Spoilers may follow
Frankenstein stories seem to be pretty popular these days. Not only did we have Victor Frankenstein last year, there’s been plenty of films in the vein of Shelley’s novel released in recent years such as Ex Machina, Splice and the most recent release at this time of writing, Morgan. Like the Frankenstein monster, the titular Morgan (Anya Taylor-Joy) is an artificially-created creature with a humanoid appearance, who then turns against the creators. Shelley’s monster was equal parts sympathetic and frightening, so too should be Morgan, yet the film comes up short in that regard.
Morgan is a film that moves quickly; perhaps a little too quickly. When you’ve finished watching it, you feel like you’ve watched a 45 minute episode of an anthology series rather than a 90 minute movie. Thus it feels like we haven’t spent as much time getting to know Morgan as we would have liked. The film reveals that she’s spent most of her life in a laboratory, likes when she gets to go outside and you don’t want to make her angry, yet it feels like more could be learned about her, more that could make the viewer sympathise with her.
This affects the other characters as well. The other focal character in this movie is troubleshooter Lee Weathers (Kate Mara) but it feels like more could have been done with her as well, as with the other scientists supervising Morgan. There’s a twist at the end, but it’s one you could probably guess.
Still, the film does make good use of its visuals. As if to emphasise the Frankenstein parallels, the house that holds Morgan is a spooky monochrome mansion holding a cold laboratory; a perfect contrast to the outside world Morgan wants to visit.
Morgan is a decent enough film, it just feels undercooked. It’s the directorial debut of Luke Scott (son of Ridley Scott), and while I feel this film isn’t as good as it could have been, it does make me want to see more from him.
PS. I’m putting up reviews of this and Sausage Party on the same day, because I saw those movies on the same day. I guess you can say they are somewhat similar in that they feature creatures who want to go out into the world, and both have a character called Brenda.