Elisabeth Moss fights the monster and a broken system at the same time.
I’ve had my doubts about this “Invisible Man” reboot, because of how “The Mummy” with Tom Cruise was a major disaster; and I have been skipping the year’s worst horrors like “Fantasy Island,” “The Grudge,” “Brahms: The Boy II,” and “The Turning,” because of my lack of good judgement in them. I expect horror movies with originality and versatility; not people screaming their heads off like in a bad Darren Aronofsky film (“mother” being that example).
I was surprisingly impressed with how writer/director Leigh Whannell gave H.G. Wells’ story a #MeToo vibe, and made sure Elisabeth Moss was given her strong will. The premise involves her character Cecilia Kass escaping the clutches of her narcissistic ex (Oliver Jackson-Cohen), who apparently commits suicide. But because he’s a scientist, he manages to find a way to make himself invisible.
This monster murders her sister (Harriet Dyer) and injures the daughter (Storm Reid) of her detective friend (Aldis Hodge), but it’s all pinned on Cecilia, who then get committed to a mental hospital. Why? I don’t know. Maybe because invisible people don’t exist in this world. Or do they?
But there’s more than meets the eye, because he plans to make Cecilia his own. Will she take it? Oh, Hell, no! This woman is smart and fearless, and refuses to let anyone manipulate her.
Moss delivers an emotional and pulsating performance, and Whannell guides her with the right intentions. This movie was not made to cater to today’s generation; it was made to show its love for women-the ones who must fight a broken system, which in this case happens to be abusive relationships. And she also has considerable support from Hodge as the detective who refuses to believe her ex is still alive.
The visual effects for the Invisible Man are astonishing. Back then in the 1933 version, wires and a black velvet suit made for Claude Rains were used to give audiences the illusion that an invisible person could wear clothes or throw objects at people. In this 2020 version, obviously green suits were used, but they still convince us that people are getting pulled away or knives are floating in the air. And the design of the invisible suit (which you get to see later on) looks cool and stylish.
It does get stressful when Cecilia gets blamed for her invisible ex’s wrongdoings, but they end up being hiccups, once we see the true colors of it all. But what’s even more relieving is that despite “The Mummy” reboot being memorably bad, “The Invisible Man” reboot actually has intelligence and ingenuous planning. I was expecting for it to be bad, but I was wrong to judge it. It’s not a jump scare, even if there are nonstop thrills, it’s a poetic and truthful adaptation of real life.