Everyone’s favourite see-through scientist (sorry Invisible Woman) is back in this new thriller starring Elizabeths Moths.
Following Tom Cruise’s instant destruction of the Universal Dark Universe (meaning we’ll never see Johnny Depp as the Invisible Man), the studio teams up with Blumhouse for a fresh spin on the H. G. Wells character. This timely take on gaslighting sees optics expert Adrian Griffin (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) moonlighting as transparent tormentor of his girlfriend Cecilia (Moss). Unusually for an Invisible Man movie it focuses on the eponymous experimenter’s victim, who flees his abusive grasp only to have him fake his own death and continue to terrorise her in filmy form.
The Invisible Man is made noticeable by this feminist perspective and patient direction by Leigh Whannell, whose camera lingers in the corner of rooms without overplaying the monster who lurks there. Essentially a stalker flick where the stalker happens to be invisible, A Nightmare on Elm Street managed the same trick with infinitely more wit back in 1984 and Whannell’s two-hour runtime leaves little to the imagination. But Moss continues to be on a roll, even if her Scientology adds more than a little irony to the story’s emphasis on psychological control and Cecilia’s opening escape from a compound.
Less fun but more thoughtful than the 1933 version, The Invisible Man is what Cruise’s The Mummy should have been: a horror film. Here’s hoping we get a prequel about his grandmother called The Invisible Nan.