Eternals Teaser: Chloe Zhao's Marvel Debut Is Striking & Haunting
The Marvel Studios' Eternals follows the tale of an ancient race that finally steps out of the shadows.
Marvel Studios' Eternals is probably one of its movies most shrouded in anticipation, especially with its diverse cast and Oscar award-winning director Chloe Zhao at its helm. The first official teaser-trailer of the film gives an indication of how Zhao's vision will assimilate itself into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. From glimpses of the lore to a hint at an Indian themed wedding, the teaser has it all.
Eternals stars Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Kit Harington, Kumail Nanjiani, Gemma Chan and Richard Madden in pivotal roles.
MCU producer Kevin Feige had told Variety that Chan's Sersi is the lead for the film, if one is to be considered. Sersi is a museum curator who has the ability to manipulate matter.
Madden's Ikaris possesses super strength and can shoot laser beams from his eyes. Angelina plays Thena, a warrior who moulds weapons from cosmic energy, as evident from the sword she wields, seemingly made of light.
Additionally, Lauren Ridloff plays Makkari, the first MCU superhero with a hearing impairment. In the comics, she is known as the fastest woman in the universe. Brian Tyree Henry's Phastos is MCU's first openly gay superhero. He is the technologist for the Eternals on Earth, in the comics, and is closely associated to Hephaestus, the Greek god of forgery.
As the video opens, settlers of a seemingly early civilisation are greeted by a looming ship in the sky. That's how we meet the Eternals, as an omnipresent yet hidden entity. Set to Skeeter Davis' song The End of the World, a voiceover explains that they've 'watched, guided, and helped humanity progress'.
"We have helped them progress and seen them accomplish wonders. Throughout the years, we've never interfered...until now," the voiceover reveals. What event pushed the Eternals to finally step out of the shadows? That remains unknown.
However, the teaser does reveal that the Eternals know of the Avengers, evident from Sprite's (played by Lia McHugh) question, "Now that Captain Rogers and Iron Man are gone, who's going to lead the Avengers?" Ikaris' (Richard Madden) nomination of himself as the role is met with laughter.
The antagonists of the film will reportedly be the Deviants, the same humanoid race that feature as villains in the comics. The Deviants are portrayed as violent, mythical creatures often in a visual contrast to the 'sophisticated' Eternals. The official statement from Disney describes the Eternals as "a group of immortal heroes forced out of the shadows to reunite against mankind’s oldest enemy, The Deviants".
There is a decent chance that the Deviants could just be a cause for concern while the main villain hides somewhere else. The teaser has a glimpse of Barry Keoghan as Druig, a controversial character despite being an Eternal himself. His character follows the trope of the power-hungry villain.
While many scenes are derivative of Marvel's action sequences, Chloe Zhao's influence on the story is unmistakable. The gradual shift from one scene to the other set to a somber background score is indicative of Zhao's filmmaking.
There are many questions about the film that remain to be answered, and in due time, they might be. Eternals is scheduled to release in November 2021.
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