M3GAN (2022)

m3gan poster 2022 movie
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 8/10

M3GAN is fun

Missed the opportunity to explore deeper questions

Movie Info

Movie Name:  M3GAN

Studio: Atomic Monster/Blumhouse Production/Divide/Conquer

Genre(s):  Horror

Release Date(s):  December 7, 2022 (Premiere)/January 6, 2023 (US)

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

m3gan amie donald violet mcgraw evil doll

“‘Friend to the End’ is taken? How about ‘Friend ’til I Kill You'”?

Gemma (Allison Williams) finds herself suddenly raising her niece Cady (Violet McGraw) following a tragic accident.  Gemma isn’t ready to be a mother and trying to develop a new project for the toy company she designs for…enter M3GAN (Amie Donald voiced by Jenna Davis).  M3GAN is a robot meant to help children, be a best friend, and keep them protected.  As Cady and her new friend grow closer together, the unintended consequences of the relationship could be deadly.

Directed by Gerard Johnstone, M3GAN is a horror thriller.  The film premiered in December 2022 but received a wide release in 2023.  It was met with mostly positive reviews and a strong box office.

I’m always onboard for scary doll movies.  They can sometimes be decent or they can sometimes be awful.  M3GAN has a lot of potential and some great parts, but it also falls flat in places.

m3gan dance paper cutter sword

This is why you don’t leave your papercutters laying around…

The story is a nice blend of a family drama and horror.  The relationship between Cady and Gemma is core to the movie but smartly underlying in the story.  The doll is the interjector that hurts the healing process and building process of the relationship between Gemma and Cady.  The horror is the obvious result of this breaking and it is done pretty well in classic horror style with M3GAN chopping and killing her competition (in PG-13 fashion).

The cast is good.  Violet McGraw is a decent child actress which is needed for this type of movie since there is a lot of range, and Allison Williams is good casting as someone who can come off as both cold and nurturing (like she did in Get Out).  Ronny Chieng is over-the-top and pretty generic as her supervisor David.  The star of course is Amie Donald who breathes life into the title character with the help of Jenna Davis.  The character is an interesting blend of realism and an artificial look which raises the creep factor.

m3gan ending fight damage killer doll

M3GAN after a weekend bender

I wish that the film had been a bit more hardcore and maybe pushed into the R-Rated category though I realize that PG-13 can be just as horrific if done right.  There are some decent creeps but not enough jumps in the movie…those which are there are pretty predictable.  Which such a creepy character who has immense power, I feel that even more could have been done…but the film is short and tight which also goes a long way.

What is missed is some of the bigger questions about the creation of a toy that is human.  The film A.I. focused on this and I wish that M3GAN had done some of it.  What does it mean to have a “best friend” for Cady who never ages as she does? What if she gets bored with her best friend?  Is it fair to create something that is so lifelike and “emotional” without treating it like a human and something that simply can be decommissioned?  It is the bigger questions in the movie that might have made the film better.  Despite this, M3GAN is a fun (but flawed) watch and hopefully the sequel M3GAN 2.0 will explore this.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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