M3GAN has become somewhat of a social media star in the lead-up to the release of the movie, yet you would be surprised at just how much more she has to offer in the latest outing from Blumhouse Productions, Atomic Monster and Universal Pictures.
After the sudden and tragic death of her parents young Cady (Violet McGraw) is left to move in with her aunt Gemma (Allison Williams). Gemma is a single young woman deeply invested in her career as a roboticist at a children’s toy company. Being completely out of her depth Gemma decides to fast-track her newest invention M3GAN and pair it with her niece in hopes it will relieve some of the stress at home and propel her further in her career at work. M3GAN is a hit with Cady and they fast become the best of friends, going everywhere together and spending all their time together. M3GAN quickly shows just how great she can be, taking over the parent role and helping Cady navigate the day-to-day, even helping her in those moments when Cady is having trouble with the death of her parents and processing her feelings.
M3GAN is a four-foot-tall life-like android capable of watching, listening and learning from its primary user all the while taking on the role of a friend, teacher, caregiver, playmate and protector. She is completely autonomous only needing to sit in your room of a night recharging while creepily staring into the darkness like a possessed tesla. Artificial intelligence being what it is we all should know by now giving it free reign to learn can never be a good thing and the same can be said for M3GAN after she takes her directive of keeping Cady safe a little too seriously and well you can imagine what happens from there.
Too often lately I have walked away from a movie underwhelmed especially in the horror/thriller space. M3GAN definitely fits within the thriller genre and while there were some predictable turns it still managed to go places I was not expecting. There are some brilliantly impressive deaths, as I am sure most would expect, to help elevate M3GAN to the lofty heights of Chucky yet it is brilliantly scripted one-liners and little quips that really keep the plot fresh and you engaged in the story wondering what is going to happen or more to the point “how” it is going to happen next. The dialogue helped maintain a lighter atmosphere and a more enjoyable experience while watching a full cinema. Laughter broke out frequently and having an eight-year-old at home, I was shaking my head way too often at the mannerisms that M3GAN picks up from Cady throughout their time together.
Underneath the laughs and thrills, I took a pretty specific message away from M3GAN. One of humanities addiction to technology and the way it is being used by more and more people as a coping mechanism to simply get through day-to-day life or as with Cady and Gemma, being used as a buffer so as to not have to face the terrible realisation of loss and the unknown.
I left M3GAN utterly thrilled having watched it. The story is paced well and doesn’t slacken off at any point. The mood is fun and the thrills are plentiful not taking itself too seriously. There are some significantly projected jump scares but they still got plenty of people to let out a little scream and laughter afterwards. M3GAN is exactly what is needed out of a horror/thriller and took me back to some of my favourite horror movies from my much younger days.
M3GAN is releasing on January 12th in Australia. Make sure you keep an eye out for it.
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