Director: Gerard Johnstone
Screenplay by: Akeela Cooper
Starring: Alison Williams, Violet McGraw, Ronny Chieng, Amie Donald
M3GAN (Megan) is another Blumhouse production and the production company’s first release of the year. A story by James Wan and Jason Blum, written by Akeela Cooper – I knew it was in good hands as both Akeela and James had both worked on ‘The Malignant’ together, James directing and Akeela writing.
We have seen many horror films revolving around a killer doll – Chucky, and Annabelle, to name a few. So when I heard about this film and watched the trailer, I was intrigued by the plot and what could happen within the film. The trailer alone made me want to see it.
I watched this film a week ago today – I initially wanted to see it in the cinemas, but I didn’t get around to it once again. So as soon as it was available on streaming, I was there, ready and waiting.
M3GAN is a science fiction horror film revolving around an Artificially Intelligent doll created to protect a young girl who recently lost her parents from physical and emotional harm. The doll develops self-awareness and eventually becomes hostile towards anyone who comes between her and her companion.
The first thing I want to say is that if there is going to be a killer toy/doll run by AI – this is the way to do it. The Child’s Play remake could learn a lot from this film. I thoroughly enjoyed it. From the beginning, we are introduced to the main character, Cady (portrayed by Violet McGraw), and we see her tragically lose her parents in a car accident (sorry for the spoilers). So from that alone, you are drawn in, wondering what will happen to the young girl.
The young girl then moves in with her workhorse of an Aunt, Gemma (Portrayed by Alison Williams), a roboticist at a high-tech toy company called ‘Funki’. As Gemma finds it hard to balance taking care of Cady and work – she decides to restart a work project that had previously failed, except, this time, it was for her niece and was a success. She created M3gan to do the things essentially a parent should do while she works.
Violet McGraw did an excellent job as Cady; you could see all her emotions through her face, body language and performance on screen. You could tell the character change as she gets closer to M3gan, the defiance of a child as she distances further from her aunt and more closed off she becomes – running away from the grief of losing her parents rather than facing it. Violet’s performance was one of my main factors in liking the film.
With the horror aspect being the focal point, there was also some Humour in this film that did not fall flat as it usually would in a horror genre. Ronny Chieng brought the humour, and he portrayed the CEO of the Funki toy company. His comedic timing felt natural and unintentional and was a nice touch to the film.
Overall, this film had the majority of what I was looking for in a film regarding a killer AI doll. My only downfall is that the way it ended left it open for a sequel – and as I am writing this, one has been announced. ‘M3GAN 2.0’ is being created and scheduled for a January 2025 release – including the same characters and actors. Sometimes, I feel that the second a film gets the success wanted by the production company, they end up with sequels and franchises, which may not have been the original idea, and the story and characters lose their value. But that is just my opinion.
Besides that, give this film a watch, whether you are a horror fan or not. Some comedy aspects would make you laugh, and creepy elements may cause you to pause the film – the choice is yours!