A robotics engineer at a toy company builds a life-like doll that begins to take on a life of its own.
Audiences often yell at characters on the screen during movies when they’re pushing the boundaries of advanced technology. The overall question is why do this? Why put humanity in danger with a potentially artificial intelligence robotic world takeover? That’s what M3GAN is trying to accomplish and the premise will never stop being at least entertaining. So after a robotics engineer named Gemma (Allison Williams) designs a life-like doll you can only expect chaos and mayhem to follow.
The best part of M3GAN is M3GAN itself. The four-foot-tall titanium robotic android is frightenedly creepy in the best way possible. The design, the makeup, and the costumes are all on point, and the film does a phenomenal job of making you feel uncomfortable when M3GAN is on screen. She’s being played by Amie Donald, and this young actress did everything she needed to flesh out this wild bizarre character.
What does come as a surprise in the film is not the horror, suspense, or thrill elements, but the humor. Out of nowhere, this film is much funnier than it needs to be. With it being self-aware and acknowledging how ridiculous the overall premise is, you may find yourself laughing more than you could’ve imagined. Partly due to how all of the characters combined in this film are reacting to this life-like doll they encounter. What’s relatable is always funny, and this film takes that notion to the next level. Actor Ronny Chieng plays a CEO by the name of David, and while it’s hard to take his character seriously he still has some great comedic timing.
Another positive note is the runtime is barely over 90 minutes long. This film is the perfect hour-and-a-half movie to get you in and out if you just wanted to have a quick escape to the theater. What’s also great is the underlying message of how we as humans rely on technology to improve our lives, when in reality it could be damaging personal connections and real-life relationships with the ones we love.
While it is fun, unfortunately, this film doesn’t reach its full potential. While M3GAN is great there wasn’t enough violence to satisfy moviegoers looking for this type of treatment. This is a PG-13 film, and that hurts it severely. For most of the kills the camera cuts away so you can’t see the violence and the gore, and there aren’t that many kills to begin with. It’s a huge missed opportunity because it takes nearly an hour into the film to get to the gruesome deaths audience members are salivating for. There could’ve easily been moments where M3GAN goes on a killing rampage but that theme is never explored.
The characters aren’t the best either. They aren’t the most horrible, but I like rooting for individuals that use a level of common sense. There was none here. There was no responsibility or accountability from anyone involved in the making of M3GAN. You would think proper testing would take place with every opportunity imaginable but they’re treating this endeavor as if it is as easy as boiling water. Which is a huge mistake if that wasn’t obvious enough already.
Overall M3GAN is still a fun time at the movies, and some may call it a crowd pleaser. With mild expectations, I’m sure most will enjoy themselves. There are a large number of similarities to the classic 80’s film Child’s Play, but that film still remains the reigning champion for this genre. While it was fun, there were still missed opportunities to make this film stand out for the rest of time, which will leave it most likely forgettable a number of months down in the future.