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monsters vs. aliens (2009)

in music, in drill, in lots of time-baed art, anyone can come up with good Moments. the tough thing is how to make the transitions work in a way that makes those moments flow from one to the next properly.

Monsters vs. Aliens had some great moments to it. the flow of the individual scenes were decent, the dialogue was (mostly) decent. But i couldn't help but feel like it failed when it came to the transitional material. glossing over things here and there, assuming this and that, and ultimately left me feeling moderately entertained but otherwise dissatisfied. it felt like looking at a piece of art that's a jigsaw puzzle with a few of the pieces missing. not any of the key pieces, but enough of the fringes that it detracts from the overall whole.

the other big jigsaw-like issue i had was with susan's character development, part of which is related to the transition issues. as an example, in the beginning of the movie after she goes through her monster orientation, you're supposed to get this sense of loneliness because her life has been completely cut off from her and she's in this new alien existence. there's a hint of that that comes across, but it doesn't get exemplified for long enough - three months go by and even though she's going through experimental whoozits to try to get back to normal, she's already developed a sense of comaraderie with the other monsters that translates to a friendship that undermines the effect of her being alone in her cell. it's possible that this was deliberate because they didn't want to bring that on too strongly with young viewers.

but the bigger character development issue for me was her eventual acceptance of her role as gigantica. most super hero movies are built with the moral of "the real hero is inside you, the super hero is an aspect of who you are". But in this movie, her transition of acceptance to becoming gigantica seemed to imply a shedding of her former personality and life entirely, as if to say "susan's life has no value unless she's gigantica," or "susan's life will be shitty unless she's gigantica."

the end of shrek had a similar kind of flaw to it, but that's a tangent that would make this entry longer than it should be.

it's also unfortunate that the introduction of the movie made reference to fresno, but that's an even bigger tangent.

after watching it, i decided to read the wiki entry to see what people thought of it, and i'm surprised that it got the positive response that it did. then again, maybe i shouldn't be surprised since Gladiator also had high critical acclaim, and boy was that just a shitty movie.

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