Plot: When Cecilia’s abusive ex takes his own life and leaves her fortune, she suspects his death was a hoax. As a series of coincidences turn lethal, Cecilia’s works to prove that she is being hunted by someone nobody can see.
Director: Leigh Whannell
Release Date: February 2020
Sadly the so-called Dark Universe after The Mummy remake and Dracula: Untold with only a few of the famous Universal monsters making an appearance, the fact renamed that the studio needs to remake these films ever 10/15 or so years or risk losing the rights to these creatures, meaning it was inevitable that we would receive another outing of H. G. Wells invisible man.
For a story that has been around for over a century and brought to life in a multitude of different guises, including the forgettable Hollow Man and the downright awful League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, I was starting to get a little worried that we were never going to see this character not only reach his potential but also be successfully updated for a modern audience, luckily, however, I was wrong on both counts and not only has Leigh Whannell managed to produce a fresh take on the character that had me glued to the screen from start to finish, he has taken all the skills he learnt when writing Saw, Insidious and Dead Silence to finally make the character scary.
This time The Invisible Man follows Cecilia (Moss) as she attempts to escapes an abusive relationship and while taking shelter at a friend’s house discovers her ex has died of an apparent suicide. Sadly, however, not everything is as it seems and Cecilia has to prove that not only is her ex not dead but he has found a way to turn himself invisible and continue to torment her into coming back to him. Without going near any spoilers or touching any potential twists that you might come across, this movie may feel very much of the #metoo era but the re-imagining to the modern era has been done in such a way that it doesn’t feel heavy-handed or ‘woke’ but instead in a way that feels natural and extremely satisfying for all involved.
This film starts off with a tension-filled escape from the house that had become a prison for Cecilia and from that point you know how much this film relies upon is going to rely on Elisabeth Moss’s ability to give a convincing performance even all by herself and her she delivers, producing an emotionally charged performance, that’s filled with trauma and never lets you escape the fear and foreboding that’s almost suffocating at time. This role requires a lot of an actor but there is a particular moment in a restaurant that left me with my jaw on the floor due to how unexpected it was and elevated her performance to another level due to the huge amount of emotions she goes through during the scene.
From the very first shot of waves crashing on the shore, I knew that the cinematography and directing was going to be something special and I wasn’t disappointed. The way the camera is used throughout is extremely enjoyable, panning across an empty area in a room to trick your mind into thinking though someone might be standing there and if you look hard enough you might just see, it’s probably the best use of negative space I have seen in a long time, while the excellent sound work helps to give the audience and the characters and overbearing feeling.
In the end, The Invisible Man is great for a multitude of reasons, a couple of which I can’t mention due to them not wanting to spoil the film, however, I found myself engrossed in this films from start to finish, the acting by Moss was outstanding, directing was perfect and the story was not only updated for the modern age but excels at it.