Six years ago NASA discovered the possibility of alien life within our solar system. A probe was launched to collect samples, but crashed upon re-entry over Central America.
Soon after, new life forms began to appear there and half of Mexico was quarantined as an INFECTED ZONE. Today, the American and Mexican military still struggle to contain “the creatures”…
The film opens with a US photojournalist named Andrew Kaulder (Scoot McNairy) agreeing to escort a shaken American tourist named Samantha Wynden (Whitney Able), who also happens to be the daughter of Kaulder’s boss, through the infected zone in Mexico to the safety of the US border.
Monsters is not exactly as it seems. If you’re expecting an all-out monster or alien invasion film, you may be disappointed. This movie is more of a love story set against a backdrop of an alien/monster invasion. But that’s not to suggest that it’s bad or boring. It’s neither. The viewer is taken on a harrowing trek through an unwelcoming Mexican jungle, while the stars are forced to deal with conniving locals, alien invaders, and their own personal hardships.
You will notice some similarities between this film and District 9 as well as Cloverfield. It does contain a message, that of acceptance, which it shares with District 9, but it is not a copy of that film. The alien invasion backdrop in Monsters is a metaphor for the ongoing illegal immigration “war between Mexico and the US.
Monsters is a unique take on the alien invasion genre and does offer up some new ideas about how an invading alien force may spread. I won’t go into details as you’ll see what I’m referring to when you see the movie. The aliens’ appearance will surely please fans of “Lovecraftian” imagery.
The movie’s budget was nearly non-existent; only $15,000 was spent to make this film, yet it does not suffer from that. The small budget was not a hindrance at all. As a matter of fact, not being able to go all-out with spectacular special FX, writer/director Gareth Edwards chose to make this film more of a character study, rather than a huge budget action film, which is what separates this film from others of its kind.
Both of the film’s stars, Whitney Able and Scoot McNairy, are fantastic and do a great job at making the viewer care about them, worry about their wellbeing, and root them on, praying that they make it back to the US safely.
It’s not a perfect film, and it should not have been marketed as a giant monster or alien invasion horror film, but it is a very well written, and well acted, dramatic love story.
You can see Monsters before it’s in theaters for $9.99/$10.00 with Video On Demand (check your local cable listings), on Amazon.com or iTunes.
Monsters opens in theaters October 29, 2010. The film is rated rated R for language.