Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Monsters (2010)

Two Americans decide to risk their lives by traveling through the Infected Zone -- a militarized zone in Mexico that is filled with giant monsters -- in order to return home to America, but what they find when they get there will be even more shocking... In the late 2000's, films like CLOVERFIELD, THE HOST, and THE MIST brought giant monster movies back to the big screens around the world in a huge way. One film that managed to fly under the radar and gain its own underground following was Gareth Edwards' MONSTERS, a movie whose enormous scale reaches far beyond its modest budget.

In MONSTERS, it isn't what you see that is the most frightening, but what you don't see. The giant creatures are always lurking just out of sight, hidden by the darkness, but their presence is constantly alluded to through the shifts in light and sound. It is most like Frank Darabont's stellar THE MIST in this way. While it isn't told in the same first-person perspective as CLOVERFIELD, it has the same general look and feel as many of the 'found footage' films thanks to the documentary-style filming and incredible attention to detail that is paid to the road signs and exteriors. Whitney Able and Scoot McNairy share a genuine chemistry on screen, and their unpolished performances lend them an instant credibility. MONSTERS also hides several significant political implications surrounding immigration law behind the brilliant guise of a monster movie. The title may seem misleading since there are really only a few monsters, but the underlying message might suggest that America's exclusionistic border policies make us the true monsters. Even though Edwards is sure to displease many fans with his minimalist approach and abrupt ending, MONSTERS is still a huge accomplishment for Independent SciFi and Horror!

Rating: 9/10.

If you liked MONSTERS, check out:
DISTRICT 9, CLOVERFIELD, THE MIST, CARRIERS, RIGHT AT YOUR DOOR, THE HOST.



6 comments:

  1. Carl: Count me convinced. This one looks like a throwback to 50's B-movie sci-fi! And the beauty part? It's on Netflix instant streaming! I'll be watching this baby in a day or so. Thanks for the tip!!

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  2. Carl: Just watched it last night. I agree with your post entirely. Yep, I was disappointed by the abrupt ending (which translates to "I want more monster scenes"); but the film is so well done, the details and atmosphere of the film so finely crafted, that I give it a big thumbs up, too! I thought this more a character-driven indie film than a monster movie, but that ain’t necessarily a bad thing.

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  3. Then we are on the exact same page Mykal, that final statement is entirely true, which is what makes it such a brilliant film and very much like THE MIST. It is a character drama that has monsters in it, also like THE HOST.

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  4. I got this up next to watch. 9/10 certainly helps get me psyched.

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  5. Looking forward to seeing what you think JV!

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  6. yeah, Monsters is just awesome! The effects and the amazing atmosphere blew me away

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