Warner Bros. just dropped the first trailer for their upcoming film “Malignant” starring Annabelle Wallis. The movie is the latest from James Wan, director of a handful of famous horror flicks from “The Conjuring” to “Saw.” He is also recently directed “Aquaman” in the most bizarre career pivot since Michael Jordan tried to play baseball.
The film’s official synopsis is, “paralyzed by fear from shocking visions, a woman’s torment worsens as she discovers her waking dreams are terrifying realities.” From the trailer you can quickly surmise that these “visions” are of people who are being murdered around her city.
It seems these trippy, horrific visions are forced upon her by some entity she refers to as “Gabriel.” At one point she also calls it “the Devil.” If the Devil were to give himself a more human name, I would hope it’s scarier than Gabe.
The trailer showcases the film’s creepy concept and goes for a handful of jump scares. It also is incredibly…contrived. This film’s trailer is perhaps the most cliché to come out of 2021.
It features eerie VHS home videos, demonic possession, seizure-inducing cross-cutting, the font from “Stranger Things,” and Wallis widening her eyes dramatically in every shot. Best of all: the necessary “bwuahhh” sound effect that has infected nearly every trailer since “Inception” popularized it in 2010. Hopefully this is just lazy marketing, and we are still in for a frightful horror from James Wan. You can’t judge a movie by its trailer.
“Malignant” will release in theaters and on HBO Max on September 10th, 2021.