanCasey) October 19, 2021
Not everyone loved the movie, though. Matt Neglia of Next Best Picture expressed his disappointment with the film. “Aside from a few dazzling moments & a wonderfully diverse cast, Eternals disappointed me,” he tweeted. “The story is an expository convoluted mess as it jumps through time & multiple continents with an uneven tone. Ramin Djawadi’s score soars, but Chloé Zhao’s distinctive style is sadly absent.”
IndieWire’s chief film critic, David Ehrlich, was similarly disappointed with Eternals sharing on social media that despite the movie feeling like the least MCU movie so far, it still boils down to “misfit spandex people fighting bad CG for 3 hours”. Why do we get the feeling Ehrlich’s not an MCU fan?
Boasting an all-star cast, the Eternals tells the story of a group of heroes who were tasked by the godlike Celestials with observing humanity’s development and protecting us from the Deviants, a group of evil aliens hell-bent on our destruction.
The Eternals fly into cinemas on November 5.