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Let's get this out of the way first: I'm not a huge fan of DreamWorks
Animation. Usually consisting of nothing more than unfunny pop culture
gags, I think the majority of their films are mediocre at best, with
the only ones that I really enjoyed being the first Shrek and Kung Fu
Panda. The trailers for Monsters vs. Aliens did get me interested,
though, and the voice cast seemed pretty impressive. Even so, I was
still fairly skeptical about how it would finally turn out. Now, having
seen the film, I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised.
There isn't a whole lot in the way of story and character development, but suffice it to say, it serves its purpose. What makes Monsters vs. Aliens such an enjoyable film is how it works as a comedy. The pop culture references are still present, but I found them to be more clever and funny this time around, and in much smaller amounts. I was smiling through virtually the entire film, and had about 5 or 6 hard laugh-out-loud moments throughout. As expected, I was also very impressed by the voice cast in this movie. Hugh Laurie does a fantastic job as the voice of the sophisticated (though mildly insane) Dr. Cockroach, and most of the laughs are generated by Seth Rogen's performance as B.O.B.. Even Reese Witherspoon helps you feel some sympathy for her character near the beginning of the film, and Stephen Colbert does a surprisingly solid job as President Hathaway.
The 3D, while not used as effectively as it was in Coraline, is still one of the more impressive showcasings that I've seen, and that's largely due to the film's incredible action sequences. Seriously, this is some of the best action that I've seen in an animated film; as far as I'm concerned, it's right up there with that of The Incredibles.
Overall, I found Monsters vs. Aliens to be a surprisingly entertaining film, with clever and witty dialogue, as well as terrific action. I'm not usually in favor of sequels, but if they're able to keep it as balanced and charming, I would honestly like to see this become a successful, long-running franchise. Nice job, folks at DreamWorks Animation.
When I first heard of Monsters vs. Aliens I literally went giddy. A
50's B-movie revival! Stephen Colbert as the President! Hugh Laurie as
a cockroach! I mean, it's called Monsters vs. Aliens!!!
What I got was a mildly good movie. I mean, there were some nice gags in the Strangelove- lite War Room, and some great lines from BOB, but it really left me wanting more. As a whole, the film never got to the comical heights of Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, or even Shrek 2. There are times in the movie where you know that they are going completely random to try and get some laughs, but fail pretty badly.
Besides comedy, the story itself is pretty predictable. From the moment you meet the monsters you know what the moral of the story, and you know pretty much how the whole film will play out.
But it is not a bad film. Not at all. It's good, but not great. What IS great is the 3D. Me, I've never really warmed to 3D, but they use it here in a completely different sense. Monster's vs Alien's 3D is not about shouting "OMG I CAN TOUCH HIS BEARD!!", but more about perspective. And hair. I'm sorry but it's worth seeing just for Ginormica's (Susan's) hair alone.
So basically, it's fun - but not as fun as it should have been. And take it from me: even if you're cynical about 3D; see it in 3D. It's worth the ticket price alone.
This was a pleasant surprise: a nice, feel-good film that is pretty
innocent and sports the usual beautiful Dreamworks art. The artwork and
colors are magnificent. I say "surprise" because it did not get great
reviews. Thus, I wasn't expecting the quality film I got.
The good guys - the "monsters" are typically-likable as you see in other animated films of today. They are pretty funny, too, diverse "monsters" like "Dr. Cockroach, B.O.B and The Missing Link. They, along with "Ginormica," who does her impression of the 1950s sci-fi character, "The F-Foot Woman," are appealing and fun to watch.
I'm tempted to describe this movie as "innocent," because it's such a nice story that doesn't have all the innuendos some other animated films have, yet still will make most adults laugh in many spots because there is some good humor that kids wouldn't get. "Monsters Versus Aliens" shows one doesn't need "edginess" in every movie to have adults enjoy the kids' film, too.
Chances are you'll find this movie a lot better than you thought. Give it a shot.
The President of the United States (Stephen Colbert): "Boys, set the
terror level at code brown, 'cause I need to change my pants."
Monsters vs. Aliens is my first 3-D movienot really, but it is the first time I have felt the process worked within a film as an integral part of the artistic process. It supports the science fiction, titillates at times, but most of all gives the illusion of reality. DreamWorks can be proud of this addition to the pantheon of excellent contemporary animations (dominated by Pixar) that use its Shrek as a touchstone for memorable characters wedded to mature themes and superior techniques.
Monsters vs. Aliens is also a family film in the truest sense: Elders to tots can enjoy the visual delights of 3-D outer space and observe a young bride-to-be Susan Murphy (voice of Reese Witherspoon) grow by a radiation accident into the heroic role of Ginormica, a woman literally too big for her britches. She must assert her independence from a self-centered fiancé and convince family, friends, and the world that an out-sized woman (read overachieving feminist) has a place in the male world, a superior place at that.
A strength of this sweet film is its use of ironic, sometimes sardonic, language to satirize just about everyone, from the president (see the opening quotation, not great humor but entertaining) to the makers of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, whose feel good '70's glow is ripe for 21st-century cynicism, to memories of such chestnuts as The Blob and The Creature from the Black Lagoon.
The hip,loving mood of the film is exemplified by the alien's proclamation at invasion time, "Humans of Earth, my quest has led me to your planet. Give it to me now! You should, in no way, take any of this personally. It's just business."
Okay, I'll admit I'm not big on CG movies as I always find 2D animation much more convincing and involving but I had a good time with this (along with a some relatives) and it's a pretty cool movie. However, I kinda felt a little underwhelmed; the story is good, but there's just wasn't enough substance along with the characters and action. I just felt it needed more. But it's a treat to see all the nods to '50s classic era of films that Monsters Vs Aliens pays homage to along with some good messages about being true to yourself and looking beyond one's appearance in order to know someone. Seeing the film with 3D glasses was a cool idea but in my view, 2D will suffice but still, it's good family entertainment for an afternoon. Hopefully the next film will have more ooomph, more "Monstrosity".
If you're going to see this movie, make sure it's the 3D version - not
all showings are in 3D. If you have the opportunity to see it in IMAX -
it's definitely a 'bigger' treat ... but FWIW, know this: it was
"converted" to IMAX from normal print - not created in the IMAX format.
OK - that said, the movie IS worth seeing. I'd say it was somewhere between "really good" and great. It's a fun story with fast pacing, entertaining characters and nice 3D effects.
It's basically about a group of 5 likable "monsters" that are pitted up against an alien attack. The main character is a new "monster" - Ginormica. She's a young lady that was recently hit by a meteorite with a special composition ... one that made her grow to gigantic size.
It's a fun story told in an imaginative way. The visuals are very nicely done - the backgrounds, characters and scope of detail are great. The movie also moves along at brisk pace - something that grabs your attention is always happening (this makes it work well for kids in the audience). Add to that the fun and oddball personalities of the monster characters and you have a winning combination.
The 3D effects were good, although like most other mainstream animated movies - they start out strong and then get recessed into background. Still - make sure you see it in 3D! You'll be missing part of the key experience offered by the movie if you don't.
All in all, this is a fun movie for adults as well as kids. It's kind of a summer movie that you get to watch in the spring. Grab some popcorn and check out this flick!
Monster versus Aliens is a sometimes funny and sometimes interesting,
but mostly the story is dull and the plot is nearly a non-entity.
However, this movie does take 3D to a new level at times. There's really only one obvious 3D "gag" very early in the movie, but other than that, you are just in awe of seeing these animated characters truly come to life like never before.
The character that steals the show is of course BOB (voiced by Seth Rogen) He is incredibly dumb but also fantastically funny and the most interesting of all the monsters.
The main character Susan (Reese Witherspoon) has this whole back story, but really we never care about it. Much of her story is just recycled from 100 movies that have come before and very predictable.
Still, the action and the 3D are top notch and this is a movie definitely worth seeing if you can see it in the 3D form. In 2D, I only give it a very lukewarm recommendation.
I honestly don't know what some of these people who've reviewed this
film were expecting.
Sure, it's called "Monsters Vs. Aliens." No, that DOES NOT mean that it HAS to be about five thousand monsters fighting five thousand aliens. You people watch too much Predator vs. Aliens.
What this was was a story about one girl, what happens to her and the challenges she faces.
And it's funny. Very funny, in an adult, dry and quirky way. It's not trying to be generic, which seems to be what some reviewers want. It's not trying to be a spectacle, like other reviewers expected it to be.
It's a well told comedy about this girl Susan.
My three year old has seen this movie somewhere in the range of 40 times. I've had to sit through it at least half of that and, quite honestly, it doesn't grow old for me like A Bug's Life or something in that vein might.
Too many people with too specific expectations - and no concept of what's good. Must be why Transformers made so much money.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Watched it, didn't enjoy it. To me it looked like a waste of time.
1) Have a few good jokes in the movie.
2) Relatively high quality CG.
1) Predictable plot. It many places it is obvious what will happen in say, next 15..30 minutes, and it is possible to correctly guess key events at the end of the movie.
2) There are less than 5 good jokes in the movie.
3) Nearly no character development - only main character change a little, others remain unchanged.
4) Unrealistic character development and behavior. Not really logical story. Weak plot.
5) In some scenes it almost look like creators were running either out of time or out of budget - while some scenes are interesting, and filled with many objects and different characters, most of the other scenes use pretty bland sets that doesn't look "alive" (In my opinion) enough. In fact with exception of one or two scenes nearly every set looks more like decoration, than a something even remotely realistic.
6) Absolutely horrible design of giant butterfly at the end.
Bottom line: Someone obviously had too much cash to spent. This movie could be much better. There are maybe 2 or 3 good jokes that could make me smile a bit, but story weak and predictable, and the movie doesn't offer enough in graphic department to watch it only because of graphics or CG.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Monsters and Aliens was a poor clichéd animated outing from Dreamworks.
I found some of the pop culture and repetition in an attempt to get
cheap laughs were embarrassingly bad. In particular the part where the
President tries to make peace with the alien invaders by playing the
Beverley Hills Cop theme on an electric piano made me cringe. Another
scene where the general was showing images of the monsters to the
cabinet with the secretary hysterically screaming on a number of
occasions, leading to the president screaming also left me cold.
The characters were charming, yet I did not feel that the bond between the female lead and the alien characters were all that strong for her to want to stay as the heroine Ginormica - and yes, what an original nickname, eh? Whilst Pixar and Disney are still coming out with great original flicks such as Wall-E and Bolt, Dreamworks are really hitting a downer with unoriginal narratives, and they need to find a new formula to get their franchise going again. Shrek 3 was also unimpressive. Maybe they should get out of their monsters theme and find some new kind of characters to play on.
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