A young girl named Lizzy is fatigued and done living with her alcoholic mother. On their drive to Lizzie’s father’s house, they crash their car and are attacked by a large creature.
The Monster is a 2016 American horror film written and directed by Bryan Bertino. It stars Zoe Kazan and Ella Ballentine. The Monster is a great film for any modern monster enthusiast yet looking for a story with deep pro-found story and characters.
The monster in this film is a strange hairless black creature. Kind of like a bear mixed with a xenomorph. But this thing is pissed off and wants to slaughter everything in it’s path.
As much as it is a scary film, the movie is also a deep and tragic story of a torn relationship between Kathy and her daughter. Throughout the film there are flashbacks to certain events between Kathy and Lizzy. Each clip demonstrating the burden Kathy’s drinking has had on their relationship. These scenes range from Kathy abusing Lizzy to Lizzy coming close to killing her mother in her sleep.
I think the parallels of Kathy’s inner demons and the creature itself are very obvious. Kathy fails to stop drinking, drowning her deeper in being a terrible mother. Yet this monster is her inner demon and she must do everything as a parent to defeat it. Through whatever love she has; she places all addictions aside to sacrifice herself for the only thing that is good in her life (Lizzy). It’s a sad yet brutally honest metaphor that I think many parents can identify with. Not necessarily drinking, but with the things we know are stifling our abilities to be effective compassionate fathers or mothers. The monsters deep within us need to be defeated at all costs. Sometimes that payment is our blood. This may be something as big as substance addiction to something like watching football on Sunday. This movie beautifully demonstrates this through the mother and daughter relationship.
It’s not until the selfless devoted sacrifice that Kathy makes to Lizzy, that Lizzy herself can feel no fear and fight the monster herself. Possibly finding courage from the mother she often times hated. And in this moment of redemption for Kathy, her daughter escapes victorious and a love rekindled.
There’s nothing better than a good monster film and The Monster is as good as it gets when it comes to modern horror. It’s a movie with great tone and atmosphere. The constant falling of rain creates a soft dissonance throughout. Moments of sheer terror are afterwords dampened by the soft ongoing shower. This movie delivers in horror. With many parts of the film that are truly terrifying and aggressively bold. Backed up by an amazing performance by Zoe Kazan and Ella Ballentine. This movie is one those films you show your friends to get their emotions running. Truly a well crafted horror film and one everyone should check out.