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Pure cinematic wildfire. Ends up being almost as thoughtful as it is gleefully absurd, with Whannel displaying exceptional restraint in terms of exploring the film's anatomical obsessions without ever getting ahead of himself, and his aesthetic devotion to the pervading darkness of this whole beautifully mad thing more or less elevates it beyond the realm of marginally engaging sleaze. Additionally, in an over-saturated market full of Black Mirrors and insufferable Black Mirror wannabes, it's a bit of a blessing to see a tech-paranoia thriller that seems less concerned with making any bigger statement beyond what its surface seems to suggest.

Naturally, the SAW and INSIDIOUS scribe continues to struggle with entertaining any genuine sense of realism, but maybe that's why he exceeds in the realm of high concept fantasy. In this case, he just goes for it, and the results speak for themselves. Though all the action here is marvelously choreographed, it's the first set piece that introduces STEM's inexplicable capabilities and ends with a particularly gruesome punchline involving a kitchen knife that might end up being one of the year's finest (not to mention funniest; I was howling the whole way through).

Went in expecting less, walked out with more. Officially stoked for anything Whannel has in the cards for the foreseeable future, and hoping that the human body once again becomes an increasingly popular and unabashed obsession of many a genre filmmaker as soon as possible.

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