Eternals Early Buzz: A Sprawling, Sweeping Superhero Movie Unlike Any Other — Or A Complicated Mess

With how much time fans have spent waiting for the latest iteration of the MCU, it's clear everyone is going to have their opinions about "Eternals." Chloe Zhao's first foray as a writer-director for the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been highly anticipated since after Kevin Feige announced Marvel Studio were pursuing a screen version of Jack Kirby's 1976 comics in 2018. In the film, which premiered in Los Angeles on October 18, the Eternals are revealed as an immortal alien race that have emerged from hiding after thousands of years. Why? They are called to protect Earth from their evil counterparts, the Deviants. Seems simple enough, right? According to the early eyes on the film, it isn't exactly that cut and dry, but what is in the world of movies, right?

Last night, social media reactions started rolling in from critics who were lucky enough to catch the latest MCU installment during its premiere — and it seems that while a lot of folks were on board with Zhao's beautiful and nearly serene directing style, the very same that won her several Oscars for "Nomadland," others were underwhelmed by the approach despite the movie's apparent successes.

Eternals Early Buzz

First off, /Film's own Hoai-Tran Bui wasn't afraid to compare the high sci-fi elements and Zhao's now-classic naturalistic style to that of the upcoming "Dune," which will be available to fans in theaters and on HBO Max on demand on October 22.

/Film's Peter Sciretta also had "complicated thoughts" about the film — namely about its "big swings" and even its tendencies to come off more DC than Marvel (which might shock some die-hards of either franchise).

/Film writer Jeff Ewing was similarly lukewarm on the film, especially its poor pacing.

Indiewire's David Ehrlich understood the scope of the film, but still felt it was giving tacky green screen vibes regardless.

Discussing Film's Andrew Salazar felt the film was "a lot," but seemed pleased with its ability to hit some major benchmarks, including legitimate LGBTQ representation.

The Hollywood Reporter writer Brian Davids and Fandango writer Erik Davis made sure to highlight how integral Zhao's specific style was to the film's successes.'s Phase Zero host Brandon Davis was quick to spotlight specific performances in the movie, including Kumail Nanjiani, Richard Madden, and Gemma Chan.

Critics Ashley Menzel and Tessa Smith were quick to gush over the film's "game changer" of an ending credits scene.

Actor Patton Oswalt was impressed by the movie's ability to mesh "brisk storytelling AND epic scope."

POC Culture and critic Hector Navarro were excited by how much of the film focuses on the characters and their emotional lives — which feels rare for an MCU movie.

All in all, the early reviews seem mostly positive, but some folks are already thinking critically and zeroing in on the film's blind spots. No matter what, it seems certain that this film — with all its major differences to the past MCU catalogue — will create a divide in the fandom. That said, it'll be pretty fun to see all the debates go down when the film hits theaters on November 5, 2021