Malignant

2021, Horror/Mystery & thriller, 1h 51m

144 Reviews 500+ Verified Ratings

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critics consensus

Although Malignant isn't particularly scary, director James Wan's return to horror contains plenty of gory thrills -- and a memorably bonkers twist. Read critic reviews

audience says

Love it or hate it -- and there isn't much in between -- Malignant is one horror movie that takes risks and is willing to get weird. Read audience reviews

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Movie Info

Paralyzed by fear from shocking visions, a woman's torment worsens as she discovers her waking dreams are terrifying realities.

Cast & Crew

Annabelle Wallis
Madison Mitchell
Maddie Hasson
Sydney Lake
George Young
Kekoa Shaw
Jean Louisa Kelly
Jane Doe, Serena
Jake Abel
Derek Mitchell
Jacqueline McKenzie
Dr. Florence Weaver
Christian Clemenson
Dr. Victor Fields
Amir Aboulela
Dr. Gregory
Ingrid Bisu
CST Winnie
Ruben Pla
Officer Rubin
Jon Lee Brody
Officer Lee
Zoe Bell
Scorpion
James Wan
Director
Akela Cooper
Screenwriter
James Wan
Producer
Eric McLeod
Executive Producer
Judson Scott
Executive Producer
Ingrid Bisu
Executive Producer
Peter Luo
Executive Producer
Cheng Yang
Executive Producer
Mandy Yu
Executive Producer
Han Lei
Executive Producer
Michael Burgess
Cinematographer
Kirk M. Morri
Film Editor
Joseph Bishara
Original Music
Desma Murphy
Production Design
David Scott
Art Director
Jennifer Gentile
Set Decoration
Lisa Norcia
Costume Designer
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Critic Reviews for Malignant

Audience Reviews for Malignant

  • Oct 11, 2021
    It is an original take on the horror genre not super scary but maybe too gory! It works because of the star Annabelle Wallis who makes the unbelievable seem believable and true. The support cast shines as well. Wan knows how to direct horror and it is evident here! 10-11-2021
    Christopher O Super Reviewer
  • Oct 07, 2021
    On the one hand, I do appreciate that the movie is unabashedly a theme park ride without any agenda other than to be a wild thriller. On the other, it doesn't really succeed at those goals. Everything is too deliberate, even the "crazy" revelations which are underwhelming and obvious.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Sep 26, 2021
    It might take me a while to ultimately decide how I feel about this movie. The absurd plot, the weirdass twists, the jarring and excessive use of the song "Where is My Mind", it practically dares you to like it. I had to ultimately come to the realization that it's a camp film, not a straight horror film like Wan is known for. It's more in the spirit of 80s B-Movies than anything else. Knowing that, it does what it sets out to do and does it fine. However, while I love 80s B-Movies, it moreso pulls inspiration from the handful I really don't care for. But that's more on me, maybe it'll work for someone else. It's shocking, weird, grotesque, and not what you think it will be. I still haven't decided if I actually liked it or not.
    Michael M Super Reviewer
  • Sep 23, 2021
    Thank goodness for James Wan. The horror hit-maker has earned enough creative cache in the industry after fostering three separate horror franchises (totaling near two billion dollars), plus two other high-profile action superhero blockbusters, that he can do whatever he wants and thankfully what Wan wants to do is make really weird movies that take tremendous risks. Malignant is a movie that starts slow, appearing to be another in the line of horror thrillers about a psychic connection between a troubled soul and the imaginary friend that seems to be coming back. The movie begins feeling like high-end camp in a flashback, takes a very serious and uncomfortable turn into domestic violence and miscarriages, and then builds into a psychic serial killer investigation where our main character (Annabelle Wallis) is having creepy visions of the killer exacting bloody revenge. For the first half of the movie, there's a lot to keep up with and it's easy to get confused with bland characters, their often baffling actions and decisions, and then it plops you down for heavy exposition via asylum VHS tapes. However, from that point forward, Wan lays out all his cards and it's so absurd, so entrancingly weird, and so enthusiastic about all of it, that you may burst out laughing in the best possible way. Before its drunken rampage of schlocky delight, Malignant is a horror mystery and stylishly directed with some bravura shots and angles. It's worth your time, but everything is in service to setting up the final act where it gets so much bigger, more bonkers, and deliriously more entertaining. Wan is clearly going for messy giallo horror camp and gives the audience permission to laugh along with the insanity. It acknowledges how goofy looking and bizarre its eventual monster looks, let alone the logistics and circumstances involved, and it all veers into that. Whereas Old felt like M. Night Shyamalan was trying to escape camp and kept falling back into its morass, Malignant feels expressly like the movie James Wan wishes to make. There's even a spooky abandoned child experiment-heavy hospital on a cliff, and rather than have something spooky happen, the character then safely arrives back home with an armload of incriminating medical VHS tapes. The deliberate asides, misdirects, and eventual revelations feel so purposeful to yank around the audience and deliver a frantic and unpredictable ride of a movie that leaves the audience screaming and howling with laughter. I can understand people hating Malignant. I can understand people loving Malignant. I can understand people having trouble even making sense of Malignant. However, you cannot watch this movie and have a passive response. I wish I could have seen this in a packed theater pre-COVID. Nate's Grade: B+
    Nate Z Super Reviewer

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