The animated film from Disney, Frozen, was a huge hit upon its initial release and has remained a fan favorite ever since, with sisters Anna and Elsa soon becoming some of the studio’s most popular characters.
Meanwhile, on September 10th, Malignant was released in theatres and on HBO Max.
The plot of Malignant revolves around a young woman named Madison (Annabelle Wallis) who begins to experience visions of a mysterious entity committing murder after a home invasion murders her violent husband and causes her to miscarry.
When she learns that the killings are genuine, she is compelled to reminisce about her life before she was adopted, including memories of her ostensibly fictional buddy Gabriel.
As anyone who has seen it can confirm, what follows is a completely insane plotline that has elicited mixed emotions from critics and audiences alike.
At first, look, putting Malignant and Frozen in the same discourse may sound unusual, yet Wan has done just that in a comicbook.com comment.
The horror director says he was interested in examining the link between adopted siblings through Madison and her sister, Sydney (Maddie Hasson), and his screenplay co-writer Ingrid Bisu wanted to present a love tale in his picture, which has a twist ending. He compares the final product to Frozen:
”Here you have a story about Madison with her own blood relation, her own blood sibling, which was Gabriel, who turns out to be a horrible person. But yet her adopted sister, not blood relation in any way, is actually the one that she has the most connection with. That is the one that is the most loving. And I felt like that was such a cool story to come at it from that perspective.
And for Ingrid, she loves the idea of telling a love story, but it’s not a romantic story between the two leads. It’s a love story between the two sisters. And I love that. I haven’t quite seen that in a horror movie at least to this degree. And it’s funny that we jokingly refer to it as, it’s like the horror version of Frozen. It’s like Anna and [Elsa]. But it really is like the horror version of Frozen. It’s sisterly love, it’s sisterly bond. And one of the many themes that the film deal with is the idea that can you be close to the people that you don’t necessarily share blood relation with? And what we want to kind of say in this film is it’s possible.”
Madison spends Malignant looking for the blood connection she believed she was lacking, and she finds it in Gabriel, whose relationship with her is practically parasitic, according to Wan.
Finally, she understands that Sydney already had the link she was yearning for and that she had long before chosen her over Gabriel. “And we simply felt that it was something vital for the film,” Wan says.
The film places a strong focus on sibling relationships, and Madison and Sydney’s sisterly affection is vital to how Malignant resolves its twisting third act.
Madison’s birth mother is present to witness the Elsa-and-Anna moment between them, but she remains a distant observer, because of Wan’s emphasis on adopted relationships.
So there are some similarities between Malignant and Frozen – albeit fans of Disney’s modern classic should make sure they can stomach some gruesome body horror first.
Warning! Spoilers ahead for Malignant.
The concept of parasitic twins, which is central to Malignant’s mainshock, has dismal real-life parallels.
The answer to the movie’s underlying mystery, which was the identity of the villain, Gabriel, was revealed by the twin reveal.
It was evident from the start that Malignant would be different from James Wan’s previous horror films.
Malignant, Wan’s first horror film since 2016’s The Conjuring 2, wasn’t your typical ghost story with jump scares.
Unlike The Conjuring or Insidious movies, where the protagonist, Madison (Annabelle Wallis), sees weird, horrific things at night, the subject of her worries isn’t a ghost or a demon.
Madison and her sister, Sydney (Maddie Hasson), fought to find out what was really going on throughout the film, with various twists and turns along the way.
Gabriel, who was first assumed to be an imagined companion from Madison’s traumatic past, turned out to be much more.
His close ties to Madison’s life prior to her adoption gave the impression that he was a forgotten sibling, but this was just half of the truth.
Malignant finally disclosed the game-changing bombshell about who and what Gabriel is in the third act of the polarising James Wan film.
The killer Madison kept having visions of was her parasitic twin, according to a video taken at the Simion Research Hospital of a young Madison. Here’s what it is, how it differs in real life, and what it means for a future Malignant sequel.
Explanation of Malignant – Gabriel Twist
Sydney and her mother Jeanne (Susanna Thompson) were shocked to learn that Gabriel was a monstrous lifeform linked to Madison’s back in the video they were watching.
Dr. Florence Weaver (Jacqueline McKenzie) said that Gabriel is Madison’s “parasitic twin,” made up of hair, teeth, bones, tissues, and muscles. A parasitic twin is generated when two developing embryos in the womb do not separate properly, according to her.
As a result, one becomes “dominant” and the other “underdeveloped.”
It differs from conjoined twins in that the “parasitic twin” is reliant on the body of the dominant sibling. Because the underdeveloped twin “feeds” on the other, this connection is referred to be “parasitic.”
Because he and Madison share the same brain, Gabriel is able to take control of her. By seizing control, he may effectively lock her up in “a mental prison,” stopping her from acting while he’s in charge.
Doctors at the hospital were compelled to medically remove as much of Gabriel from Madison’s back as they could because of the detrimental, physical toll he had on her body as a child – portrayed by Mckenna Grace from The Conjuring.
Gabriel was kept alive – to some extent – due to concerns that “complete removal” might result in her death. What remained of him was repressed into the recesses of her brain.
Over the next few years, the surviving piece communicated with Madison on a regular basis but was barred from assuming direct control until the events of Malignant.
\Madison’s violent husband’s head trauma “awakened” Gabriel, causing him to go on a killing spree.
Are Parasitic Twins Real?
Gabriel’s nature as a parasitic twin is fictionalized in the film, but it has some basis in reality. Parasitic twins are similar to the definition given by Dr. Weaver in James Wan’s Malignant, in that they are formed when two embryos do not fully separate during development, with one growing into the dominant, healthy twin.
Only a few bodily parts and organs (if any) are present in the “parasitic” twin, and they vary depending on the instance. The twin may just have a head, a torso, and a pair of legs that the dominant twin cannot control.
The existence of a parasitic twin raises a number of medical difficulties, similar to those faced by young Madison in Malignant.
Because the human body can’t usually tolerate additional body appendages for an extended period of time, the parasitic twin must often be removed in order for the other to have a healthy existence.
It’s vital to note that real-life parasitic twins aren’t aware, which means they can’t think for themselves and can’t take over the host’s body. The premise of Malignant’s Gabriel possessing Annabelle Wallis’ Madison is far more evolved and terrifying.
Will she return?
Madison developed the ability to do to Gabriel what he had done to her during Malignant’s conclusion. Madison turned the tables by putting him in a “mental prison” of her own design at the moment where they engaged in her head.
Madison has what it takes to reject Gabriel’s attempts to gain control now that she realizes what’s going on. Madison declared, with newfound confidence, that she’ll be ready to stop him the next time he attempts to emerge.
She is, after all, the dominant twin, so it’s only natural that she would have a stronger grip on their combined brain.
While the odds have swung in her favor in their battle, the ending does not necessarily eliminate Gabriel from the picture. He’ll be a threat for as long as they live.
Though Malignant 2 has yet to be announced, James Wan’s comments suggest that, while a sequel wasn’t planned from the start, the film has the potential to become a series.
Furthermore, Gabriel’s return is a possibility, as his awareness has been suppressed, allowing him to take over at a later time. Malignant’s final picture, which included a lamp and a flickering light, foreshadowed this very concept.
Madison believes she can stop him, but maintaining the level of attention required to keep him at away will be challenging.
Gabriel may be able to take advantage of situations in the future, such as Madison having an emotional breakdown, another head injury, or a moment of weakness.
If Madison lets her guard down even once, Gabriel may return in Malignant 2 to wreak havoc on his dominant twin and Madison’s sister.