Malignant ★★★★

Blisters don’t die easy when they’re family. You could ask what the specific James Wan vein is, to the basic response of either “jumpscare extravaganza” or “personal horror through mainstream filters,” but if we are seeing anything here, it is the reglamourizing of a dream that Wan had once upon a time in piles of discarded Gialli and children’s cult horrors. Blood out of the front *and* back, laced and transfused with deeply sutured medical shock; the idea of realizing that your life crisis is less of a product of yourself and more of a product of a system/foundation/collective embracing you into a trauma that you were never given the tools for. None of this is a return to form. It’s majorly a creative release. James was given the full reigns so that finally, after years of considering a crowd, he has the whole cot to play in. For the love of steriles, please let him do this more often.

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