Reviews

M3GAN Review

DON’T F WITH AI

SCORE: 3 / 5

Another first weekend of January, another horror movie to get the movie theater year going! This year Universal brings us the andriod-mixed-with-horror-doll movie M3GAN. I had a fun time watching this movie, it has a good mix of humor, and unsettling horror as an AI four-foot doll is tasked with protecting a young girl processing the death of her parents and as you’d expect it goes entirely off the rails.

Let’s get the not-fun stuff out of the way first. This movie falls back on a tried-and-true plot of many science fiction stories, don’t make a super advanced computer without putting in some aggressive guardrails. Otherwise, you get a Model 3 Generation Andriod (aka M3GAN) that very quickly decides the solution to most problems is murder. Along with that is the human part of the story to give a reason as to why M3GAN comes to be. M3GAN’s creator, Gemma, works for a company that makes somehow more annoying versions of Furbies. Remember those ugly-looking things? Anyways, the movie opens with her sister’s family on a car ride getting hit by a snowplow leaving just her niece, Cady alive. As a way to cope for Cady, and as an escape from being a parent Gemma finishes a prototype for a ridiculous idea for a future children’s toy, M3GAN, and introduces it to Cady. The movie glosses over the ideas of processing trauma and parenting just enough to justify the plot that follows, but it’s definitely the least interesting part of the movie. A standout moment of this is showing the level of withdrawals Cady will express when not with M3GAN. It’s a bit much.

That said, this movie knows what people paid for. A bonkers evil doll doing terrible things. Watching what is the size of a child incorporate a dance she learned from Cady as she prepares to murder someone is always entertaining. Instead of the supernatural twist of powers beyond her physical body, M3GAN is an AI and the movie leans into this several times to show that if there is technology to hack into, she will use it. Anytime M3GAN is on screen there is always either a moment of horror or comedy which is good news with this being the main draw of the movie. It’s simple and it works, focus on the killer robot doll and the movie shines.

All to say, M3GAN is still the typical horror movie with the same beats you have probably seen twenty times, but it’s the unique flavor of mixing AI, a terminator, and a toy doll that makes for a fun time at the theater.

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