Malignant (2021)

Malignant
Director: James Wan
Writer: Akela Cooper, James Wan, Ingrid Bisu
Cast: Annabelle Wallis, Maddie Hasson, George Young, Michole Briana White, Ingrid Bisu, Jean Louisa Kelly, Susanna Thompson, Jake Abel, Jacqueline McKenzie, Christian Clemenson, Amir AboulEla, Zoë Bell
Seen on: 13.9.2021

Content Note: domestic violence, miscarriage

Plot:
Maddie (Annabelle Wallis) and her boyfriend Derek (Jake Abel) are expecting a baby, but things aren’t great between them, to say the least. After he gets aggressive with her again and slams her into a wall, a dark figure shows up in their home and kills Derek. Maddie is hurt herself and loses her baby. Deep in shock, she is unable to answer her sister Sydney’s (Maddie Hasson) or police detective Shaw’s (George Young) questions. When Maddie finally gets home from the hospital, she wants to start fresh. Instead she is haunted by nightmarish visions – that turn out to be of real murders. If Maddie doesn’t figure out what is going on soon, more people will die.

Malignant is expertly set in scene – as you’d expect from a Wan horror movie. But I was not sold on the story that meanders somewhere between psychological character study and B-movie shlock. Both can be good, but the combination here does both a disservice.

THe film poster showing the drawing of a woman in profile lying on her back. A shadow is over her face that looks like a face and a bloody knife is above them.
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Deep Blue Sea (1999)

Deep Blue Sea
Director: Renny Harlin
Writer: Duncan Kennedy, Donna Powers, Wayne Powers
Cast: Thomas Jane, Saffron Burrows, Samuel L. Jackson, Jacqueline McKenzie, Michael Rapaport, Stellan Skarsgård, LL Cool J, Aida Turturro
Seen on: 22.5.2021

Plot:
Dr. Susan McAlester (Saffron Burrows) and her team have been working on a cure to Alzheimer’s by experimenting on sharks. But after one of their sharks escaped from the research facility, attacked a ship and fortunately got brough back in by shark wrangler Carter (Thomas Jane) before anybody died, Susan is in trouble with the company that funds her research. She promises quick results and the company owner Russell Franklin (Samuel L. Jackson) wants to pay their research facility a visit. But once they start their final test, everything goes to hell.

I am reasonably certain that I watched Deep Blue Sea already at some point, but I don’t actually have any memory of seeing it before, so I’m not labeling this a re-watch. If I had remembered, I probably wouldn’t have watched it again. While it does have some nice moments, for the most part it’s pretty cringey.

The film poster showing a shark with his mouth open wide behind Susan (Saffron Burrows), up to her breast in water.
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Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears (2020)

Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears
Director: Tony Tilse
Writer: Deb Cox
Sequel to: Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries
Cast: Essie Davis, Nathan Page, Rupert Penry-Jones, Miriam Margolyes, Daniel Lapaine, Jacqueline McKenzie, Izabella Yena, Kal Naga, John Waters, Hugo Johnstone-Burt, Ashleigh Cummings, Travis McMahon
Seen on: 21.7.2020

Plot:
As usual, Phryne Fisher (Essie Davis) is on a mission. This time, her path brought her to Jerusalem where she frees Shirin (Izabella Yena) from prison. Shirin had been locked up because she claims that the British murdered her family and her entire village when she was a child. But things go a little badly and Phryne is claimed to be dead. The news even reaches Australia, where Jack Robinson (Nathan Page) leaves everything to say his goodbye to Phryne in the UK. When Phryne crashes her own funeral, obviously alive, and ready to solve the mystery around Shirin, Jack is both relieved and angry, and lets himself get roped in with the case.

Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears is, basically, the series finale for Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, a fantastic TV show that was cut off too soon and with a not very satisfying ending. This would have been their chance to bring things to a round close, but unfortunately, Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears is not up to snuff and simply not worthy of the show it is supposed to finish.

The film poster showing Phryne Fisher (Essie Davis) holding a gun.
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