Malignant ★★★½

Gloriously stupid. Hugely ridiculous. Righteously unconcerned with the way absolutely everything in the real world works, reveling in its total disregard for any of the actual implications of its own plot devices - which are labored to the point of pricelessness.

It’s like an idea a sixteen year old boy would have. Then that boy watched a metric fuckton of golden age straight-to-vid horror, baked it all down until it shined with that (lame-ass) modern horror sheen, and served it back up with all the craft of an adult who’s already got several big budget movies under his persistently juvenile belt. There are moments during the last act where we come very close - but not quite - to full-blown 1980’s Hong Kong levels of radical absurdity.

After a pretty bang on B monster movie cold open things get boring for a bit because drama and character are not where this movie thrives. Our first horror sequence after the cold open feels like polished, tired, early oughts American J-horror crap, practically betraying the atmosphere it created in the first five minutes. But I promise, this does tighten the bolts and become more and more fun as it goes along.

I hate those CGI environment melty scenes though, and I just can't care about any of these people. But nothing about this is going to be perfect... it’s not that kind of jam. What it’s going to be is stupid. Stupidly entertaining. Which is considerably different than stupid entertainment.

Glad I watched it, and that's not something I've said about a straight to HBOMax movie in, like, ever.

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