M3GAN is a marvel of artificial intelligence, a life-like doll programmed to be a child’s greatest companion and a parent’s greatest ally. Designed by brilliant toy-company roboticist Gemma (Allison Williams, Get Out), M3GAN can listen and watch and learn as she becomes friend and teacher, playmate and protector, for the child she is bonded to. As Gemma faces pressure at work from her boss (Ronny Chieng, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) to deliver a finished version of M3GAN, she suddenly becomes the unprepared caretaker of her newly orphaned 8-year-old niece, Cady (Violet McGraw, The Haunting of Hill House). Gemma decides to pair the M3GAN prototype with Cady in an attempt to resolve both problems—a decision that will have unimaginable consequences.
What We Thought:
Overall I did enjoy M3GAN, but I did expect a bit more from it. Even with an Unrated edition I wanted a higher body count and more action. At times it takes itself way too seriously and gets heavy with the death of the young girl’s parents and Allison Williams’ work.
Going into it I was expecting a Child’s Play type film. That franchise is horror royalty because it took a doll, made it a killer and continued its nonsense for decades. M3GAN is technically a killer doll, but the kills are few and far between and it relies more on the story than it should. Williams creates the robot and you sit and wait for the AI to turn bad. It does, but it takes a while as the doll and young girl bond. Too much time is spent on all that in my opinion. It’s horror, give me horror. Give me gore and blood and people dying in shock because a robot doll just murdered them.
When it does go off the rails it’s highly entertaining. You laugh at it and with it and that’s the point. The movie is supposed to be laughably preposterous. If you’ve seen the trailer you most certainly laughed at the robot doll dancing in the hallway. That’s what I expected the entire movie, absolute lunacy. Unfortunately like previously stated, it’s too serious at times. I know James Wan and Jason Blum (producers on the film) like making intelligent horror and I like their films, but they should have let the killer robot doll be the killer robot doll.
M3GAN was a box office hit and I expect a sequel. It also sounds like I’m hating on the movie more than I mean too, but I did honestly expect to love the movie. I liked it. I’ll watch it again (especially the Unrated version) and I’ll watch any sequels and spinoffs, but this could have been an all-time horror masterpiece. It doesn’t quite get there, but it is still worth seeing.
EXCLUSIVE BONUS FEATURES ON BLU-RAYTM, DVD & DIGITAL:
- A New Vision of Horror – Filmmakers and cast break down how the world of M3GAN was created, including the initial idea, through production under the leadership of director Gerard Johnstone
- Bringing Life to M3GAN – See how animatronics, puppets, and actor Amie Donald helped make M3GAN as real as possible
- Getting Hacked – A behind-the-scenes look at how cast and crew accomplished some of the film’s complex stunts and gory deaths