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Monsters (Special Edition)

Blu-ray
2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 34.11 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars
2.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Moodywoody TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
There have been a few recent science fiction films that have come out that seem to focus on how the characters react to the appearance of an alien life form on Earth. Particularly, one thinks of District 9. Cloverfield, and Skyline as primary examples of this kind of science fiction film making. Monsters is another science fiction film in this vein. The low budgets and no name actors are compensated by the character development and how these characters relate to these nightmarish scenarios of alien life on Earth. In many ways, Monsters may be the best of this grouping in terms of coherent story telling and human interaction.

The premise of Monsters is probably the most plausible due to its simplicity. NASA exploring for life in the universe brings back a sample that unfortunately crashes in Mexico, and in the nursery of Earth, evolves into creating monster life forms. This leads to humanities effort to contain the creatures in some kind of quarantine region. The story of the film revolves around two people, a man and a woman, trying to get back home to the USA by travelling through this quarantined region, and the experiences they encounter.

The film is largely an interaction between the two actors, competently played by Whitney Able and Scoot McNairy, and their reactions to each other whilst they experience the dangers and wonder of the quarantined region. The story in this film is directed and written so well by Gareth Edwards that one does not pay attention to the low budget or the fact that this film is carried by two unknown actors, though I couldn't help constantly thinking during the film that Scoot McNairy reminded me alot of Chris Martin of Coldplay.

One of the best low budget science fiction films I have ever come across.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Small budget, Big success Feb. 4 2011
Format:Blu-ray
Languid and dreamy, Monsters is not your average alien invasion movie. Director Gareth Edwards, who dreamed up the story and allegedly created all the visual effects on his laptop, says that he wanted to begin where every other monster movie ends. It's a near future, post-invasion world, and it looks incredibly detailed, earthy, and organic. Judging by what's on screen, Monsters appears to be a big budget sci-fi spectacular. It's a remarkable achievement.
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4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Should of been called " Where Are The Monsters?" Feb. 24 2011
Format:DVD
After the opening scene it's all downhill from there.This is NOT a monster movie this is a sappy love story.
If you are going to put a review on the front cover of your DVD is should have something to do with what is actually IN the movie. "Greatest Monster Movie Of The Millennium" Well the reviewer who they quoted obviously doesn't watch to many actual monster movies or got his wallet lined for that review.
In short don't waste your money on this piece of crap.
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4 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Monsters a Dud Feb. 3 2011
By Eddy B
Format:DVD
Monsters
Paid $26.99 + Tax (2-Disc Special Edition) to buy this slow moving Sci-Fi DVD of a developing love tale between a couple who were allow to escape from an alien restricted zone located in the upper part of Mexico below the USA border by a pair of flying octopi. Need I say more!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.1 out of 5 stars  553 reviews
156 of 179 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A worthy Kaiju Film that was never meant to be Cloverfield Or Godzilla Nov. 6 2010
By Robert J. McCaffree - Published on Amazon.com
First, I must mention that I did not see this on Amazon, but in the theatre...and that I thought it looked amazingly vivid and epic on the big screen, despite being shot on video.

Second...what a great movie! I knew going in that it would be more about the journey of its two main characters and less about giant monsters stomping humans into the soil. And yet, as drawn in as I was by the former, there was enough monster action to deliver plenty of good scares to propel the movie and that other thing we go to see Kaiju movies for: wonderment.

The special effects, when deployed, are great. Though the design of the "monsters" is simple (and, to be honest, a little too close to a very familiar earth creature), the more you see of them, the more intricate they look. They also seem towering and immense and believable.

The performances from the two leads are not "act-y" at all and the pace of the film feels very natural, lending to the credibility of what takes place. I like that this film is so different from other giant monster movies...the older ones seem very presentational (and therefore unreal), and the more recent ones seem like video games, so geared are they to the attention span of tweens. This one gives us a plausible scenario...and the set-up feels ominous and yet very realistic. Don't expect to see NewGodzilla trying to swallow Matthew Broderick in a cab, or Cloverfield masticating TJ Miller in Central Park: this movie is as much about the creatures *we* are as it is about the things we fear.
142 of 167 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Monsters. Sept. 24 2010
By Thomas Luth - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
As one who is actually reviewing the film, and not ranting against the rental policy, I give this film four stars. Focusing on the two mains characters of the film, than on elaborate and expensive effects, Gareth Edwards has produced a remarkable tale of two American's trapped beyond the Infected Zone, following an outbreak of extra-terrestrial spores, in Mexico, trying to return to the United States. The limited effects are first rate, and, unlike many Hollywood films, exist to support the storyline, not replace it.
61 of 74 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Organic and Revolutionary April 28 2012
By Tadpole - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Blu-ray
Two actors. One filmmaker. Shot on location. Organic characters - and extras. Organic dialogue. Great camera work. Produced for under 500K. I'd call that revolutionary.

This movie just felt "real" compared to most of the green-screen stuff coming out these days. It played like a great drummer - in the pocket with nothing over-the-top. The "simple" and sublime score was very effective as well.

A solid fiver in my book, and a budgetary milestone in movie-making.
57 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Mix of Predecessors into a New Elixir Nov. 1 2010
By Bryan R. Olson - Published on Amazon.com
I get that people don't like this movie. I myself rented it this previous Halloween weekend, hoping for a good monster movie, despite the costly price tag on my pay-per-view service.

Still, this movie surprised me. I thought it did a better job than most Hollywood fodder at making us care about the protagonists, and while I still expected and hoped for some good monster action once our emotions were stirred, I still wasn't disappointed. It was simply that the message of the film was not one of monster horror per se, and although that was what I was looking for that unfulfilled desire didn't blind me to the value of the film. I think a better question would be, who are the monsters in the film? There are more than just the extraterrestrials.

Within the reviews I have seen comparisons to many films. Prior to reading them I myself found comparisons to District 9 and Cloverfield. The thought of a government cover-up crossed my mind when I mistook the Wall for a research structure located deep within the infected zone while watching the trailer, although I didn't immediately make the comparison to The Mist. I also didn't see a comparison to Apocalypse Now that another reviewer alludes to, but it would be interesting to hear more of what that reviewer saw that I didn't - or I'll just have to watch the two one after the other sometime in the future and come to my own conclusions.

Needless to say, there are many precedents to this film. There is one that stood out to me that I did not see anyone mention, and that is Andrei Tarkovsky's Stalker. Both Stalker and Monsters have a Zone that was created by an extraterrestrial event, both have guides through the zone ("coyotes" in Monsters and "stalkers" in Stalker), both are littered with civilian ruins alongside military machinery that has been conquered by the extraterrestrial presence and overgrown by nature - the most striking visual similarity, and both lead their protagonists to introspective insights as a result of their journey through their respective zones.

Now, I tend to give a filmmaker the benefit of the doubt, especially with independent films, that they are at least attempting to be poetic. (Let Tarkovsky roll in his grave, but if the scene of the building being knocked down to reveal a church in the background from The Steamroller and the Violin wasn't symbolic, especially against the background of communist USSR...) So I asked myself the question, what does the film title allude to? Without going into detail to give too much away, I think a theme subtler than others in the film has to do with what happens when nature - including human nature - is left unfettered by the physical and social constraints placed upon it. One of the guides who lives in the zone in Monsters observes that the creatures act like wild animals, they leave people alone if people leave them alone - but they get pretty angry when the US planes come in and bomb them. There's plenty of idealism to be mined there.

I really liked this film. It's not going to be one of the classics in my collection necessarily, so it probably deserves a four personally, but I'm giving it a five here because I think it rises above the dumbing down the majority of American films have seemed to suffer from lately. Or perhaps I'm being too critical - not all films can be more than just entertainment to stave off the boredom of modern life.

So ignore my own existential BS and see the movie. You might find it worthwhile.
21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Your SyFy Channel Monster Movie! July 4 2011
By Stanley Runk - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Some loved it, and some hated it-Monsters!! I'm somewhere in the middle myself. I can see why folks hated it due to the serious lack of monster action in a film entitled Monsters. I can also see why some enjoyed having a story that took it's time and was essentially about people rather than a nonstop onslaught of monster carnage.
As time goes on, Hollywood continues to shorten our attention spans(especially younger folks who grow up on today's Hollywood films and can't stay focused on anything unless it has the pacing of a television commercial) by piling on the computer effects and taking out the story. Hell, who wants to pay forty bucks for a date, popcorn and soda to go to the theater to watch a story being told through dialogue and/or acting? Absurd!!
Monsters is about a chunk of northern Mexico that has been quarantined off because of an alien species which now roams the region. A newspaper photographer is given the task of transporting the editor's daughter(who's in Mexico) safely across the border into the U.S. Well, the journey isn't as easy as planned as the duo encounter numerous setbacks and end up having to travel through the "Infected Zone", which is a large patch of jungle.
Now, the meat of the movie is the journey of the two protagonists than it is about fighting monsters. I do have respect for that, some of the best horror films have been more about the human element than the monster. Romero's original zombie trilogy is a great example of this. However, my gripe with this movie is that there's really nothing else interesting going on. To be honest, I couldn't give a hoot less about the plight of the two main characters. I didn't dislike them, but they just weren't very strong or interesting. Their travels through the infected jungle aren't interesting either. Aside from one encounter with a creature, there weren't any real perils for them to deal with. Before they reach the jungle, they party and go on a pseudo-date in the city, then go on boat and truck rides. It's kinda like a travelogue of Mexico, and it's not really interesting. I'm not one to whine about lack of monsters, but if this is the alternative, throw the audience a bone here.
The monsters themselves are cool. They're a kind of giant octopus type thing that Lovecraft would be proud of. They are CGI, but shown mostly in the dark and don't look bad at all. No, you do not see them hardly at all, so take this film straight out of your cart or off your queue if you want to see a giant octopus invasion.
All in all, it wasn't too bad, but I do respect it more than I actually like it.
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