Sunday, 4 September 2016

#56 MORGAN


Starring Kate Mara, Anay Taylor-Joy, Toby Jones, Rose Leslie, Boyd Holbrook, Michelle Yeoh, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Paul Giamatti. Written by Seth Owen and directed by Luke Scott.

Budget $8 million and 92 minutes long.

A trouble shooter for a corporation, Lee Weathers (Kate Mara) arrives at a remote research facility, populated by a ragtag team of scientists, somewhere deep in a beautiful forest, with a hidden gun, a sharp set of trouser suits and a no-nonsense haircut to conduct an investigation into an incident involving a genetically created 'human' codenamed Morgan. Morgan, as played by Anay Taylor-Joy. Morgan is a 6-year old, adult-sized genetically enhanced human who, one day blinds one of her minders in an unprovoked attack and is placed into lock-down pending the result of Weather's investigation, who might be hiding a secret of her own...

As a series of interviews takes place between Weathers and the scientists, and with Morgan herself we learn of the relationship between the scientists and Morgan and the events that led up to the attack, which all culminate in an incredible showdown between Morgan and Paul Giamatti's Dr. Alan Shapiro - a behaviour psychologist, that takes a turn for the worst and leads to Morgan escaping from her glass box prison and wrecking revenge upon those who have imprisoned her.

This looks stunning, which thanks to having Ridley Scott as your father, is hardly surprising and features a terrific cast of actors. It also starts off well, creating a sense of menace that nicely builds until it's all blown on the totally generic, monster on the loose 3rd act where all the mental jousting is dumped for gun battles, fisti-cuffs and monster hunting that leads to a totally surprise free twist ending which you worked out in the opening scene.

This feels like someone watched the infinitely more superior Ex-Machina and said, 'hey, d'you what would make that film better? A monster chase!'

As stated, it starts well and reaches its peak with the extremely uncomfortable interview between Morgan and Dr. Shapiro, but after that, it's just a badly staged monster hunt and feels like Luke is paying far too much homage to daddy's Alien.

Nowhere near as good as Ex machina and ultimately disappointing, but it looks beautiful and the performances particularly Jones, Giamaatti, Leslie and Yeoh are excellent. it's just a shame it's all so generic and features one of the worst set up 'surprise endings' since Oblivion.

5/10






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