Possessor ★★★★

Brandon Cronenberg continues to follow in his dad's science-horror footsteps with that rare beast, an arthouse splatter movie, not to mention ridiculous lead character names like Tasya Vos, Reid Parse and a woman called Girder. Tasya is an assassin who works for Girder, but in true dystopian style she operates via an implant that lets her take over the bodies of unwilling patsies who appear to actually do the hits. But the psychological burden of the experiences is taking its toll, and Tasya's big weakness is being unable to finish her jobs by putting a bullet in the brain of the body she's controlling.

Possessor is weird, original and fascinating, even if the sci-fi element wanders a little towards Doctor Who territory towards the end when two people who should be one person appear to share the same space. But like, Doctor Who if it was incredibly gory and cruel. Britain's new special makeup king Dan Martin's incredible and varied work is on display from beginning to end, perhaps most notably giving perennial punchbag Sean Bean a brutalising like nobody else ever has.

As with his previous film, Antiviral, Cronenberg Jr makes it impossible not to think of him as continuing David Cronenberg's legacy, but this time round it's a much more well-rounded update rather than a mere pastiche. Daddy must be proud; this is a clever, unpredictable and explicitly graphic treat.

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