Possessor ★★★★½

2020 RANKED

The most unsettling horror film I’ve seen since Climax, and the best Sci-Fi / Horror film I’ve seen in recent years. While certainly it has elements of other Sci-Fi / Horror films, it feels unlike anything I’ve seen before in its execution and combination of visceral imagery and concepts.

Possessor is only the second feature film from 40-year-old director Brandon Cronenberg, son of acclaimed body-horror director David Cronenberg, and it is certainly an impressive second feature. The film follows a contract killer who “possesses” people via a machine in order to carry out her assassinations. The film opens with the lead (Andrea Riseborough) in the process of a possession and assassination in order to set up the film’s premise. The remainder of the film essentially follows the entire process of her next possession and assassination which, ultimately, suffers complications. 

If you have any love for Sci-Fi / Horror and / or David Cronenberg (the director’s son channels him heavily in terms of content and themes albeit with his very own unique style and execution) then this is an absolute MUST-SEE film.

Possessor is a brilliant work of visual horror. While the film is a bit thin on character development, I was able to forgive that for its litany of technical choices and accomplishments which contribute to this film’s overall tone, atmosphere, and disturbing content. From the practical effects used for gore and other bizarre visuals (impossible to describe some of these visuals without seeing the film), the choice of colors, brutal violence, jarring editing choices and sound design to throw you into the character’s decent into this machine, haunting score, committed performances, and the visceral direction, there’s very little to dislike. In fact, it’s one of my favorite films of the year, and I would highly recommend it to all fans of horror.

Vincent liked this review