Sunday, March 13, 2011

I watched this on purpose

The Monitors is now on instant view at Netwflix.

I guess I was twenty minutes into this movie when I started to think about how to produce it on stage. It would have saved us from a lot of the annoying montages and flashbacks.

Harry is a pilot, who's had multiple confirmed kills during his career. He's hired to fly Barbara around for some film she's working on, but she's a douche about it and gets him fired. Peter Boyle gives Harry his last paycheck.

Harry lives at home with his annoying brother Max, who wants to be a comedian, and their mom, who watches TV. She watched Alan Arkin give a speech about how the Monitors are very clean and how sanitation workers are treated better.

The Monitors are very nice guys in black turtle-necks and bowler hats who are in charge of everything. Barbara works for them on the side and is trying to recruit Harry.

A street-preacher starts a riot and the Monitors break it up with sleepy-spray, knocking out Max. Harry and Barbara drag Max off, but Harry hits a Monitor with sleepy-spray, so he's a wanted man now. The street-preacher is actually part of an underground movement to overthrow the Monitors and kidnaps everyone (at gun-point) into his incredibly large car, while quoting Thomas Jefferson. They drive a car off the road and Harry jumps out to save the occupants (Monitors) and is captured.

Harry is put in an education camp, where he meets Mona, who shows him how to escape. Barbara is threatened by Mona and takes Harry to bed. He finds out she's working for the Monitors and gets pissed off. Barbara, Mona, Max, and Harry steal a helicopter and go see the president, who is lame.

The general of the anti-Monitor organization is tied up by a colonel and they steal a bomb. Harry activates the bomb and flies it to the Monitor headquarters with Barbara in tow.

The Monitors explain how everyone sucks and how they will die, but not kill. The bomb is a dud. The Monitors leave, the president is placed back in power, and there's a war. The end.

I have to say, you don't get the sense that the Monitors are aliens until the last few minutes. They're just guys who took over and are nice to everyone. The most jarring thing about the movie are the radio-jingles that talk about how great the Monitors are. When they leave, it's very sudden.

This is a preachy film with a lot of very good people in minor roles and very minor people in big roles. There are flashbacks that have no business being there. The pacing is weird. The music gets annoying.

I would say "watch it" only to say you have. You can fast-forward large parts, but I'd love to see it re-edited into a shorter and more effective film.

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