Wednesday, 15 April 2009

REVIEW: Monsters Vs. Aliens

After an intense Oscar-film binge at the start of this year, followed by the dystopian, sci-fi, film noir epic Watchmen, I decided it was time for something completely different…

Monsters Vs Aliens! In frickin’ 3-D!

That’s right. Out with the true stories, the melodrama, the hand-held cameras and Sean Penn. This film has monsters. And aliens. Fighting each other. In 3-D. Hell yeah!

Excitement aside, this film was everything I expected it to be. Dreamworks, as always, will never be able to touch Pixar when it comes to CGI animated films. But Dreamworks offerings are colourful, silly and fun. And they are getting better.

The plot is ridiculously simple: aliens invade and the governments only hope lie in a misfit bunch of monsters, each one referencing a different B-movie classic. We have parodies of The Blob, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Fly, The Attack of the Fifty-Foot Woman and Mothra. All are brilliant, introducing a new generation to the mighty monsters of the 50s, and each is voiced fittingly by Seth Rogen, Will Arnett, Hugh Laurie (on top Blackadder King George form) and Reese Witherspoon.

The jokes are hit-and-miss (as you would expect from a kids film) but the real thrill is seeing these guys battle aliens and destroy stuff in 3-D. With so many 3-D films coming out this year and James Cameron’s epic space opera Avatar due out in December, which will change the world, we might as well get used to wearing those Real-D glasses now. At least they’re cooler than the old red-and-green specs.

So, Monsters Vs. Aliens: harmless, bright and energetic entertainment. But mostly, it is the perfect dose of silliness after a long Oscar season.

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