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Criticism | Dylan O’Brien shines in fun post-apocalyptic comedy ‘Love and Monsters’

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When we think of the post-apocalyptic cinematic genre, it’s quite common for us to associate such tales either with natural disasters or with demonic creatures that pose a threat to the planet and the last survivors of the human race. However, while this panorama is what normally governs dated and predictable storylines, it is necessary to remember that the stories that follow this pattern are just a cast to explore the limits of human capacity and empathy in the face. to unknown dangers – even serving as a basis. for the analysis Anthropological aspects of the clash between community life and unbridled tyranny.

Of course, over the years the entertainment industry has decided to move away from this allegorical essence, mixing familiar storylines with fun forays, pulling out a bit of tragic comedy – as seen in the ‘Zumbilândia’ franchise. for example, recently arrived. at the end with an unexpected and fun second chapter. Or the up-and-coming “ Daybreak, ” whose coming-of-age aesthetic turned a struggle for survival into an irreverent romantic comedy with a surprising ending (which won’t continue, given Netflix has it). canceled after a strong season). Either way, the ‘comfortable’ action seen in ‘Resident Evil’ (one of the most famous franchises of the genre) or the tour de force drama of works like ‘The Impossible’ already doesn’t seem move us as before – and, well, reinvention is the key word to move away from outdated formulas and surprise viewers already tired of the similitude.

And while Michael Matthews’ name does not get the recognition it deserves, we must be mindful as he decides to return to active service – as he did this year with the incredible greatness of “Amor.” e Monsters ”. Matthews was previously responsible for the award-winning, award-winning western drama “Five Fingers for Marseille”; However, to imagine that the filmmaker would come to commission a profound portrayal of a world plagued by mutant creatures as he constructed an epic journey of maturity and love would be impossible. Ultimately, the feature film in question emerges as one of the best in 2020, an escape denser than it appears and more critical than it appears, moving away from the romantic pedantry of similar works and guided by flawless and enigmatic performances.

Matthews makes great use of clichés, carefully painting them with a classicism that hasn’t been seen in the movie scene for a long time, without letting the obvious shine through. In other words, it is possible to predict every step of the protagonist experienced by Dylan O’Brien, Joel Dawson. Isolating himself with a group of survivors in a bunker for seven years, Joel comes into contact with an old crush, Aimee (Jessica Henwick), and decides to leave his family behind and travel tens of miles to find them. Because? Honestly, the reason doesn’t matter: we buy and accept everything to come – and we know, from the moment he steps out of his haven, his bow will be scrutinized by allies, antagonists, a startling turnaround. and giant monsters ready. to tear you in two.

Sometimes playing the cards we know is the best thing to do – and Matthews is well aware of it. The director borrows a few pages from Joseph Campbell’s bible and turns the unreachable deities and party warriors into monumental beings who see him as a piece of meat and into a hilarious duo formed by Michael Rooker and Ariana Greenblatt as Clyde and Minnow. However, the archetypes of classical works (whether literary or cinematographic) acquire an interesting and very contemporary layer, which does not lose its nostalgic lines by cultivating original and engaging reflections. It’s no surprise that each of the characters carries a funeral story, full of unfortunate losses and a perspective that allowed them to mature ahead of time or differently than they expected. Clyde lost his son; Minnow, your father; Joel, for his part, was the only one who escaped a car crash, helplessly watching his parents being crushed mercilessly.

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It is with these brief explanations that the rom-com imagery gains an evocative flirtation with family tragedies, without losing the hand of the thread that unites each of the acts. And, if the sharp scenario is shown to be one of the best of recent years, whether for its rhythm or for the balance of its dialogues, the aesthetic concern of the artistic team to add subtle and practical elements. the path taken by the main character is remarkable. The vibrant color palette of Joel’s rediscovery of the world becomes an obscure realization that all he knows is still there, but now he’s overwhelmed by danger and inhospitality, resulting in a sober reflection that the best way is to move forward. Even the predictable final confrontation between him and his executioners – and his meeting with Aimée – is accompanied by superb technical organization.

Emerging as an interesting analysis of passion and courage, “Amor e Monstros” revitalizes the post-apocalyptic genre just as its aforementioned compatriots did some time ago. Inviting and mesmerizing from start to finish, it’s impossible to look away from the captivating performances and explosive chemistry of your cast – and not to hope that somehow everything will turn out to be right. the end.

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