For a movie named after the antagonist, Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man has a villain problem.
At one point, Cecelia (Elisabeth Moss) asks an interesting question: her husband is famous and wealthy, and can have anyone — so why her? In one question, she essentially admits her longstanding insecurity at having a handsome rich man choose her for marriage, and also gets at the more pressing anxiety: why continue to fixate on her after the end of everything? Why go to such extreme lengths to torture and entrap her? Why not just let her go?
The movie’s answer seems to simply be: because he’s crazy. He’s not exactly like the Joker in The Dark Knight, who wants to watch the world burn just for the sake of it, but more like the loony villain in Skyfall whose absurdly complex revenge scheme isn’t because he’s diabolically clever but because he’s just plain nuts.
Here’s a free thesis idea for film theory students: compare/contrast movies about men who may or may not be going insane (Shutter Island, Shock Corridor, Jacob’s Ladder), vs. those about women (Repulsion, Unsane, Horse Girl).
Forget about the advanced optics in the invisibility suit – the real money must be in that amazing floorboard-creaking-prevention tech, right?