Eternals ★★★★

Seen at Scotiabank

I straight up had zero interest in seeing this. I didn’t think it was going to be bad or anything but the trailer just looked like average MCU stuff except directed by Chloe Zhao and the runtime was doing it no favours. 

But hey, I really enjoyed it. Straight up one of the best MCU movies, easily. Have not been this invested in MCU characters since GOTG Vol. 2. Took me a little bit of time to get into it, but once I did I had a really good time. 

I didn’t love the cast at first but as they grew into their characters and the characters grew themselves I ended up really enjoying all of them. The story is super simple but the themes and emotional core work better than anything we’ve seen in the MCU lately. It’s nothing amazing, but it’s incredibly refreshing for the series. 

While it does generally look better than most MCU films, I really was not a big fan of the cinematography or design aspects of the movie. I didn’t like how the powers looked and I really wasn’t a fan of the costumes. Zhao and her DP use a very similar visual style here as she did in Nomadland, and while heavy use of medium-close 45 degree angle shots of people’s faces work good in semi-documentary and improvised work, they don’t really work as well in a movie like this. I swear more than half the film is shot using these angles, certainly every single dialogue scene, and it really takes the impact out of a lot of moments. It’s ironic, given how boringly shot MCU films typically are. This one is boring in a different way. 

It’s a testament to the emotional and thematic weight of the film that I enjoyed it as much as I did despite my issues with it visually. I didn’t even care for the action very much. I just had a good time getting to know these characters.

Jamie liked this review