Martha (Eline Schumacher) works as a cleaner in a local factory and she is very much alone. The men at her work all look down at her, not only because of her position, but because she’s a woman. One man, Luc (Pierre Nisse) takes pleasure in tormenting her and one day he takes it too far as he sexually assaults her.
The only man in her life that she can turn to is her brother, Félix, (Benjamin Ramon) but once she learns sees a different side of him, their relationship changes and even brings them a little closer.
Megalomaniac is a highly disturbing horror written and directed by Karim Ouelhaj. A film that never lets the audience get a moments peace as it hammers home just how vile and thought provoking it can truly be.
At the centre of the film is Martha and Schumacher’s performance is as profound as the film itself. As her life gets worse and she goes deeper into self-hatred, the audience can see Martha becoming broken and for some that may lead to pity and to others it may lead to fear.
However, Megalomaniac’s dark nature is not merely to shock its audience, but to also expose them a side of life that they may find uncomfortable. So uncomfortable in fact that it’s hard to watch, but also hard to look away.
Just when the audience may think that they’ve seen everything that the film can give them, Megalomaniac goes further, only to ensure that the audience gets the point. Misogyny and the patriarchy can be a difficult subject to tackle, with some finding it easier to appease the male audience. However, it feels like director Ouelhaj wants to drive the message home and does it unflinchingly.
Possibly one of the best horrors if not one of the best films of the year, Megalomaniac will stay with you long after the credits roll. Visually striking and truly mind-breaking in a way that cleverly spells out everything it wants to say, Megalomaniac feels like it will come for you in the middle of the night and stay in your head forever.
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