A Monster Calls is about a boy, who lives with his VERY sick mother, seeking help and guidance from a tree “monster”, voiced by Liam Neeson.
The movie has a really nice structure to its storytelling, with the larger portion of the film being focused on the boy’s struggles in his life, and a smaller part of the film centered on the meetings this boy has with the Monster. In these meetings, the Monster tells the boy stories with messages that may or may not (at the time) be helpful to the boy during this chaotic time in his life. These stories offer a much needed break from the real world, and a nice change of pace for the movie.
The visuals in this movie are impressive for a movie with a smaller budget. The Monster has a really cool design with the branches forming his body. When he gets angry, his eyes and insides light up like a fire. The animations in the stories were a nice contrast from the more dreary setting the kid lives in.
All the actors were great in this movie, even the kid, which doesn’t always happen. Felicity Jones and Toby Kebbell have some great scenes in the small time they actually have on the screen. I had no idea she was in this movie, but Sigourney Weaver does a FANTASTIC job as the grandmother. The story focuses on the boy’s pain, and so it’s through her body language and facial expressions that you can really tell just how much she is going through.
The pacing during the first half of the film is pretty slow, but it’s all building up for the 3rd act. The final 45-60 minutes of the movie is so emotional, I cried the entire time. And not just during the sad moments, but the sweet ones too!
I really wouldn’t recommend this movie for kids, even if there is a “Groot” tree-character in it. The movie is made for adult viewers, and there really isn’t anything in the film that would entertain kids. The themes of the movie are meant for adults, not for kids. Like I said before, it’s an emotional movie. Don’t get turned-off by the slow pace of the beginning of the film, because it does have a beautiful message to tell by its end. There’s also a “twist” at the very end of the movie that some people might miss, and that also brought a tear to my eye.
The movie is a powerful tale, and one that so many people can relate to at some point in their lives. It’s not a movie I would watch repeatedly, because I don’t have enough tissues for it! I’m going to give A Monster Calls a GREAT out of 10.
What do you think of A Monster Calls? Let me know down below!
Thanks for reading!
**My next review will be on Split, but look out for other posts coming out soon!**