Monsters vs. Aliens is out of this world. I miss the days when DreamWorks Animation made more satirical projects centered around subjects that most children wouldn’t understand. I wasn’t like most children at 13 years old. I’ve always been a huge fan of monster attack B movies or alien invasion pictures of the 1950’s. Monsters vs. Aliens sounded like a lot of fun the moment it was announced. It was originally meant to be an adaptation of a comic called Rex Havoc before being turned into more of a classic monster movie homage. I was still very familiar with each monster type despite not seeing everything that was being parodied at the time. It may have been 2009 and/or a reference to drive-in cinema, but the 3D is still pretty obnoxious. Monsters vs. Aliens is the first DreamWorks movie to make a considerable leap with its computer animation. Resulting in realistically textured humans with unattractive appearances. Except for Susan, she’s probably the hottest DreamWorks woman in my opinion. Reese Witherspoon brings plenty of character growth to the lead monster. Susan is hit by a meteor before her wedding to douche bag reporter Derek voiced by Paul Rudd. Her hair turns white and she grows to ginormic size just like Attack of the 50 Foot Woman.
The government takes her to what is essentially Area 51, led by the hardened General W. R. Monger. Kiefer Sutherland makes an impression as the stereotypical southern general. The rest of the monsters make up an enjoyable ensemble with the usual innuendo filled DreamWorks banter. Hugh Laurie’s sophisticated British voice is best suited for Dr. Cockroach Ph.D. A half cockroach mad scientist modeled after The Fly. Seth Rogen brings the laughs in his second DreamWorks role as B.O.B. An indestructible gelatinous mass with a single eyeball and no brain modeled after The Blob. Will Arnett is fun as the macho monster the Missing Link. A 20,000 year old fish man likely modeled after Creature from the Black Lagoon. Susan, Dr. Cockroach, Link, and B.O.B. are the only monsters who can have banter since the fifth monster is bigger than even the 50ft. Susan. The final monster is the building sized Insectosaurus. A giant bug dinosaur either modeled after Godzilla or Mothra. When a UFO lands in America, the President of the United States is sent to negotiate Close Encounters style.
Stephen Colbert voices what is probably the most incompetent President in movie history. All the political commentary is unusual to see in a kids movie, but the war room is the best place for Monger to initiate his monsters vs. aliens idea. The alien probe makes its way to San Francisco where it wrecks the Golden Gate Bridge. The first battle is highly uncoordinated, but it does lead to Susan literally discovering the strength she never knew she had. Although the other monsters fear they’ll never be accepted by society, Susan finds the confidence she needs to dump Derek and own the title of Ginormica. The alien in the title is actually just one extraterrestrial. Rainn Wilson voices the very eccentric big headed tentacle alien Gallaxhar. He plots to extract Susan’s quantonium in order to clone himself and invade the Earth. The final fight in the UFO is a thrilling, occasionally childish battle that saves all mankind and earns each monster their acceptance. Monsters vs. Aliens was a movie begging to have a sequel, but DreamWorks felt the parody approach didn’t pay well enough. So they made a video game, a 3D short called B.O.B.’s Big Break, two clever Halloween specials, and a lackluster one season Nickelodeon TV series. Monsters vs. Aliens is more than enough fun as long as you enjoy the classics.