Monsters is a seductive film. It will draw you in, tease you and lay a claim to you soul. But it never cheapens it’s self by putting on make up and a short skirt. It’s beauty is in it’s brains as much as it’s good looks and subtle teasing.
It starts off with an action scene and hints at a Cloverfield style story, but Monsters is more restrained than Matt Reeves, showing even less monster and less destruction, preferring to plot a social commentary through it’s alien parable.
Monsters is set in a world a few years after aliens arrived in Northern Mexico, and the American’s typically treated them as hostile and tried to fence them in. It’s in this quarantine zone that we pick up the story, following the plight of a journalist hunting for a career defining photo of the aliens – preferably attacking children – and his bosses daughter who needs to be escorted to the safety of a boat back to the promised land – I mean the safety of America.
It’s a low budget affair, but one that packs quite a punch and proves that big budget and Hollywood talent are far from necessary.
The hapless journalist and his unwanted female companion run into a number of problems and end up having to trek over land through the infected zone to gate back to America. Along the way we see the results of American policy, we discover that yes, these aliens are capable of massive destruction, but we also get to see their fragile beauty.
It’s a compelling watch that will have you on edge from time to time, but will end up farcing you to contemplate what has actually happened by the time to film rolls to a close.
It’s ability to mesmerise you whilst engaging your brain is commendable, but to do so without coming off as a cheap genre rip off makes it exceptional.
It’s not a film for Michael Bay fans, it’s a film for for people who love a good story, presented well.
Reviewed by: Jonathan