The Invisible Man Reminds Us of Real-World Horrors But Fails to Live Up to a Long Legacy

Since Claude Rains first donned the moniker of H.G. Wells’ invisible man in 1933, Hollywood has struggled to raise the character above his sightless premise. Numerous takes on Rains’ character came out between the ‘30s and ‘40s, and the story has been adapted many times over since then. Now, with Universal hoping to resurrect its damaged Dark Universe of horror characters, it’s time to give The Invisible Man another shot. Gone is Rains’ flamboyant portrayal of a scientist gone mad and in its place is a story about gaslighting and abuse. Despite Elisabeth Moss’ affecting performance, Leigh Whannell’s script crumbles under the weight of wanting to please all comers. Read More >>

What The Witcher Gets Wrong (and Right) About Disability Narratives

The world of fantasy has been one of the few genres to regularly include disabled characters, though this inclusion has always come with the concept of disfigurement and grotesquerie. One of the most famous disabled fantasy characters, George R.R. Martin’s Tyrion Lannister, is described in the first volume of the A Song of Ice and Fire book series as walking on “stunted legs” with “a head too large for his body” and “a brute’s squashed-in face beneath a swollen shelf of brow.” The casting of Peter Dinklage helped to rectify this overly exaggerated description of a disabled character, but it speaks to how the disabled often find themselves in fantasy: as a source of terror and pity, with their strength often presented as a vengeful outlet for their bitterness. Read More >>

The Lion King Is a Gorgeous But Completely Unnecessary Retelling

Just two months after releasing a colourful, if kooky, reboot of Aladdin, Disney plays it completely safe with The Lion King. Fearful of changing a single hair on Simba’s photorealistic head, director Jon Favreau tells audiences the exact same story they saw in 1994, making the most minor of concessions to avoid receiving Gus van Sant/Psycho-levels of criticism. Despite the rehash feeling, the astounding hyperrealism of the animals and locations, coupled with a comic pair that runs away with the show, helps The Lion King retain some freshness worth experiencing. Read More >>