Spoiler-Free Review of “Malignant” on HBO Max: Bizarre Blend of Genres

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“It’s all in my head…”

Malignant released on September 10th 2021. The supernatural horror film is currently available to watch in theaters and on HBO Max. It stars Annabelle Wallis, Maddie Hasson, George Young and Michole Briana White. It runs for approximately an hour and fifty minutes.

After experiencing some violent and shocking visions, a young pregnant woman begins to realize that they may actually be based in reality, linking them to her past.

Here is the trailer:

Malignant is directed by Saw’s James Wan, which could be extremely promising for horror fans, but does this film ever truly find its identity? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Images courtesy of HBO Max

Visually intriguing.

This entire film had so many stunning and unique visual effects. The use of perspective was also extremely well done. I thought this helped the film stand out from other supernatural horror films. The intensity was there, but in a different way. The body horror displayed was really disturbing as well…

Images courtesy of HBO Max

Decent beginning and ending.

The opening of the film was really creepy and intense. I was on the edge of my seat and looking over my shoulder quite a few times. The middle part of the movie fell off in terms of pacing for me, but the ending was shocking in a way and reeled me back in. The mystery at the core of the film also keeps you invested until the end although I am sure there will be mixed reactions to the reveal.

The Cons:

Images courtesy of HBO Max

Major identity crisis.

Several genres blended together during this film, which made the plot jump around so much. The middle of the film went in so many different directions and it was a little messy. I still don’t really know what this film was attempting to be and I started to really contemplate what I was actually watching, which was frustrating at times. Some of the reveals were pretty predictable as well, but I just felt like I was being tossed all over the place for the majority of the film.

Glosses over real issues.

Our main character went through quite a lot in her life and while these elements and flashbacks were introduced, they were never really developed and we are just supposed to accept that they happened and move on. I couldn’t connect that well to our main character even though Annabelle’s Annabelle Wallis presented us with a solid and chilling performance. 

So am I in or out?

Images courtesy of HBO Max

I’m 50/50 on this one…

The visual effects and unique use of perspective presented us with a lot of chilling moments, but the lack of a solid identity made this film go off the rails several times. There were decent performances and the mystery was interesting enough to keep you watching until the end. This movie was a really weird watch for me, but it does have some redeeming moments. It just may not be what you were hoping for from the trailer…

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Malignant in the comments section below. Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!


Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl


It was only supposed to be temporary…but when Olivia Crewe accepts a new position that seems too good to be true, she soon discovers that twelve other girls previously had the same job as her. Only none of them lasted for more than thirty days. No notice. Nothing…right before they mysteriously disappeared without a trace.

My supernatural thriller Girl Number Thirteen is out now! I hope you enjoy!

Girl Number Thirteen is available here!

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Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

I live in Long Island, NY. I am obsessed with TV, movies, reading and writing! My top TV shows are Lost, Breaking Bad, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Prison Break, Charmed, Veronica Mars, and Beverly Hills 90210. My dog, Honey, loves TV too!

2 thoughts on “Spoiler-Free Review of “Malignant” on HBO Max: Bizarre Blend of Genres”

  1. I have to say I’m 50/50 on even watching it! I’m intrigued but unsure. What level would you say the body horror is at? I can take shocking as long as it’s quick!

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