Eternals the Movie... (Spoiler Free)

Marvel fans...this one is for you!  I sent the number one Marvel fan in our house to the early screening of Disney's Eternals, and these are his thoughts.  Over to you Dr. Daddy!

My number one thought after leaving this movie was, WOW.  I don't know how they continue to knock it out of the park, but Disney continues their string of entertaining action movies. Eternals was exciting, develops a large cast of characters enough to make you care about not only "saving the Earth," but also each of their arcs through the movie. Eternals has its lighthearted moments, but these are breaks from an overall more serious tone. It also has enough back story to allow it to stand alone for someone new to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Eternals will be in theaters on November 5, 2021.

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Cliched, bottom line Eternals the movie review: Incredible, seat-of-your pants action, compelling character, and world-ending stakes make this a must-see addition for MCU fans.

Should your kiddo watch? 

The movie earns its PG-13 rating with one strongly sexual scene, a handful of curse words scattered throughout the movie, and very intense action sequences with on-scene deaths. The gore, in keeping with the MCU, is not gratuitous, but could be intense for younger viewers. The Deviant monsters could be nightmare fuel for children second grade and below.

Eternals Background: 

Eternals is set on present day Earth within the standard Marvel Cinematic Universe. Earth is recovering from Thanos' "Blip." A team of heroes, the Eternals, arrived on earth in 5000 BC to protect humanity from a race of predators called the Deviants. The Eternals' exploits over the millennia wove them into the fabric of human mythology. Babylonian, Egyptian, and Aztec flashbacks show the deep connection between the Eternals' mission and humanity's history.

The cast and crew:

Eternals has a knockout cast. The team itself can be grouped into the serious ones and the funny ones. On the serious side, Selma Hayek leads the team as Ajak, a healer. The Greek goddess Athena emerged from Angelina Jolie's warrior, Thena. Gemma Chan (Serse) can change an object's form (you see her turn a bus into a cloud of rose petals in one of the trailers. Richard Madden (Ikaris) is accepted as the strongest of the group with his ability to fly and shoot lasers from his eyes (VERY Superman). Makkari's (Lauren Ridloff) super-speed and Barry Keoghan (Druig) with mind-control round out the "serious" Eternals. 

The "funny" Eternals bring a humanity to the team. Kumail Nanjiani (Kingo) can fire energy pulses from his hands. Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) is the inventor. His methods and tools are reminiscent of Tony Stark. Sprite (Lia McHugh) is the eternal child with the power of illusion. Finally, Ma Dong-Seok plays a hard-punching Gilgamesh who is the instigator and butt of a lot of the humor when the team is together. 

Eternals does not have many plot-involved characters beyond the main team. One glorious exception is Harish Patel's Karun, valet to the Eternal Kingo (himself a comic relief by a very buff Kumail Nanjiani). Karun provides a dignified and humorous viewpoint of a mere mortal among the super-hero posturing and world-shattering decisions surrounding the Eternals. 

Minor spoiler:  For you Game of Thrones fans, Jon Snow (Kit Harington playing Dane Whitman) and Robb Stark (Richard Madden) share the screen again!

Director ChloƩ Zhao does an excellent job introducing completely new characters and backstories to hit the balance between making you know why you should care about these heroes while leaving plenty of movie to move a compelling plot forward. Eternals has very little familiar ground within the MCU to reference, but a novice should be able to jump right in.

You should see Eternals in IMAX!

There are some jaw dropping, exciting scenes!

We saw the movie in IMAX. The huge screen combined with incredible sound made each fight scene a breathtaking as each member of the team has their own strength or skill used in combination to battle the roaring Deviant Eternals villains. I had to hold my 11-year-old's hand a few times (not just for her!) when the stakes were super-high.  The movie's soundtrack was incredible as it underscored stark scene transitions and lived up to the cataclysmic events on the screen. 

The messaging in Eternals is on point and never preachy. 

The human capacity for good and evil, gender equality, same-sex relationships and parenting, and a deaf super-hero are building blocks to the story, not the message of the story. 

And, yes, you need to stay in the theater until to bitter end to see two end-credits scenes that tease future characters in the MCU.

That one is mostly for my wife, who starts packing up immediately  Overall, another excellent addition to the MCU. Along with Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Phase 4 of the MCU is off to an exciting start. We can't wait to see it again, in IMAX, with the whole family.  Are you planning on watching the Eternals movie?  

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