Possessor (2020)

possessor poster 2020 movie
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Director shows good judgment and look forward to future films, ruthless

Feels like it could develop even more

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Possessor

Studio:  Rhombus Media/Rook Films/Particular Crowd

Genre(s):  Horror/Mystery/Suspense

Release Date(s):  January 25, 2020 (Sundance Film Festival)/October 2, 2020 (US)

MPAA Rating:  R

possessor andrea riseborough machine

Strap in for fun and mayhem!

Tasya Vos (Andrea Riseborough) has a gift.  She is an elite assassin that can enter a person and use that person for her hit.  Committing suicide, she gets away clean for her handler Girder (Jennifer Jason Leigh).  Vos is starting to have problems.   The lives of the people she is possessing are starting to bleed into her own life and her husband Michael (Rossif Sutherland) and her son Ira (Gage Graham-Arbuthnot) are becoming a liability.  When she is sent to assassinate John Parse (Sean Bean) through his daughter’s fiancé Colin Tate (Christopher Abbott), Vos finds herself trapped…and she getting out could cost everything.

Written and directed by Brandon Cronenberg, Possessor is a sci-fi horror film.  The film premiered at Sundance and received positive reviews.

possessor christopher abbott suicide

All you need to do is pull the trigger

I love David Cronenberg and was curious how his son’s films would turn out.  Possessor feels like a direct link to his father and an evolution of his father’s storytelling while being a solid movie in itself.  Due to aspects of the plot, a ******spoiler alert****** is in effect for the rest of the review.

The movie isn’t an easy film.  With the body hopping and the blurring of identities of Vos and Colin, it isn’t always easy to follow.  The movie also is very dark.  While you expect Vos to fight to protect her family, she ends up pretty much sacrificing her family for her job (though she is manipulated into it).  The ending is very cold and heartless and now that Vos is “free” she’ll be even more deadly.  The movie isn’t playing around.

Riseborough continues to be an interesting up-and-coming actress who brings a lot to her roles.  Though she has been around a bit, she’s exploded in recent years and shown a lot of range.  Sean Bean plays a very Sean Bean role (though he doesn’t suffer his normal Sean Bean fate).  I generally like Jennifer Jason Leigh, but I wish that she had been in the film more.

possessor andrea riseborough mask

What mask are you wearing now?

The movie is also very brutal.  Brandon’s father was known for his body horror.  While Possessor isn’t body horror it feels like it is on the path to body horror along the lines of Videodrome or eXistenZ.  Instead, you get a very bloody mess…and it shows great potential for Cronenberg’s future.

Possessor isn’t perfect, but it is a different and exciting movie in that it shows a young director moving up in the world of horror.  Horror goes through different waves, and it feels like a new wave of horror is starting with movies like Possessor and X which have returned to the brutal horror without barriers.  I look forward to Cronenberg’s next venture.

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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