movie: Monsters

December 30, 2010

Monsters is getting good critical reviews and isn’t a bad movie by any standards, but I also didn’t find it had enough to make it very interesting.  The primes is that something is discovered in space, a NASA probe is sent to investigate, it crashes back to earth in Mexico and alien or new-life monsters start wondering around causing havoc.  Now there is a large portion of Mexico/USA blocked off as the “Infected Zone”.  However, all of this happened six years ago and this isn’t a monster movie – they are just part of the background.

This is An American photographer on the Mexican side is asked (or given an ultimatum) that he is to help a Sam, the daughter of the owner of his magazine, get back to the USA.  There is never any explanation of why Sam is there, she seems to have a ‘slightly sprained wrist’ after an encounter with one of the monsters.  Actually there is just an awful lot missing from the movie in terms of plot, motivation and explanation.  For example, to get to safety why didn’t they just go south – away from the danger and then head to the US rather than going through the “Infected Zone”

What is getting this movie noticed is that it has been made on an extremely low budget, mostly by one man – Gareth Edwards, a visual effects specialist who has written and directed this movie (and I think mostly shot it himself on location).  I think (and at the moment I simply can’t be bothered getting references to confirm any of this), that the visual effects were created on consumer level PCs and software.

Those sorts of details of how a film came into being are interesting, but in the end a movie has to stand up on its own merits.  Big budget or low budget can still make trash.  This isn’t trash, it is an interesting movie but for me there just wasn’t enough happening and I found it a little boring.  Last movie of the year, and not one I would recommend.

diving loop

December 30, 2010

This is a mesmerizing little video of people diving, I’ve no idea how this sort of thing is choreographed or how many takes it needed but it does come together into a nice little video: