Universal has released a trailer for its reboot of The Invisible Man. In the wake of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's success, other studios have tried to launch their own highly-profitable shared universes. Universal, in particular, attempted to resurrect its monster movie franchises by hiring actors like Javier Bardem and Johnny Depp to star in its so-called Dark Universe. Things didn't work out, however, so the studio is now joining forces with Blumhouse and writer-director Leigh Whannell for a standalone Invisible Man reboot that could lead to similar remakes in the future.
The first images from The Invisible Man were released yesterday, offering a sneak peek at Elisabeth Moss as the film's main character, Cecilia Kass. In terms of plot, the movie follow Cecilia as she flees her abusive boyfriend (The Haunting of Hill House's Oliver Jackson-Cohen) one night, in an effort to hide and begin rebuilding her life. Cecilia is later told her ex has committed suicide, but gradually comes to suspect he may not be dead at all. And judging by the trailer, it's safe to say she's right.
Universal dropped its trailer for The Invisible Man online this morning, and will presumably screen it in theaters with this week's horror movie release, Doctor Sleep. You can check it out, below.
The trailer offers a fairly revealing look at The Invisible Man reboot, confirming that Cecilia's ex (a brilliant and wealthy scientist) fakes his death, turns himself invisible, and tortures her in a way that, to those on the outside, makes it look like she's losing her grasp on reality. Having written all four Insidious movies (and directed Insidious: Chapter 3), Whannell clearly has a firm lock on how to create suspense and horror as a filmmaker, and has seemingly put that skill to good use here. He also demonstrated a talent for crafting visually inventive sequences with his work on last year's own sci-fi horror-thriller Upgrade, which should further serve him well on The Invisible Man. Not to mention, the low-budget scares teased here come off as a better fit for this particular Universal monster than a tentpole approach (a la the Dark Universe).
As has been brought up in the past, The Invisible Man has an overall timely, post-#MeToo vibe to it, and in a good way. By adding a horror twist, the reboot has the potential to explore an intense story about a woman trying to confront her abuser (even when those who're closest to her start to question her sanity) in ways that are affecting without being exploitive. There've already been a few mainstream horror movies that've tried to tackle related issues to mixed results (last month's Countdown was pretty terrible at it), but The Invisible Man looks and sounds like one of the smarter attempts so far. At the very least, the script was strong enough to get the award-winning Moss - who generally stays away from franchise fare - onboard, so that bodes well.
- The Invisible Man (2020) release date: Feb 28, 2020