Malevolent Movie Review and summary
Netflix is one of the most popular video streaming services we have to date. It reinvented that way we watch television, going from a mail-order service to having hundreds of ready-to-watch movies and TV shows at our fingertips. Not too long ago, Netflix decided to take a step further and start making movies and TV shows exclusively to the streaming service. It won praise and spewed criticism from viewers who were interested in seeing where Netflix’s direction was going.
One that seemed particularly interesting was Malevolent, which came out in the fall of 2018. The trailer was pretty intriguing so I had high hopes for the outcome. Sadly, what I felt I got was an unfinished chunk of the movie that should have been kept in production at least for another year.
The story is about four young college students who earn money from producing fake paranormal investigations. The main character Angela, along with her brother Jackson and their spouses, Elliott and Beth, get a gig at a former foster home. Mrs Green, the owner, claims she keeps hearing mysterious child laughter and wants the team to investigate. Angela finds out a terrible story behind the foster home. Three foster girls were murdered by Mrs Green deranged son, Edmund. Later, Angela discovers that Mrs Green was actually the mastermind behind the murder of the girls. Angela and Jackson are eventually captured, Beth is murdered and Elliott is left for dead. Jackson ultimately gets killed, and it looks like Angela is next but Elliott makes a miraculous recovery and manages to kill Edmund. In the end, it’s actually the three spirit children who save the day, by screaming and forcing Mrs Green into submission.
I feel this movie lacks on the scary front. A lot of people might find this movie creepy and disturbing at some parts, but it’s only as scary as a homemade haunted house. The disappointing fact is that the jump scares lack in any lasting value. An example would be when Jackson finally sees one of the dead girls. There’s such a buildup to it but then we find that the girl appears in front of him and that’s it! Nothing exciting happens; no close-up, no screams, nothing.
The story itself is pretty straightforward. Four young people get themselves into a predicament that ultimately turns tragic. There is no breakaway that’s different but connected to the story’s plot. The movie starts out promising, with the main character’s dark introduction of her mentally ill mother who had ripped her eyes out and committed suicide. The sad thing is that it has nothing to do with the main plot. They drag it out to the point where it becomes just unappealing.
There is also a plethora of misconceptions scattered throughout the movie. Whenever Angela would sense a spirit, which was never fully introduced much less explained, she would get nosebleeds. It came across to me as more of a college student with an illicit drug problem. Another misconception would be the actions in the movie. Edmund gets his hands on the four students. He kills Beth, beats the crap out of Elliott, captures Jackson and totally ignores Angela. Elliott seems to get slaughtered by Mrs Green with a machete or something but comes out with merely scratches. The ghost girls scream at the end and “defeat” Mrs Green. Why couldn’t they do that before? Were they afraid? Were they cursed until Angela somehow managed to lift it?
If you’re looking for a horror movie to set the mood for a Halloween binge marathon, then Malevolent wouldn’t be a bad choice. It had its share of creepy moments, but there were so many incidents left unexplained that it’s hard to take this movie seriously. It’s good to know there are better horror movies out there leaving you shaken and satisfied rather than wanting to rip your own eyeballs out.