Why You Should Watch Eternals


Allison Asimbaya , Contributing Writer

Finally, the long-awaited Marvel film Eternals has been released in theaters. The film was released theatrically on November 5th, 2021; it runs for two hours and 37 minutes. It was directed by Chloe Zhao, who won two Oscars for Best Director and Best Picture at the 2021 Oscars for her other film, Nomadland. This film included a diverse all-star cast featuring Salma Hayek, Angelina Jolie, Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Lia McHugh, Brian Tyree Henry, Lauren Ridloff, Don Lee, Barry Keoghan, and Kit Harrington.

Just by reading the list of the cast members and the director’s name, you already know this film is going to be amazing. However, that is not the case for Eternals. Before we can answer the question, we need to understand what the film is entirely about.

The film introduces us to the Eternals, who are ten superpowered beings sent to earth in 5000 BC. Each eternal has its unique set of powers and abilities that differentiate from each other. The Celestial Arishem sends them to exterminate deviants and not involved in earthly conflicts. Once getting rid of the deviants on earth, the Eternals decide to go their separate ways. They navigate life on earth for thousands of years and throughout important world events. Fast forward after the events of Endgame, trouble arises. Sersi (Gemma Chan) and Sprite (Lia McHugh) are reunited with Ikaris (Richard Madden) after strange events start to unfold. They begin to look and eventually reunite with the rest of the Eternals. However, their leader Ajak (Salma Hayek) has passed.

With Ajak gone, Sersi becomes the leader of the Eternals and has an encounter with the Celestial Arishem. She is then told the true meaning of their mission on earth and uncovered the origins of their creation. Everything they have been told has been a lie. Which is even worse, the world will soon perish. The group is then faced with a hard decision: Either letting earth run its course into destruction or disobeying orders and ultimately saving the planet. Unfortunately, not everyone is keen on the plan. Sersi, along with Thena (Angelina Jolie), Druig (Barry Keoghan), Makkari (Lauren Ridloff), and Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry), battle it out to save humanity. With her powers, Sersi can successfully prevent the destruction of the earth with the aid of her companions. All seems to end well until Arishem demands an explanation for their disobedience. The film ends on a cliffhanger, and we will have to wait and see what will happen to the Eternals.

So what went wrong with this film? For one, the Eternals has one of the lowest scores on Rotten Tomatoes coming from the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU.) Honestly, I would ignore that because critics are primarily biased and not diverse. That’s a whole other story to talk about, but I mean this sincerely, watch this film.

First of all, this film’s cast is diverse. Talk about a lead woman of color and a POC cast in general. Lauren Ridloff’s who is deaf, was incorporated in this film for the role of Makkari. This film also has its first gay superhero, which is so important in this day and age. The MCU is filled with dozens of movies, but they have in common that they fit the mold that Eternals does not have. It is not necessarily a bad thing; sometimes, a film needs to break out. Chloe Zhao made a masterpiece with this film. She could’ve easily made this film feel like your typical Marvel film and cater to its audience. She didn’t take that path, and I respect her decision.

Zhao sets a precedent for superhero films, and no one can accept that. In my opinion, it doesn’t feel like a Marvel film, and I enjoyed that. I think the audience can get too comfortable with franchises such as Marvel that when they experience change, they can’t accept it. They are quick to deem it as a bad film. It reminds me of The Last Jedi, directed by Rian Johnson. The film didn’t fit into the franchise’s mold, but that’s what sets it apart from other Star Wars films. Also, I don’t know if it is also that people cannot stand a gay superhero or deaf woman playing a hero. To remind everyone, this is the future of Marvel and its future phase to come. We need more directors like Zhao to redefine this franchise. I, for one, enjoyed this film and its bonus clips. Eternals uncovers a much bigger picture; its storyline is much bigger than the avengers. Once again, please watch this film and support movie theaters.