Reviews for Morbius have begun to flood in and, according to critical opinion, it seems the Jared Leto-led superhero film may be one of the worst Marvel films of all time.
On Rotten Tomatoes, Morbius currently holds a 17% rating among critics, holding an average review score of 3.8/10 with 19 ‘Fresh’ reviews and 96 ‘Rotten’ ones.
Among Top Critics, this rating sinks to an even lower 16%, this time with only 6 fresh ratings across 38 critics and averaging out to a score of 3.5/10.
It should be noted that while the audience score seen in the above screenshot of Morbius’ Rotten Tomatoes page presents the film with a rotundly ‘Fresh’ score of 69% across “50+ Verified Ratings”, the film’s ‘All Audience’ score stands at 59% across 250+ ratings.
“One of the important lessons of Venom’s success was that if unimaginative superhero franchise films must be churned out, they can still feel worthwhile if they’re fueled by smart, funny performances,” wrote Polygon’s Joshua Rivera. “Morbius is what happens when there’s a studio desire for another Venom, but without much thought as to how Venom connected with anyone. It’s only there to plug into a burgeoning crossover franchise.”
Describing the film as “a misbegotten, artistically bankrupt bid by writers Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless to fuse a gothic horror edge to the MCU,” the Los Angeles Times’ Robert Daniels found the film presents both “a story without heart” and “a general allergy to detail courses through every vein.”
“Was this a real movie or just a badly made vehicle for future franchises?,” he asks in conclusion to his review. “The fact that the question needs answering says everything about the present state of Hollywood blockbusters and the lackluster quality of ‘Morbius.’”
CBR’s Sam Stone wrote, “With a nonsensical narrative, uneven pacing, and dated special effects and storytelling sensibilities, Morbius is one of the weaker licensed superhero films in recent memory and could derail Sony’s plans for their own Marvel shared universe.”
Likewise, Observer’s Emily Zemler bluntly asserted, “Unless your ticket is free, don’t bother. This movie is as lifeless as the bodies Morbius drains and throws on the floor.”
Reviewing the “lifeless” film for Den of Geek, David Crow opined that “the conflations and contortions of this mash-up exercise never feel better than rote. It’s a mechanical product constructed from the ruins of other, better movies, and all in an attempt to make a Spider-Man movie without Spider-Man.”
“In any vampire story,” he explained, “the central undead figure should be the star, even if he is an antihero. But unwilling or unable to step away from the same template as Venom and so many other superhero movie bottom-feeders, this picture’s vampire conceit is wasted for a Hot Topic variation on a movie we’ve already seen done better and, maybe, worse.”
Headlining his review “Much like its bloodthirsty hero, ‘Morbius’ loses the battle against sucking,” We Got This Covered’s Scott Campbell observed that “the execution is roughly a million miles wide of the mark, with Morbius misfiring on almost every level”.
“On a narrative level, Morbius is chaotic and messy, lurching from one scene to the next without a care in the world or even a second thought for such things as cohesion, well-rounded characters, or even an A-to-B plot that makes the smallest degree of sense or leads to any satisfying resolutions that couldn’t have been predicted by the end of the first act,” he said. “It’s another reminder that a couple of well-received movies doesn’t mean Sony has understood or learned from the mistakes that killed the last attempt to build a shared universe out from Spider-Man.”
As for the film’s few fans, The New York Times’ Manohla Dargis declared, “Morbius” is a ghoulish, suitably downbeat tale of madness, hubris, suffering and weird science set in a world that offers little solace. And while most of it is as predictably familiar as expected, it does something unusual for a movie like this: It entertains you, rather than bludgeons you into submission.”
CNN’s Brian Lowry found that Morbius was “significantly better than “Venom” but still somewhat lacking in bite, this orign story perhaps inevitably grows more pallid toward the end but until then proves just tasty enough to merit the giving it a shot.”
On fellow review aggregate site Metacritic, Morbius currently holds a Metascore of 37 between 45 critics, with 5 of those being positive, 24 mixed, and 16 negative.
“The film is nothing more than a flimsy time-killer, an early-April placeholder of a movie,” said Owen Gleiberman in his review for Variety. “It’s as trashy and underimagined as the ‘Venom’ films.”
Writing for Rolling Stone, David Fear asked, “Is Morbius the worst Marvel movie ever made?” before answering himself, “In an alternate universe without The New Mutants, the answer would likely be yes.”
“If it’s not the worst of these films, it’s certainly the most anemic,” he noted. “And even die-hard fans are apt to feel completely drained by all of it.”
At the Associated Press, Mark Kennedy described the film as “a forgettable, often laughable, entry in Sony’s attempt to fill its own Spider-Man-adjacent cinematic universe, a poorly edited, derivative time suck — pun intended.”
Left with little positive to say about the film, The Wrap’s Alonso Duralde simply put forth, “We can confirm that ‘Morbius’ is, really and truly, a movie. Granted, it’s not much of a movie, but it’s a movie nonetheless.”
Despite finding the film somewhat more agreeable than his peers, David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter could only conclude that “the movie has too little to distinguish it from the second-tier (or maybe third?) Marvel pack, ending up as more of the same.”
“Morbius is one of its most stale, unoriginal, and forgettable outings,” Emma Kiely outright stated in her review. “Despite Morbius being utterly forgettable, I have hope that if the character is given the right care and attention, an interesting antihero could rise from the narrative ashes of his solo outing. But for now, Morbius is the Sony Marvel universe’s first major disappointment in a while.”
Currently, the film’s abysmal critical scores have earned it a spot amongst Marvel’s greatest misses, such as Elektra (RT 11%, MC 34), Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (RT 18%, MC 34), and even Fantastic Four 2015 (RT 9%, MC 27).
Morbius premieres in theaters tomorrow, April 1st, 2022.
What do you make of these critics’ opinions of Morbius? Do you agree or disagree? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!