After 7 years in the bunker, the clumsy boy told himself that he would go out and go through a world full of monsters.
Post-apocalyptic movies are often dark, bleak, and serious. The ruined world scenario logically leads to this approach. But anyone who has seen Ruben Fleisher’s Zombieland knows it can be done differently. Michael Matthews tried something similar with the film Love and Monsters, which is only his second feature film.
Despite the almost primitive plot noted in the trailers, a rather nice work eventually emerged from the film, earning it critical acclaim and an Oscar nomination (for visual effects).
We also talked about the Love and Monsters movie in the last part of the SHARE_talks podcast:
Seven years later
Love and Monsters devotes only an absolute minimum to what really happened to the world. An asteroid was about to collide with Earth, so humanity tried to destroy it with nuclear weapons. Yet somehow, this counterattack led to wild genetic mutations in insects and various cold-blooded animals, turning into huge, deadly monsters in the strangest of ways.
The story takes place seven years after this event. The monsters have gradually killed most of humanity and the survivors are defending themselves in various bunkers and fortifications called colonies. One of them also includes the main character Joel Dawson, played by Dylan O’Brien (Thomas from The Maze Runner).
Joel survived for so long by accident rather than by his abilities. He was taken in by one of the groups hiding in an underground bunker. He can’t fight, he doesn’t know survival principles, and when he sees a monster, he usually freezes in fear. He has lived like this for seven years, until at some point he says that it is no longer possible and that he has to do something with himself. When he discovers that his old love Aimee (Jessica Henwick) lives in one of the neighboring colonies, he chases her down.
The film follows his journey through a land infested with monsters, during which he gradually learns how to survive in the new world. The couple they meet along the way has a lot to do with it. An eight-year-old Minnow (Ariana Greenblatt, v Avengers: Infinity War played by young Gamora) and seasoned traveler Clyde (Michael Rooker, Yondu from the Galaxy Rangers or Daryl’s brother Merle from The Walking Dead) will teach you many useful tricks.
Joela and Aimee shared the apocalypse. Seven years later, they happened to live in nearby colonies.
A difficult journey to the audience
The distribution of the film Love over Monsters was originally in charge of the production company Paramount Pictures. The premiere of the cinema was postponed several times until a pandemic occurred and the corresponding closure of cinemas around the world. Therefore, it was finally decided that the film will be screened in October 2020 by a few select theaters in the US and further distribution will take place online. In the United States, Paramount licenses movies for Internet video rentals and has been available on Netflix since April 14, 2021.
Better than it looks
Honestly, at first glance and even after looking for the trailer, the movie doesn’t seem very interesting. When we add the tactics of Netflix, which is known for often buying not just the best movies, just to have as many titles in the catalog as possible, the low expectations are quite natural.
Joel gradually learns to survive on the surface.
What was even more surprising was that the film still managed to strike a balance somewhere on the delicate line between too absurd a story that could easily be embarrassed and too cautious, which in turn would result in boredom.
The history of Love and Monsters is completely absurd and unreal. The monsters look comical, and if we accept the strange scenario and don’t solve their reality, the monsters would have to kill Joel at least 100 times in the movie.
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However, the filmmakers apparently didn’t bother with this. The only thing that Love and Monsters is entertaining the viewer. And works. Love and Monsters is fun, but its qualities don’t end there either. A well-written setting contains plot twists that are predictable but well-planned.
The overall good impression is complemented by the characters you will fall in love with. Dylan O’Brien showcased his qualities in The Maze Runner, and after a great run with Clyde and Minnow, you’ll Google to see if the creators have accidentally announced a sequel. (Not yet, but it is talked about).
Love and Monsters is not a blockbuster of the year. If you don’t look at it, you won’t lose anything fundamental, but at the same time you have far exceeded low expectations. It’s a cute post-apocalyptic sci-fi comedy that can also be watched with the family (Netflix recommends the age limit of 13+).
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