Possessor (Uncut.) Review.

No beating around the bush with this one. For fans of extreme cinema, Brandon Cronenberg second feature is an absolute joy. Starring Andrea Riseborough as a body-swapping assassin it’s a gloriously gory, unbelievably stylish splatterfest that represents all the core elements of solid genre film making in 2020. There’s just enough substance in the core premise complementing Cronenbergs incredibly strong visual eye as a director. Riseborough delivers a strong turn in the central role. Underneath all the wonderfully visceral spectacle the film does take some time to examine the mental and psychological effects a job like this would have on a potential employee. This is complemented with solid work from Christopher Abbott playing the body that Riseborough has to inhabit on the job that takes up the majority of the film’s narrative. Combined with some trippy but restrained visuals this gives the audience a good idea of what the central experience is like from both sides of the fence. the set pieces are wonderfully nasty without the need to get po-faced about it or provide some excruciating meta-commentary on just how violent narrative like this can be ( like Nicolas Winding Refn but without the grating sense of pretension.) Proceedings will be far too extreme for some viewers ( especially in its uncut form.) The kind of genre audience who it is very much for will lap it up (deservedly so.) If there’s a flaw to point out it’s that the opening act takes a little while to get going as all mechanics and scenario are set up. That said the pay off in the way the narrative unfolds it’s well worth the journey it takes to get there.
Possessor is the kind of film built for cult audiences of the future. An awesomely nasty slice of genre entertainment that has enough substance in the core premise and narrative to keep audiences engaged Beyond the nepotism angle Brandon Cronenberg seems like a hugely exciting genre filmmaker and this critic will approach whatever his next project with excitement.

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