Possessor

Possessor ★★★★

Very interesting film from Brandon Cronenberg. Its virtually impossible to review this without me mentioning his dad so I'll get that out of the way up-front. He has clearly learnt a thing or two from the elder Cronenberg, not just in the sci-fi/horror subject matter but also in terms of pacing and framing.

Andrea Riseborough is fantastic (when isn't she) as Tasya, a "mind assassin" who possesses the thought-control of an unwitting Individual and then uses them to complete a hit on a target. In essence, this is the perfect weapon. You can whack someone in the most convenient, public of places, full of witnesses and not worry about the consequences because hey, it's not you who is the guilty party.

Away from her unique occupation, Tasya leads a normal life with her husband and son. Everything is idyllic apart from the odd niggle about her always having to "work away".

I'll leave it there for plot, but let it be said that the movie will take you on a cosmic journey into the mind of another assassin vessel, and as the story progresses, the lines between virtual and reality will begin to blur.

Possessor is an excellent film, full of intelligent ideas and well executed set pieces. It's complex but never does it confuse. The psychedelic imagery is effective as we travel through minds out into what could be an alternative dimension. I love these genre films that merge loads of different styles together - you have the classic body horror elements, a sci-fi conundrum and a straight-forward crime movie- almost a heist of the mind.

There are a lot of films I can see in this. Obviously his dad has been an influence but I see Kathryn Bigelow's excellent Strange Days in here, some of the visual paranoia of Under the Skin and even to some extent Chris Nolan's Inception. Whilst it's not as big budget as a couple of those films, the ideas are there. And there's some really nasty set pieces to tie it all together.

Not for the faint hearted, Possessor is an absolute triumph and I highly recommend it to anyone who likes their cinema a little more subversive.

P.S. anyone who knows the "Sean Bean Rule"... he has maybe his greatest "Sean Bean Moment" in this movie.

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