The Invisible Man

The Invisible Man ★★★★

"Surprise."

A superbly realized genre retelling, one whose unexpected integrity enhances both the horror and science fiction elements while delivering a fundamental tale about those held prisoner by the ones closest to them. It's a well-balanced interplay of "show, don't tell" and vice versa that ignites the psychologically strained corridors of Leigh Whannell's The Invisible Man. Trauma, doubt, and relentless unease infect every scene, a sense of pervasive fear that the writer-director efficiently engineers to allow this electric rendition of H.G. Wells' material a spirit that's refreshingly contemporary, gleefully vintage, and wholly effective. Even with a few inevitable conveniences and an instance or two of predictable plotting, each twist and turn manages to satisfy almost without fail. And the committed lead performance from Elisabeth Moss reinforces the sharp craftsmanship present in the frame and on the page.

Thank God that 2017's The Mummy turned out to be the colossal dud we predicted. From the ashes of that inept and artistically bankrupt catastrophe has come not only this admirably executed picture from Whannell, but the now unquestionably anticipated cinematic telling of Dracula by filmmaker Karyn Kusama for Blumhouse and Universal. Like The Invisible Man, let's hope for another invigorating, attentive interpretation of such quintessential roots. One where every terror and truth feel as earned and considerate as they do in this 2020 surprise.

"Don't let him haunt you."

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