Logan Kenny’s review published on Letterboxd:
the autistic character in this film isn’t a character, he is a device. the only traits he’s established to have are the ones that neurotypical society have defined us by, he melts down, he is sensitive to sounds, he cannot interact socially in a normal way, he is bullied. he exists in a state of constant torment or anxiety because that’s the only human understanding of autism that the writers have, a human being who is just an amalgamation of tics and trauma. but then, his inhumanity is used as a trope, he is treated as this mystical being, this savant, this genius above humanity to work for plot related reasons, he exists to keep the story rolling, a cypher for hacked narrative. he’s supposedly the evolution of the human race, a being with the memory of a computer and the ability to transcend common human limits, he is reduced to an exaggerated portrayal of whatever abilities he has. his worth, as a human being, is defined by his intelligence and his abilities, not his character, not his personality, because these things don’t exist to neurotypicals looking in. they see us as either creatures in a zoo to ogle at in awe while they exploit us for personal benefit, or hideous beasts to deform and shame, and this film in all its misguided glories reinforces these toxic ideas, reinforces the perceptions that autistic people aren’t people, that we are not human. i don’t want to be a superhero, or a transcendent being of supreme knowledge and ability, i want to be treated like a person, i want to have my feelings and my needs met without the threat of eugenics, abuse or death, i want to be able to exist in a world that’s not designed for me. this film didn’t make me triggered, it didn’t break me down into tears, it just made me sad that this is what most people view us as, devices like apple products to assist you, or renegade balls of chaos that are threats to the nature of humanity, that shouldn’t exist. and that makes me sad.
the scene that fully describes the predator is the scene where olivia munn says “some people believe that people on the spectrum don’t have a disorder, that they’re the next step in human evolution” right after a scene where a grown man calls him retarded behind his back as a joke, that the audience is supposed to find funny. we are retarded apparently, but also the next step in the evolution of a dying race, so thanks shane, really honoured here. the movie itself shows absolutely no knowledge about autism, the meltdown sequence is honestly one of the funniest things i’ve ever seen because it’s so bafflingly incompetent and ignorant, it made me laugh out of a defence mechanism. absolutely baffling that no one consulted anyone on the crew that this isn’t how anything works, you dipshits.
the movie detached from its portrayal of autism is staggeringly awful, one of the worst edited, written and directed movies i’ve seen in years, shots lack basic competence, edits lack cohesion or placement, the characters are non existent, the jokes are ableist and also Badly Written, the film is half exposition and half extraneous gory violence for shock value, the lighting’s horrific and half the time i had no clue what was going on, it both starts and ends like a marvel movie, no actor stands out for a good reason, it’s fucking boring etc etc. genuinely feels unfinished, and don’t believe that the content’s in any way salvageable from the hectic disaster that’s on our screens. dismal, vile bullshit. we’d be better off forgetting this film exists.