Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monsters vs. Aliens

This movie proves to be another feather in the cap of the DreamWorks Animation division, who have been doing what they do best since 2001; terrorizing people. The only things that terrify me worse than monsters are aliens. This movie contains an equal helping of both.

Within minutes of starting we are taken to a dark room. The sound of a creaking floor and wheezing can be heard. A young woman lies in bed. With the seconds of anticipation you can only assume that she is about to be abducted. Instead the light comes on and it is her friends. You can expect this sort of torturous delayed gratification for the film’s entirety. The question then becomes does this movie deliver? I would have to say yes. I was terrified from beginning to end. The main character in this movie, Susan suffers a tragic accident which makes her gigantic. Due to her radioactive nature she is sedated, bound and kidnapped. During her capture one of the officers is nearly impaled. Upon waking Susan is in a windowless steel enforced room. Without a word she is transported to a larger windowless room where she is all but forced into a combative situation with the prisons other occupants.

The horror and torture references are delivered with continue regularity throughout. The alien invasion begins in classic horror fashion with the teenage couple alone in the woods. The radio goes ballistic, a bright light and a crash in the distance. I can’t help but shout—quietly as I am in the movie theater—for them not to go out there, but of course they go and we get the always infamous cut to black as they huddle together screaming. As with any good kidnap/hostage horror the victims or as this film so affectionately calls them prisoners are presented with a way out, given that they perform a series of tasks. In this case the task is combat.

There are scheduled bursts of comic relief, which is sorely needed after some of the more frightening scenes. For a moment they help us forget that we are watching a horror and provide us with a chance to breathe before beginning the torment anew. There is a brief “name that tune” comedy moment that older viewers or younger old movie viewers will enjoy. There is even a tiny inkling of a moral lesson to be learned. Something about loving people despite deformity genetic or otherwise, I’m not really sure as by this point in the movie I was crouching beneath my chair.

All in all I would say this movie is definitely worth a watch. Not for fainting or the faint of heart.

Review Soundtrack:
Sam the Sham and The Pharaohs - "Wooly Bully"
Harold Faltermeyer - "Axel F"
Aqua - "Roses are Red"

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  1. I thought the moral was "Be as big as possible, even if you have to take steroids."

  2. I never thought about that, but roid rage would definitely explain the emotional outbursts and her tendencies toward violence.