The Eternals is a superhero film based on the Marvel comics of the same name. Marvel Studios produced the 25th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film is directed by Chloe Zhao, and the script was written by Matthew and Ryan Firpo. Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Lauren Ridloff, Brian Tyree Henry, Salma Hayek, and Kit Harington star in the lead roles.
It tells the story of a battle between Eternals and Deviants. The Eternals, an immortal alien race created by celestials, have been protecting the human race from their evil counterparts, the deviants, for 7000 years.
Cast & Crew:
Chloe Zhao| Director
Kevin Feige| Producer
Matthew k. Firpo| Screen Play
Ryan Firpo| Screen Play
Jack Kirby | Story
Angelina Jolie| Actor
Richard Madden| Actor
Kumail Nanjiani| Actor
Kit Harington| Actor
Brain Tyree Henry| Actor
Salma Hayek| Actor
Lia McHugh| Actor
Don Lee| Actor
Barry Keoghan| Actor
Gemma Chan| Actor
Director Chloé Zhao imprints “Eternals” with her distinct aesthetic, but she can only do so much to bend the Marvel Cinematic Universe to her will. As a result, the film is a blockbuster of unusual gentle beauty that also struggles to meet the gargantuan requirements of a massive action spectacle.
In a nutshell, it’s a disaster. It is also 2 hours and 37 minutes long, which I cannot emphasize enough. Despite this, because the talented, diverse cast is so large and so much world-building must take place, “Eternals” ultimately feels rushed and unsatisfying. The mythology in this film is both dense and frequently ridiculous, with the film stopping around the one-hour mark for a lengthy information dump. You may still be perplexed. By the end, you may still be confused about what’s going on, but you may also not care.
Zhao, the newly minted Academy Award winner for Best Picture and Director for the spare and intimate “Nomadland,” does, however, show much of her signature style. Those of you who were intrigued by Zhao’s choice and wondered what her version of the MCU would look like will be relieved to learn that she succeeds From a breezy sunset on the shores of ancient Babylon to ominous storm clouds gathering on the plains of present-day South Dakota, she discovers magic hour wherever she goes. Working with cinematographer Ben Davis, who also shot “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Doctor Strange,” and “Captain Marvel,” she consistently allows us to slow down, take a breath, and enjoy a moment of naturalism and stillness. The sunbaked heat of the windy Australian outback is palpable. A nighttime action scene set in a torch-lit forest is especially beautiful.
They, unfortunately, do not last long. Because there’s a large, raucous comic book beast to feed.
Zhao and her co-writers Patrick Burleigh, Ryan Firpo, and Kaz Firpo lurch around in time in an ungainly manner to tell the story of a group of immortal beings who live secretly on Earth. Each has unique abilities, but they all share the quick wit that has become so prevalent in Marvel films. The casting and characteristics on display here are revolutionary and, at first, glance, give us hope that we’re in for something completely different. Natural diversity is at work in ways we haven’t seen from the Avengers, for example. The inclusive nature of “Eternals” feels both exciting and effortless, from the leadership of Salma Hayek’s Ajak and Gemma Chan’s Sersi to Brian Tyree Henry and Haaz Sleiman as a gay couple with a young son to Lauren Ridloff’s Makkari, whose superpower is hearing loss. Angelina Jolie’s Thena is a fierce warrior who also suffers from mental illness, which is handled sensitively in the film. Lia McHugh, on the other hand, enlivens the proceedings as the androgynous, eternally young Sprite.
Perhaps most notably, two characters have actual sex, which is unprecedented and long overdue in a cinematic world where everyone is super-hot, muscular, and dressed in form-fitting costumes. The scene is brief, but it accomplishes a lot in conveying a deeper and more vulnerable sense of humanity in these comic book characters. Tony Stark and Pepper Potts were most likely responsible. Clint Barton most emphatically did because he had children. However, most other romantic relationships have featured benign flirting at best, so seeing these characters act like adults in this manner is yet another example of the potential that lurks within “Eternals.”
However, there is a plot that will leave your mind as quickly as it entered. In a nutshell, the Eternals have dispersed throughout the world in the centuries since they arrived on Earth in a spaceship resembling a massive, black marble Dorito. They’ve been quietly guiding humanity and fighting ravenous, sinewy monsters known as Deviants all along. However, a potentially cataclysmic event forces them to abandon the comfortable lives they’ve built for themselves, reassemble (if you’ll excuse the pun), and use their combined superpowers to avert what is essentially apocalypse. Again! To follow “Eternals,” you don’t need to be well-versed in Marvel lore in general or Jack Kirby’s trippy comic series in particular. Aside from a brief mention of Thanos and why these heroes didn’t intervene to prevent the events of “Avengers: Infinity War,” this feels more like a stand-alone film than the majority of the MCU. However, if you’re a fan, you’ll get more out of the movie, and the obligatory end-credits sequences will mean even more to you.
As centuries-old, on-again lovers, Chan’s Sersi, with her Trans mutational abilities, and Richard Madden’s Ikaris, a versatile, Superman-type figure, star prominently. As endearing as Madden is, Chan has more chemistry with Kit Harington, who plays Sersi’s mortal, London-based boyfriend, Dane Whitman, who shares Sersi’s interest in archaeology. Whatever emotional stakes these characters may have, flying around and zapping monsters with eye lasers takes precedence. You can feel the strain of trying to juggle everything. And the climactic action sequence is so glossy and cacophonous that it could have been plucked from any number of soulless sci-fi spectacles from the previous decade, suffocating everything in its path. the smaller charms we’d enjoyed along the way.
As a pompous Bollywood star, a newly buff Kumail Nanjiani provides some laughs, Don Lee provides a kind presence despite his hulking power, and Barry Keoghan only has to show up to make us feel his unnerving vibe. All of these actors demonstrate that they are up for the challenge of establishing complex characters within the frenzy of the MCU machinery. Regrettably, they—and Zhao—can only function as cogs.