monsters vs. aliens

Monsters vs. Aliens
Margaret Tang
Cast: Will Arnett, Seth Rogen, Rainn Wilson, Reese Witherspoon

Ricardo Barberini

March 31, 2009


The tale of Monsters vs. Aliens is familiar to anyone who has seen sci-fi movies.  A world in a distant galaxy is blown up by a super villain named Gallaxhar because he wants to extract a very powerful material called Quantonium from the planet. However, the big chunk of material containing Quantonium hurtles into space as a meteorite and eventually lands on earth only to fall next to an airhead girl (Susan Murphy) on her wedding day.   Quantonium turns Susan into a giant woman (Ginormica) who is immediately captured by government forces and imprisoned in a secret government facility.  There she meets General W.R Monger who runs an X-file type secret operation.  She also meets other monsters; a half cockroach half human scientist (Dr. Cockroach), a blob made of tomatoes and jelly (B.O.B), a prehistoric fish (The Missing Link) and a giant insect.

She is destined to live there for eternity but Gallaxhar, the creature responsible for blowing up the other world is following the Quantonium to earth and sends a robot to extract the material from Susan’s body.  The government releases Susan and the other monsters to battle the robot which is destroying San Francisco.  The good monsters eventually destroy the robot.

An incensed Gallaxhar decides to come to earth with his super spaceship and destroy the Earth and extract the precious Quantonium from Susan, but Susan and her monster friends put up a heroic defense and eventually destroy Gallaxhar’s starship. But, don’t be surprised if he comes back since these monsters have a habit of reappearing if the box office numbers are right.

The 3D technology has improved tremendously during the past few years.  It is now possible to go to a local cinema and enjoy three dimensional movies similar to what Disney has had in their amusement parks.    

The 3D concept goes back over 50 years, but it was never very practical.  It lacked depth and the cinema going public soon lost interest in the technology.  In addition, 20th Century Fox Studios bought the franchise for a wide screen movie making technology known as Cinemascope and with clever marketing made it the default standard for the making movies in the sixties and beyond.  Despite many attempts by many movie studios, it was never truly possible to project a 3D image with just one camera.  The closest that we came to true three dimensional was the Cinerama invention of Michael Todd, one of Elizabeth Taylor’s many husbands, which required 3 separate cameras and therefore projectors to shoot and show a movie.  The synchronization problems between the cameras, while shooting and the three required projectors proved a major headache and that technology was soon abandoned after the untimely death of Michael Todd.

In addition to very nice and yet subtle special effects and sound, the story itself is nicely scripted and animated.  The voices of actors such as Reese Witherspoon, Kiefer Sutherland and Hugh Laurie added value to the effectiveness of the plot.   All in all, the end result was almost like watching a non-animated feature film.  In fact, after a while you will forget that those characters are not real.

We would highly recommend this movie to everyone in the family, young and old.  There are really no scary scenes to give the kids nightmare and the story is mature enough that will keep the grown ups awake and entertained.


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