Morgan (2016)

Rated R
Sci-Fi / Thriller
Try pairing with:  Tortilla-Crusted Chicken

Jen’s Rating:  B

With nothing good to watch on television Justine, Jeremy and I search to find something stimulating… With 3 glasses of wine in hand we come across the trailer for Morgan. The trailer didn’t look bad but it didn’t look great either, yet we still decided to give it a try.  I didn’t know many of the actors but Paul Giamatti is in it so it couldn’t be too dreadful.

Anya Taylor-Joy plays Morgan, which you assume is a little girl with some sort of ability or illness at first.  She is locked up in this dull colorless room, wearing dull grey clothing due to unforeseen circumstances. Later you find out that Morgan is a lab created human girl who grows rapidly.

Dr. Alan Shapiro, played by Paul Giamatti was sent to the remote facility by headquarters to evaluate Morgan and decide if she should be terminated. Lee Weathers, played by Kate Mara was brought in to over see the whole evaluation and was ordered to exterminate her should the evaluation go wrong. Oh boy did it go wrong!!!

Throughout the movie you sympathize for Morgan yet fear her at the same time. I had no idea who Anya Taylor-Joy was before this movie. She blew me away by doing an amazing job of playing Morgan.  Mara and Joy did an excellent job of allowing their characters interaction. Therefore, I give Morgan a B. It is definitely worth watching!

Jeremy’s Rating:  B

In this sci-fi thriller by Luke Scott, Lee Weathers (Kate Mara) is an employee of what appears to be a DNA research firm who is sent to a facility in the middle of nowhere to assess a project that is going on at that location.  This project is called Morgan; an artificially created humanoid that learns at an exponential rate and has abilities beyond that of a normal being, who also has had apparent violence in her past.  Played by Anya Taylor-Joy, Morgan is obviously confused, frightened, and less than happy that she is being viewed as an expense line on a budget and is questioned by Dr. Alan Shapiro, a cameo by Paui Giamatti.  Things go less than promising during their interview and this brings Weathers to her conclusion to terminate the Morgan project.

After several scientists on the project flat out refuse to perform the termination operation and quit, Weathers assumes the responsibility to do it on her own and things go horribly wrong causing the situation to quickly spiral out of control.  Morgan is not all that she seems and obviously doesn’t want to die and quickly begins her escape from the facility, while being pursued by Weathers.  The near-future science fiction elements of the film really draw you in if you are into learning new and interesting things, despite the fact that much of it is still fictional.  The faceoff between Lee and Morgan is greatly underplayed by the emotions that the scientists on the project have for their “child” whom they created, and all the interaction throughout the film keeps you a bit uneasy, but still anxious to see what will happen next.

Everyone in the film puts forth a fantastic effort, and their roles are all acted extremely well.  Even the characters that you want to bond with are treated appropriately, and none of them fall into the standard sci-fi tropes that permeate films of the genre these days.  This was a great rental on a whim.  It is usually very hard to get Jen to agree to any science fiction, unless it is comic-book based or based in outer space, but we were both a fan of this.  This was the first time I had caught Anya Taylor-Joy in a film, and then saw her shortly afterward in Split.  The interaction and subtleties between her and Mara in the film really make it feel real.  I give this one a solid B, and recommend that anyone who likes a good thriller or enjoys a more reality-based science fiction work to check this out!

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