The Invisible Man

Joseph Ferrer, Staff Writer

The fear of the unknown delivers a sense of dread that can cause distress even when no immediate threat is apparent. Horror movies often capitalize off of this fear by making viewers uncertain as to when danger will surface. By having the main threat of the film be completely unseen, The Invisible Man creates an engaging horror experience that puts viewers on edge throughout the entire film.

Based on the 1897 novel of the same name, The Invisible Man focuses on Cecilia Kass (Elisabeth Moss) who runs away from her affluent, abusive partner Adrian Griffin (Oliver Jackson-Cohen). Soon after she escapes, Cecilia discovers Adrian has committed suicide. However, after a stranger series of events, Cecilia becomes convinced that Adrian has come back as an invisible entity to torment her for leaving.

The film eerily captures the disturbing nature of abusive relationships as the invisible entity interferes with nearly every aspect of Cecilia’s life from her job to her relationships. Cecilia soon loses control over her own life and Elisabeth Moss’s performance excellently showcases the dread and anxiety she experiences as a result. While Jackson-Cohen may not be physically on screen for the majority of the film, his performance greatly brings out the manipulative nature of Adrian as well. Both performances highlight the uncomfortable nature of The Invisible Man.

As a horror film, The Invisible Man capitalizes off of its premise by making the viewer feel on edge in nearly every scene. Having the main threat of the film be invisible results in a constant sense of danger, with every scenario having the possibility of a grim ending. The cinematography emphasizes this through the use of shots where characters move out of frame, but the camera stays still, suggesting that the invisible perpetrator is at work. The special effects surrounding the invisible man are creative as well. Many signs of the invisible man’s presence are subtly clever such as the slight imprint on a chair or a barely noticeable breath of air outside. The Invisible Man’s score helps make the film even more frightening with its focus on piano and strings creating a chilling atmosphere throughout the film.

Strong performances from the film’s cast alongside unique cinematography help make The Invisible Man a thrilling horror film that explores the harsh realities of being in an abusive relationship.