I have to confess that when I went into the theater to watch the new Blumhouse film, M3GAN, I thought it was going to be a horrible film. And I don’t think I was in the minority, either. The trailer made it look like a gender swapped version of Chucky with some TikTok dances thrown in for good measure.
And while there were a few moments that were cringe worthy, I have to admit that I enjoyed watching the film.
The film stars Allison Williams as Gemma, a brilliant toy-company roboticist who knows nothing about being a parent. Gemma becomes the guardian of her niece Cady, played by Violet McGraw, when Cady’s parents die in an accident. Gemma can’t relate to Cady so she decides to finish M3GAN which stands for Model 3 Generative Android. Gemma capitalizes on her inability to connect with her niece by introducing her to M3GAN, played by Amie Donald and Jenna Davis (voice). Gemma’s bosses see the potential in M3GAN and decide to immediately roll the model out to lonely children everywhere… all for an exorbitant amount.
Obviously as you might be able to predict, M3GAN turns into a murderer.
Let’s get the obvious criticisms out of the way. Yes, there are a couple of cringe-induced moments in this film. However, they aren’t as bad as you think and, for the most part, work inside this movie. I like the fact that the movie is self-aware and calls to attention the fact that M3GAN’s skin looks really weird. It’s that whole Uncanny Valley factor. The other criticism I have is that no therapist was consulted about how such a toy would affect a child. Once again though, you clearly see the result later on in the film. There’s also no checking the logic parameters that are given to M3GAN prior to activation. It’s funny to me that a toy company wouldn’t test that sort of thing prior to showing M3GAN off to the world. Although if they did their due diligence then we wouldn’t have this movie.
On to the things I liked about this film.
The acting was great. Allison Williams and Violet McGraw were excellent. This isn’t McGraw’s first time in a horror property. She starred as Young Nell in Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House. Williams isn’t new to the genre either having starred in Get Out (2017). I really enjoyed the relationship between the two and honestly thought McGraw outperformed Williams.
They managed to keep the blood and gore down to a minimum, netting the film a PG-13 rating. Going into the film, I didn’t know what the film was rated, and was actually surprised, afterward, when I found out it wasn’t rated R.
Speaking of the blood and gore, the movie didn’t have a very high body count. If we’re comparing M3GAN to the 2019 reboot Child’s Play in terms of body count, then Child’s Play has eight deaths while M3GAN has five (if memory serves).
I also liked the conflict between hands-on parenting verse remote parenting. As Cady and M3GAN spend more time together, Gemma comes to the realization that her niece is being crippled by being raised by technology.
Overall, I thought that M3GAN is going to be one of those horror films that people didn’t think were going to be good, but when they watch it they’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you like horror films, I would recommend you take a chance on this film.
M3GAN is rated PG-13 for terror, some strong language, suggestive reference, and violent content. Also, if you’re triggered by animal deaths, you should be warned that there is an animal that dies in this film, but you don’t see the actual death nor do you see the body.
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