Monsters vs. Aliens Review

March 28, 2009 at 9:48 pm (Movies)

Just for the record, Dreamworks Animation is now above Disney Animation thanks to their newest animated comedy, Monsters vs. Aliens. I’ll be honest, when I was first heading into this one, like Bolt, I wasn’t expecting anything great, in fact I didn’t expect to like it. However, the movie really blew me away at how interesting and undeniably funny this movie could be. The title itself of Monsters vs. Aliens pretty much explains itself. Over the years, the government has captured monsters as a means of defense, and the recruitment of a new bride-to-be Susan, the gang including Dr. Cockroach, BOB, The Missing Link, Ginormica, and Insect-O-Saurus are out to save the world from the impending invasion from Galaxar, in conquest of the world’s energy sources. If you are a fan of any of the leading comedy players today, you can enjoy this movie. The movie is filled to the brim with current comedy giants. Hugh Laurie, Paul Rudd, Will Arnett, John Krasinski, Stephen Colbert, Keifer Sutherland, Rainn Wilson, Amy Poehler, and of course, Seth Rogen all lend their voices to what has to be one of the best voice casts I’ve ever seen in an animated movie. Like recent animated films, Dreamworks carries their weight with incredible animation and beautiful effects. 

One thing I was incredibly concerned about going into the movie was how or if the movie was going to provide humor to keep me (along with all of the 3 year olds as well) entertained. I have to say, where Bolt kinda faltered in this department, Monsters vs. Aliens slam-dunked it. I really think I laughed more than the children in my screening. Sure, the movie does provide a lot of pie-in-the-face antics that get the kids laughing, some in-between silly antics that make you feel guilty for laughing, and then the jokes I laughed at most, the ones that had me taking off my glasses and bending over laughing so hard I was crying that noone else got. (RIP Invisible Man.) The movie quite literally hits the perfect balance of humor laugh-able for all members of a family. I was literally hooked to the movie I didn’t think I’d like, hooked even more than the 5 year olds this movie is primarily intended for. Whether that’s sad or not you be the judge. The entire 1 1/2 hour circumference of the movie is just brimming with creativity and the fruits of hard work. Every 10 minutes there’ll be some genuinely funny joke, some really ingeniously funny background animation, some incredible attention to detail, just something to let you know these guys worked really hard on this movie, and had a blast doing it. Which in turn, helps you to have fun with it. There were a few flaws present in the movie. The last third of the movie involving Galaxar’s base kinda lost my attention a little bit and wasn’t as creative, plus there were some times when the story got a little slow. Galaxar’s plan as a whole I feel wasn’t fleshed out enough, and could have benefitted from an extra 1/2 hour or so. Sometimes though you just gotta turn your brain off and have fun with a movie. This isn’t Watchmen, this is Monsters vs. Aliens. This is a great movie, probably one of my favorite of the year, that is an animated treat that any fan of animation, parent, or general comedy fan can have a blast with on Friday night. If anything else, it’s just fun to play “Who’s that Voice?” Monsters vs. Aliens thoroughly succeeds at providing a fun experience for kids, teenagers, and adults thanks to thoughtful and creative humor, not to mention a labor of love, and by just being one of those movies I’m gonna love to watch over and over again. 

4 1/2 out of 5

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21 Comments

  1. nolanator said,

    I think I’ll skip this one.

  2. earlman27 said,

    You really really shouldn’t. I can almost guarantee you you’d like it.

  3. The James said,

    I want to see it, but I don’t really like how they keep hiring all these big names to do the voices. That work should belong to the people who only do voices for cartoons.

  4. earlman27 said,

    I disagree. I don’t wanna hear the same guy that does Dexter or Batman in the Brave in the Bold 57 times on the big screen, even though I don’t mind them on the small screen. If I watch a big animated movie, I don’t wanna hear Johny Bravo, I wanna hear frackin’ House!

  5. The James said,

    you can’t tell the diffrence. Voice actors sound diffrent in diffrent roles. Besides, the same could be said of regular actores. It gets annoying seeing the same old faces in every movie, and now hearing those same voices in every cartoon.

  6. earlman27 said,

    Totally disagree. I can 100% tell the difference between hearing Seth Rogen or Jim Carrey in a voice acting position. There are plenty of different actors out there for acting, just like there are for voice acting. There are those that are in a bunch of movies, but this movie hit a great balance with a bunch of stars that had never done that, like Stephen Colbert and Hugh Freakin’ Laurie. I simply don’t wanna hear tv voice actors (unless they’re really good) for movies, I think that’s reserved for the big dogs.

  7. The James said,

    “Totally disagree. I can 100% tell the difference between hearing Seth Rogen or Jim Carrey in a voice acting position.”

    – do you even know what I am talking about. I am talking about the people who ONLY do cartoon voices. People like jeff bennet and tom kenny. They do voices for many diffrent things, but you cannot tell it was the same guy.

    For example, jeff bennet does the voice for jhonny bravo, american dragon jake long, and Dr. Jacques von Hamsterviel, yet none of those characters sound alike. However when a actor like jim carrey does the voice, you know its jim carrey. (you said that yourself)

    These people get paid for doing voices, and only voices. It is not right that the “big dogs” should get to be in movies, and in cartoons.

    Voice actors are their own community seprate from the regular actors. So should the actors be able to take jobs away from the voice actors just because their famous? No, thats not right.

  8. darkcloak said,

    Going with Earl on this one. But quite frankly, i could care less. I loved Hugh Laurie in this movie and I think most animated films should be for bigger actors, but once again, don’t really care.

  9. earlman27 said,

    I personally just don’t think these actors that are on television shows have any place in the bigger movies. To be honest, it’s more fun to hear Seth Rogen than Hamsterviel. They’re just not strong enough to carry feature movies.

  10. henry said,

    Why are these actors paid 7-8 figures for voices that aren’t that good and are not recognizable any how……

  11. earlman27 said,

    I totally agree with you there Henry. To someone who’s not that fluent in movie knowledge or that particular actor, you won’t know it’s them. I personally have too much spare time, and just knew all these guys. I do 100% agree that actors are paid way too much and that the spotlight should be more on the thankless doctor (portrayed ironically by actors) and the economics teacher that spends every waking moment trying to instill a great example.

  12. The James said,

    uh, dude…henny was agreeing with me. Why s Hugh Laurie getting paid so much when he is not that good and hardly recognizable.

    Besides, you are not supposed to recognize the voice, the voice is supposed to feel unuiqe to the character. That is what professional voice actors do.

  13. earlman27 said,

    Well tomato tomato. I personally like hearing hollywood actors giving their own talents to a character, I understand you personally like tv voices. To each his own. I guess we should just agree to disagree. (That’s a first for me).

  14. The James said,

    well with me it is not so much a matter of tastes, I just think it is wrong the way the actors take the jobs of other people.

    Look at it this way:

    Imagine that you spend your whole life learning how to, say, fix televisions. Other people can’t do it, but you can. You get paid $100 for every job and you make a good living on it.

    Now imagine Jim Carrey comes into your town and starts fixing peoples TVs and he charges them $75,000 for it and they pay, because he is Jim Carrey. And pretty soon you can’t find any work because all the celebraties are fixing televisions and getting paid ridiculus amonts for it.

    That is pretty much what is happening with the voice actors. They are getting a lot of jobs taken from them. And for what? I promise that if it had not been so widely publiciced, you probably would not know that it is “famous” people playing those voices. Their preformance is not any greater. They are just a name to slap on a poster to get more people to watch it. It is kinda lame.

    Thats is not to say that a famous actor should not be able to do voices. But they should get the part because they came and auditioned, and they were the best voice for the character. Not because of some famous name. And they should get paid the same amount as a regular voice actor if they do get the role. (of cource, then most celebreties would not take the part)

  15. darkcloak said,

    James it really doesn’t matter

  16. earlman27 said,

    DS is right, it’s not that big of a deal.

    However, I still stand my my opinion that the big list hollywood actors still do a better job than most TV actors. I would not wanna go see a movie, or would srsly considering leaving a theater if there was the same exact voice I’ve heard a bijillion times on the tv. (The voice of Brave and Bold’s Joker comes to mind.) To me it’s not that they’re stealing the jobs, it’s just that I believe TV guys should stay on TV, and Movie guys with movies.

  17. The James said,

    would srsly considering leaving a theater if there was the same exact voice I’ve heard a bijillion times on the tv.

    – how many times have you heard Hugh Laurie’s voice on house? Usually with professional voice actors, you cannot tell who it is. (unless you’re Steven)

    To me it’s not that they’re stealing the jobs but they are. They were movie guys instead of just TV guys until the “big names” took their jobs.

  18. earlman27 said,

    My point is, the reason I go to the movies is to see movie actors. When I pay $10 for a ticket, I wanna see Will Ferrell, Hugh Laurie, Bob Hope, blah blah blah. I don’t wanna pay $10 for somebody I hear everyday on TV. You may wanna hear the guy who does Batman’s voice on the big screen, I personally don’t. Leave these guys to do these jobs, and these guys to do their’s. It’s the way the cycle works.

  19. The James said,

    My point is, the reason I go to the movies is to see movie actors.
    Really? I go to see an interesting story played out in front of me. if you just want to see actors, buy a tabloid or watch E! network. Movies are about stories, not actors.

    I don’t wanna pay $10 for somebody I hear everyday on TV.
    1) you hear Hugh Laurie everyday on TV
    2) $10?! Last time I went to the theaters, tickets were $7.50. Your getting ripped off!

    Leave these guys to do these jobs, and these guys to do their’s. It’s the way the cycle works.
    Thats my point. Leave the voice actors to play voices, and the regular actors to play in live action roles.

  20. earlman27 said,

    I watch movies for the stories too. My point is I don’t want to hear Will Friedle or the guy that does Johny Bravo to be doing voices in feature films, because to be honest they don’t do as well as the big league guys. Another thing, you keep using Hugh Laurie as an example for TV. I didn’t have to mean exactly $10. I spent $8.50 on my ticket to Wolverine, and donated $1.50 to the Children’s fund, that worked out to be $10. Even at $8.50 you can round up. I don’t think it’s fair to rule out big league actors to just live action. I like to see Steve Carrell on the office, who’s to say I can’t see him in an animated movie?

  21. darkcloak said,

    I agree with Earl. Voice actors should stay on tv and such. However I would hate it if movie actors took over acting on tv. Cause tv belongs to the voice actors.

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