After a year without Marvel movies in theaters, Disney is making up for lost time. Today we're getting our third of the year with Eternals, with Spider-man: No Way Home still to come next month. Eternals introduces us to a new band of heroes: immortal beings who watch over the earth, but never interfere with the events they witness (in case you're wondering why they didn't help out with fictional events like Thanos erasing half of the galaxy, or real events like World War II...) If you enjoy constant dumps of exposition you're going to love this movie.
Eternals attempts what Guardians of the Galaxy succeeded at-- introducing a whole new band of characters into the Marvel universe outside of the initial Avengers team and expanding the scope of its cinematic world. Unfortunately, Eternals is not so fortunate in achieving that same end. Let's just get this out of the way...Eternals is riddled with problems and is without a doubt a bottom of the barrel Marvel movie.
For starters these characters are boring, thinly drawn and utterly lifeless. There are so many of them and yet I couldn't bring myself to care about a single one. That's a big problem in a movie that proclaims its stakes are so high yet feel so pointless in the grand Marvel scheme of things. I do not have any desire to spend time with them again in any future installments. It's not that they didn't assemble a nice cast, the talent is there--but no one seems to want to be there. You'd think with Chloe Zao coming off her work that won her an Oscar in Nomadland would inspire more enthusiasm than this, but alas.
The other big problem here is that it's bloated and overlong. A good half hour needed to be trimmed from this to keep the proceedings more lively. Some scenes are redundant, others are dull. But most of all it's a convoluted mess that over and over seems to break the cardinal film sin: show don't tell. If you have to constantly tell your audience that it's okay these heroes exist and never helped before...maybe you need to ask yourself if this is really a story worth telling.