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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Movie Review: Monsters: The Dark Contintent

What do you do when everything has gone wrong, but there's still a job to do? In April 2015, Frater's mission has gone bad in every way possible, and that's not even counting the issues with the aliens.

Directing this 119 minute drama/sci-fi/thriller is Tom Green.

Some of the cast is: Johnny Harris as Noah Frater, Joe Dempsie as Frankie, Sam Keeley as Michael, Nicholas Pinnock as Forrest, Michaela Coel as Kelly, Jesse Nagy as Conway and Parker Sawyers as Shaun Williams.

After an extraterrestrial life form spread out through the area of the United States and Mexico border, a quarantine for the infected zone was set up and military from both sides tried to keep the creatures
from leaving the quarantine zone. Ten years later, the infected zone quarantine has failed and the infection has spread world wide. In the Middle East the creatures numbers have grown, so the military has taken a more offensive position. Unfortunately, this action has upset people and a insurgency group has popped up to take action against the U.S. military. With the insurgency numbers growing and trying to deal with the creature infestation, the Army put together a group to focus on the insurgence.

This is a sequel to the film Monsters (2010). I wasn't really a fan of the first one, but I had hopes for the sequel. Well, that was just silly of me I guess...

Writers, Tom Green and Jay Basu, pinned a sequel that fit the format the first film used. Super huge (semi-non-threatening) alien creatures are all over the place... and we focus on how the humans "feel" about life.

The playthrough makes for a good war film. Unfortunately, not so much for an alien sci-fi flick. If you've seen the first film then expect the same kind of playthrough. Lots of human focus with almost nothing to really do with aliens, except for their use as part of the backdrops. Maybe I'm just not a deep enough thinker and I just can't swim to the depths this movie is passionately trying to explore. Maybe, when I think of alien invasion I'm not so worried if my co-workers like me. I'm more of the "Holy crap, please don't let it step on me!" kind of guy.
                                                                           

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for wanting to see the personal struggle people have during times of an invasion. "I should've called mom more often," "I can't believe the last talk I had with my brother was a an argument..." cliche... cliche. but rarely does the film cover that. I understand, with it being ten years later, obviously the aliens are not a dire threat. If they were going to take over the world... they probably would have by now, which is why they're semi-non-threatening. Think Godzilla walking through the city. He isn't intentionally trying to take out the mall, but when you're wearing zilla size shoes, you can't always watch where you step. I just would have liked to have seen more alien based concern in the film, and less "Is this really the nature of man?"  Yes, humans bad, we all know this by now, but when facing zilla size creatures I'd like to think our focus would be on handling the invasion, not spotlighting humanity's flaws. But, what do I know.

The special effects that David Harris did looked really good. Sergi Arbones (of Minimo Vfx)pulled off some killer looking visual effects and built some really cool looking CGI creatures. Too cool for this film in my opinion, seriously.

Now, the cast did a good job, but I have to say Johnny Harris was the best thing this film had going for it. Harris's character has to carry a lot of weight in the film. That's due to the missions, personal life and taking care of his team. Harris does a great job at showing the stress and strain his character goes through as the movie unfolds.

Overall, I'm all for making a film to express your feelings about human nature or the harshness of war. Just do me a favor, don't make such crazy cool looking creatures... and then do nothing with them. Other than that, the film was ok and if you're a fan of the first one, then you'll like this one to. However, as a sci-fi flick, I wouldn't recommend burning time on this one.

It's rated R for language, violence and nudity.

3 stars


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