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Possessor (2020)

2:12 | Trailer
Possessor follows an agent who works for a secretive organization that uses brain-implant technology to inhabit other people's bodies - ultimately driving them to commit assassinations for high-paying clients.


Brandon Cronenberg
315 ( 75)
7 wins & 31 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Gabrielle Graham ... Holly
Hanneke Talbot ... Katherine
Matthew Garlick Matthew Garlick ... Elio
Daniel Park ... Policeman
Andrea Riseborough ... Tasya Vos
Jennifer Jason Leigh ... Girder
Hrant Alianak ... Lead Technician
Rachael Crawford ... Dr. Melis
Rossif Sutherland ... Michael Vos
Gage Graham-Arbuthnot ... Ira Vos
Kathy Maloney ... Reporter
Megan Vincent ... Alice
Danny Waugh ... Patrick
Christopher Abbott ... Colin Tate
Tuppence Middleton ... Ava Parse


Tasya Vos is a corporate agent who uses brain-implant technology to inhabit other people's bodies, driving them to commit assassinations for the benefit of the company. While she has a special gift for the work, her experiences on these jobs have caused a dramatic change in her, and in her own life she struggles to suppress violent memories and urges. As her mental strain intensifies, she begins to lose control, and soon she finds herself trapped in the mind of a man whose identity threatens to destroy her own.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


No Body is Safe

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody disturbing violence, strong sexual content, some graphic nudity, language and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


In the original script, Brandon Cronenberg did not write the character of Holly as belonging to any specific race. Gabrielle Graham's audition for the role impressed him greatly, which led him to cast her right away. In an interview with SyFy he elaborates: "[Graham] really just nailed the subtle, nuanced, and emotional aspects of that sequence. So I cast her for that reason. Obviously, if that character is Black, you can read that scene as saying the corporation has the other layer to their actions in scapegoating her, and especially in the current context, that becomes more relevant." See more »


Colin Tate: Just think, one day your wife is cleaning the cat litter and she gets a worm in her, and that worm ends up in her brain. The next thing that happens is she gets an idea in there, too. And it's hard to say whether that idea is really hers or it's just the worm. And it makes her do certain things. Predator things. Eventually, you realize that she isn't the same person anymore. She's not the person that she used to be. It's gotta make you wonder, whether you're really married to her... or married ...
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Alternate Versions

Possessor exists as a cut US R rated version and an uncut MPA Unrated Version titled Possessor Uncut. The producers were keen to differentiate between the two versions and the 'Uncut' tag is an official re-titling of the film. UK releases are the Uncut Version and are 18 rated. See more »


Ewnèt Yèt Lagegnesh
Written by Bahta Gèbrè-Heywèt
Performed by Bahta Gèbrè-Heywèt
Published by (c) CRC editions
(p) 1970 Amha Records under exclusive licence to Buda Musique
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User Reviews

5 May 2020 | by RendanlovellSee all my reviews

This should be retitled,"Too Much but also not enough". There are so many ideas pulling the movie in so many different directions. It's ideas the movie, but rarely does an idea get fully realized here. This has me torn on how I feel. On one hand, there is a unique tone to this. It's like Assassin's Creed meets inception. People possessing other people's bodies to preform hits on specific people for political or social gain is a solid premise on it's own. Throw in some great ultra violent gore effects, good performances, and some moody, atmospheric music and you get some really striking scenes. On the other hand, the movie is overly ambitious. There's so much it establishes there's no way it can accomplish it all, and it doesn't. This is exemplified in the first act which feels horribly rushed. We get less then 20 minutes establishing characters, premise, and themes. It feels like it can't wait to move through the set up and what results is a lack of investment from me. We hardly know who anyone is or why they are doing anything. The main character is having a psychological melt down as a result from over working inside this possessor machine but she only takes like a half day off to recover. Then she's right back to work. There's barely motivation for this and in her half day off all she does is sit around at home with her ex. You needed more scenes explaining to us what lead to her breaking up with him and more establishment of why she would want to go back to him. We don't know these people or their story and we leave them so quickly it's hard to care about them at all. We literally get one scene of her away from her work, and it's nothing out of the ordinary as far as normal day goes. Why is she a workaholic? Her home life seems fine to me. Why won't she tell her superiors that she's having a mental breakdown? Is it supposed to be a metaphor about her dependency on work to avoid her real life? If that's the case then why don't we get more scenes showing why she would be avoiding her life? It's a messy movie, full of vague characters and even murkier story progression. Even though the first act is rushed, at least it sets some interesting things up. The second act is where the movie really faulters though. It feels like the same scenes happening over and over again. It gets really tedious watching a character saying the possessed person is acting weird over and over. There are some cool, trippy, drug like sequences showing the main character having more internal breakdowns but I got the point after the first time. Yeah she's not stable enough to be in there and the longer she is, the worse it will get. I get it. We don't need to see it 27 times. This is weird because the first act has the exact opposite problem. Like Inception these people are trying to accomplish something by manipulating others for their gain. Unlike Inception, where the first half of the movie is establishing characters, story motivations, and potential speed bumps, Possessor only seems interested in establishing the story speed bumps. We don't get a clear sense of character motivation or why the story is happening in the first place. This possessor company wants to own this large tech company? But why? Who knows! The real story is about the Possessor and the Possessy who go to war over who should have control over the body. So why even mention that they want to absorb this tech company? Instead, say that she needs to kill these people just because they are evil or corrupt. That wouldn't change what the movie is going for and it would clean up the story a bit. The whole point is the struggle between the possessed dude and the possessor and coming to terms with the horrible things that happened. It's kinda like watching someone with split personality disorder. Which, again, is an idea that could've and should've been fleshed out. It only comes up near the end and is wrapped up so quickly I don't know why they even bothered. The first act is completely rushed, the second act is drawn out to no end, and the third act introduces more things it can't quite pull off. So...eh?

*2nd viewing edition* I liked this way more on second watch. Maybe it's the uncut version or maybe I just got it this time. The biggest theme explored is the idea that sometimes it's hard to tell who we really are. Are we so inspired by others to do things that we end up losing our sense of self? You could interpret this as a meditation on mental illness but I see it as every day life. The culture is so saturated by "hot takes", opinions, and people "looking out for our best interest" that it can truly be numbing. The disassociation we can feel could be as simple as everyday little things to life altering marriage. Who knows if we love them or if someone we love loves them for us. This is all beautifully captured and comes around full circle at the end. Again, it's possible I just didn't get it the first time around but, this uncut version somehow feels tighter. I was transfixed by it. The first act flows nicely, the second act escalates well, and the climax is thoroughly satisfying. Man, I think I feel a third viewing coming...

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Canada | UK | USA



Release Date:

2 October 2020 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Possessor See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$252,664, 4 October 2020

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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