This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to go watch Marvel's new blockbuster, "Venom," featuring Tom Hardy and Riz Ahmed. I was blown away by the avid attention to detail highlighted through CGI effects, the relatively straightforward storyline depicting an age of symbiotes, and the action-packed fight scenes that saw Venom shredding through police officers and Carlton Drake's men in its quest to stop Riot, but the greatest quality of the movie, in my opinion, was the theme of power being used for good or evil, specifically the power of symbiotes.

At the beginning of the movie, we see Carlton Drake receive the packages of three symbiotes (Riot manages to escape the crash-landing that brings his kin to Earth). His desire to utilize the symbiotes to evolve humanity into a new species in order to combat extremities plaguing the planet, such as war and famine, seems benevolent at first, but our positive impression of him is shattered after seeing him sacrifice subject after subject (usually homeless people) in order to accomplish true equilibrium with the symbiotes.

In contrast, Eddie Brock serves as an investigative journalist striving to expose the corruption of high-level executives, first in New York and then in San Francisco. After bonding with their respective symbiotes (Drake with Riot and Brock with Venom), the two diverge in their usage of the power lent to them — Drake tries to utilize Riot's abilities in order to bring more of the symbiotes to Earth in an attempt to eradicate the human population for symbiotes to rule over the planet, while Brock's cooperation with Venom is based on a desire to help protect the planet.

It's interesting to note that Drake and Brock once shared a mutual goal of doing right by humanity and working (through their respective fields) to alleviate the pains of humanity — indeed, Drake invented a cure for pancreatic cancer at the age of 19 before subsequently creating the Life Foundation with the purpose of curing mankind of various maladies, and Eddie has ousted many corrupt high-level individuals through exposure of their evil deeds via The Eddie Brock Report.

They both obtain power well beyond the normal expectations of man through bonding with their respective symbiotes, but they choose to utilize it in opposite extremes. This two-sided usage of the same power reveals a central truth to the theme of the movie — that power itself is neither good nor bad, but the user makes it so.