M3GAN (Blu-ray Review)

The filmgoing year of 2023 has already begun to great success with the box office smash, well review and audience-liked horror comedy M3GAN. The film went beyond its viral marketing fun to become a film that stood all on its own just fine. One would have thought it would lead to a nice 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray release, but like many Blumhouse or James Wan projects, just a standard Blu-ray with mayyyyyybe a 4K later on down the road. M3GAN will include 3 featurettes and the Unrated Cut of the film (its not really a whole lot different). It will be available online and in stores on March 21st. You can order yourself a copy to be to you at or around the release by using the paid Amazon Associates link at the bottom of this review.


M3GAN is a marvel of artificial intelligence, a life-like doll programmed to be a child’s greatest companion and a parent’s greatest ally. Designed by brilliant toy-company roboticist Gemma (Allison Williams, Get Out), M3GAN can listen and watch and learn as she becomes friend and teacher, playmate and protector, for the child she is bonded to. As Gemma faces pressure at work from her boss (Ronny Chieng, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) to deliver a finished version of M3GAN, she suddenly becomes the unprepared caretaker of her newly orphaned 8-year-old niece, Cady (Violet McGraw, The Haunting of Hill House). Gemma decides to pair the M3GAN prototype with Cady in an attempt to resolve both problems—a decision that will have unimaginable consequences.

This latest “killer doll” flick from the producing likes of James Wan from the pen of the mighty Akela Cooper and helmed by Gerard Johnstone is a fun, big moment friendly, audience pleasing horror comedy. M3GAN is a film that truly has a handle on everything its doing and is pitch perfect in delivering what its setting out to accomplish. Its a film that knows how to freak out, to shock and to provide laughs. Laughter is the key ingredient in the film as it comes in both unsettling forms and genuinely silly ones. All the while it is reeling us in, engaging and putting us on a wavelength to buy into the terror and care for our characters as our comedian turns on them and starts knocking people off.

While not the first killer doll (She’s really not so much a doll, but…I’ll give you doll evolved), M3GAN is certainly an impressive creation. What this team has put together is a combined actor and animatronic puppet (and likely some CG touch up) performance that feels fully fledged and believable. Its quite amusing to watch her move around onscreen and to see her converse and make decisions. M3GAN was iconic from her first appearance in a trailer, but this movie cemented her as the real deal. And hell, her seeing “Titanium” to get Cady to sleep is likely going down as one of the funniest, most laugh out loud moments of a year that’s not even 1/4 of the way through. That scene also doubles as downright disturbing and creepy as well.

One key ingredient for the film is that the script realizes that just the robot isn’t enough, there needs to be a reason, a hook. And the depth of it really has to do with parenting. Not is prepared nor wants to be a parent in life and this script ties the M3GAN project in with someone falling into both those categories. As a parent of 2 myself, its a damn tough gig and not for everyone (even those who desire to become a parent). And I found a lot of relatability and sympathy for Allison Williams’ Gemma in the film. Both on paper and performances, she’s put together a quite realistic human here that I hope isn’t getting overlooked in the appreciation for the film. This is also another notch in a terrific horror resume she’s building up.

The 2023 film going year and the horror genre got off to a hell of a good start (And as of last weekend with Scream VI opening, its still going) with the box office smash and much talked about film, M3GAN. While certainly a fun flick in its own right, its a GREAT crowd movie as it really delivers a nice communal experience through laughter and fright. James Wan and Jason Blum is a deadly team up for film fans and so far this pair of off to a magnificent start!


Encoding: MPEG4-AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1

Layers: BD-50

Clarity/Detail: M3GAN arrives on Blu-ray (despite being shot in 4K) with your pretty standard, pretty excellent for Blu-ray presentation of a Blumhouse film. The digital image is crisp, clean and full of detail. It has a consistent color palette and features plenty of solid depth and work with night and shadow.

Depth:  Depth of field is rock solid. Despite the more intimate, claustrophobic cinematography some decent pushback on the interiors down hallways and the trees further back in the woods. Motion is smooth and natural with no issues stemming from jitter/blurring caused by a rapid camera or action movement.

Black Levels: Blacks are deep and rich here, with just a a slight gray tint to them. Shadows, nighttime scenes and dark clothing do well to not hide any information in pattern, texture or other fine details. No crushing witnessed.

Color Reproduction: This has a little bit of a muted palette made to contrast to make things M3GAN wears and her display room look more colorful and pop when they appear. Reds come through best, but there is some good saturation and work done with the blues on screen.

Flesh Tones: Skin tones are a little colder and consistent from start to finish. Everything from freckles, to wrinkles, dried blood, blemishes, wounds and more look authentic and clear as day.

Noise/Artifacts:  Clean


Audio Format(s): English 7.1 DTS-HD MA, Spanish 7.1 Dolby Digital Plus, French 5.1 Dolby Digital Plus

Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

Dynamics: M3GAN doesn’t have an Atmos track, but it has a pretty effective and playful 7.1 mix to trounce around your room. This balance really knows how to have vocals forward, good effective jumps with foley effects and then when to have the music kick in and take center stage. Its effective and engaging.

Height: N/A

Low Frequency Extension: The subwoofer really hits nicely with jumps, crashing, puncturing, exploding, shattering and then bass and drum in the music for the film.

Surround Sound Presentation: The room is well dressed and thinking of fun and room building in every moment. Rear and side channels not only provide ambiance, but add some nice heft to sound travel, add unique pieces of information and track offscreen activity to good effect.

Dialogue Reproduction: Vocals are clear and crisp.


M3GAN comes with the DVD edition and a redeemable digital code that redeems 2 versions of the movie. The Unrated Edition of the movie is featured on this release as well.

A New Vision of Horror (HD, 5:50) – “If people think of me as a killer doll filmmaker, let’s actually do one!” James Wan excitedly exclaims as this featurette talks about how they pulled off the film and tried to make a clear vision and distinct story and character to find its own place among the pack. This one highlights Wan’s work and the director Johnstone’s approach and passion that pulled it off.

Bringing Life to M3GAN (HD, 5:21) – This talks about how they brought the M3GAN robot to life. From concept, to design, animatronic, puppeteers and more. All the cast is floored in disbelief by how it was working with M3GAN on set. The puppeteers also go over how exactly she works.

Getting Hacked (HD, 3:44) – This piece goes over the deaths and set pieces in the film as well as the actress who played M3GAN in the film. Yes, they go over the dance scene.


M3GAN was always going to be a curiosity, but that it turned out to be such a fun, see with an audience horror comedy was a nice surprise. Bummer that as successful as it was, it is only getting a standard Blu-ray, but it is what it is. That said, it has a terrific presentation and some nice quick extras that are informative enough to make for a nice package for a modern movie. Pick it up at a solid sale price in the near future.

This is a paid Amazon Associates link


Brandon is the host, producer, writer and editor of The Brandon Peters Show (thebrandonpetersshow.com). He is also the Moderator/MC of the Live Podcast Stage and on the Podcast Awards Committee for PopCon (popcon.us). In the past 10 years at Why So Blu, Brandon has amassed over 1,500 reviews of 4K, Blu-ray and DVD titles.

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