Have a hearty laugh

Giant strides in animation Monsters vs. Aliens

Giant strides in animation Monsters vs. Aliens  

Monsters vs Aliens

Genre: Action /animated

Director: Rob Letterman, Conrad Vernon

Voice Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Laurie, Seth Rogen, Kiefer Sutherland

Storyline: The US government calls upon their secret store of monsters to defeat an evil megalomaniac alien squid

Bottomline: Bright, creative animation, breathtaking set pieces and intelligent, sly humour make this the perfect vacation treat

What would you expect of an animated movie about a giant girl, a crazy scientist with a cockroach head, an indestructible blue blob, a fish-ape and a giant grub taking on an alien megalomaniac? If you expect an irresistible thrill ride, you will not be in the least bit disappointed with Monsters Vs Aliens.

The animation is bright, sassy and incredibly creative, the set pieces are breath-taking and the humour is sly and inventive without being arch or overtly referential, which we all know is intolerably irritating.

What starts as a perfect day for Susan Murphy, the quintessential Californian, turns into a terrible nightmare. Susan is all set to marry Derek, when a meteorite hits her and she turns into a 49 foot, 11 inch giant. The military moves in and Susan is renamed Ginormica and transported into a secret place where all monsters are kept.

When an evil alien squid attacks the earth with an obnoxious plan to clone the world in his image (har har), the monsters are called to help. They save the world in spectacular style. The Golden Gate sequence and the finale are truly bang for your buck and one can only marvel at the giant strides of progress 3D animation has made even in the last few years. From the squid’s many feet tinkering down vast corridors to each strand of Susan’s hair, the animation is eye-popping

As is the norm these days in animation films, the humour is on two levels — the physical jokes and the acute, sly humour and both are equally enjoyable. The scanning one is a personal favourite as is the continuity in the running gag that follows. The goofball president wondering which red button will get him coffee and which will annihilate the world, brings on the giggles big time.

The president reminds us of the varied celluloid avatars of the U.S. commander-in-chief — from the can-do presidents of the Clinton era like Bill Pullman in Independence Day and Harrison Ford in Air Force One to the totally kookie ones from the Bush era. Wonder what the reel incarnation the Obama presidency will create.

So much for that academic digression. Getting back to the movie, the voice cast that includes Reese Witherspoon as Susan, Kiefer Sutherland as gung ho general, Hugh Laurie as Dr Cockroach and Seth Rogen as B.O.B, the blob, are excellent. This is one summer movie that delivers handsomely. Go ahead and treat yourself to some belly laughs.


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