Thursday, 01 September 2016 00:00

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Review written by Jon Patch with 2 paws out of 4

Morgan

Twentieth Century Fox and Scott Free Productions present an R rated, 110 minute, Drama, Horror, Mystery, directed by Luke Scott and written by Seth W. Owen with a theater release date of September 2, 2016.

 

When a research facility that was doing tests on a hybrid biological organism otherwise known as Morgan (Anya Taylor-Joy) has an issue between Dr. Kathy Grieff (Jennifer Jason Leigh) and the test subject a Risk Management Consultant known as Lee Weathers (Kate Mara) is sent in to determine if the subject in question should be terminated. It seems Morgan was the facilities third try at creating a new life and for the most part they seemed to succeed but when Morgan becomes emotional she also becomes out of control and the last thing the organization wants is for her to get out.

The facility is located up in the forests far away from civilian life and a group of researchers are there conducting tests on Morgan who grows quickly and at the current age of five she looks to be in her late teens. Dr. Lui Cheng (Michelle Yeoh) also known to Morgan as mother is running the facility with the help of Dr. Simon Ziegler (Toby Jones) assisted by Dr. Amy Mender (Rose Leslie) the behaviorist who has a special bond with Morgan, Dr. Darren Finch (Chris Sullivan) and Dr. Brenda Finch (Vinette Robinson) both happen to have a friendship with the girl, Skip Vronsky (Boyd Holbrook) the nutritionist and Ted Brenner (Michael Yare) the caretaker. Kept in a glass room that is monitored 24/7 all Morgan thinks about is one day getting out and returning to her favorite spot at the lake that she had visited one time with Amy against the facility rules. Other than the incident with Kathy the test subject seems to be doing well even Lee decides to spend more time with her. All takes a change for the worst when Morgan is up for evaluation and Dr. Alan Shapiro (Paul Giamatti) makes a trip to give Morgan her test. Let’s just say Morgan got a mouth full of Alan during their time together!

Time has become crucial and Lee and Dr. Cheng decide that Morgan must be terminated although several of the other doctors decide differently. Soon thereafter Morgan is on a run for her life and only one person can possibly stop her before its too late. The last thing they want is another Helsinki incident. There is collateral damage but Morgan seeks happiness and she knows exactly where that is but when it comes down to the final faceoff between Morgan and one other only one stands and she is claimed as perfect.

I did not dislike this film at all but I did find it predictable and a little boring towards the middle with the over-development of some of the supporting characters. I mean the direction starts out fine keeping my interest but about an hour in to the story I began to lose a little interest but thankfully things take a turn for the better as a viewer but worse for the characters as one by one they begin to encounter their destiny. I found the writing to be interesting but maybe it could have been a bit more focused on the leads and less on the background noise. A good score and some beautiful countryside help the feel of the story and even the scene with the deer albeit graphic had some thoughts of right from wrong but overall possible compassion. In the end I felt a bit cheated when all comes to an easy crashing end since all along the final players seemed tough as nails.

I felt that the leads were just a bit too robotic. Mara and Taylor-Joy are intriguing but almost a bit too stiff making them seem a bit boring that includes Yare as well. Yeoh, Jason Leigh and Jones are not given a lot to do as is Sullivan and Robinson but they definitely serve their purpose. Leslie is a nice addition bringing some life into a somewhat slow moving story and the possible relationship between Holbrook and Mara may have been interesting if the story took a turn for the better but in the end you will know why it did not. I’m a big fan of Giamatti but he tends to come and go here but for the amount of time he spends on film he is very strong. Overall the concept has been done before with even a bit more girth but at least some of the fight scenes in this story kick some butt and help to bring some life into a mediocre story line.

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