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Movie Review

Release Date: 05/13/22 (In Cinemas / VOD)
Genre: Horror/Mystery/Thriller

Studio: Screen Media


"Story centers on a traumatized woman fleeing from her abusive ex-husband with her 7-year-old son. In their new, remote sanctuary they find they have a bigger, more terrifying monster to deal with."


Monstrous attempts to be a love letter to 1950’s monster horror, notably Creature From the Black Lagoon, viewing the 1950’s era through a modern lens and providing more nuance similar to how Buffy the Vampire Slayer uses supernatural creatures as metaphors for emotional growth. Unfortunately, the metaphors get messy, the creature moments are vapid, and overall the story just isn’t interestingly told.


Christina Ricci’s performance, alongside the costuming and set design, help hold the film together and give it a sense of continuity, but everything outside of those three elements greatly vary in quality in any given scene. Sometimes the film relies too much on visual effects despite its limited budget, sometimes the supporting cast seems confused or undirected, and sometimes the 50’s needle drops try too hard to let you know the film is set in the 50’s. The story is also paint-by-numbers with an ending that thematically doesn’t work, so even if you coast to the end there’s unfortunately no reward worth having.

Monstrous is a film that needs to understand the language of the medium better as well as the topics it's portraying.

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