Directed by Michael Matthews. Written by Brian Duffield and Matthew Robinson. Starring Dylan O’Brien, Jessica Henwick, Michael Rooker, Ariana Greenblatt and Dan Ewing.
Plot: seven years after the monster apocalypse forced humanity underground, Joel leaves his bunker to find his ex.
The story begins with the end of the world. There was an asteroid headed for Earth, so humans sent a rocket up to destroy it. This did stop the asteroid from hitting Earth, but the chemical fallout ended up turning the cold-blooded creatures on Earth into monsters that ate people. So, humans were forced underground.
Joel (O’Brien) is a young man who lost his parents during all this catastophe. He also lost his girlfriend, Aimee (Henwick), who did not live that close to him and is therefore hiding in another bunker 80 miles away. He’s very scared and not very brave and his fellow bunkmates never let him go on supply runs because he tends to freeze up when faced with something disturbing. He knows Aimee is still alive because they can sometimes communicate over radios. When it seems that everyone is his bumker has a significant other except him, he decides to brave the outside, travel the 80 miles alone, and find Aimee.
The very first day he’s outside, he is attacked and almost killed by a giant frog, but a dog named Boy rescues him. Then, Boy joins him on his adventure. Boy isn’t the only friend he finds on his journey and the frog isn’t the only monster they come across. I’d like to tell you everything, but I won’t because I genuinely want you to watch this and be surprised. I will tell you though, in case you’re at all like me, Boy survives the movie. It’s one of my favorite things about it.
Even without being worried about Boy the whole time, the movie is a very emotional adventure. We both cried. Not ashamed to admit that. The relationships in this movie are so multifaceted. There are layers to everyone and everything. Not all humans are what you’d want them to be and not all the “monsters” are what you’d expect either. There’s so many messages woven throughout, too: family is what you make it, learn to forgive yourself, never settle (even during the apocalypse) and my favorite, of course, sometimes animals have more humanity than actual humans.
It’s an orignal take on the apocalypse. All the good guys were likable. All the bad guys got theirs. It followed rules, was realistic and funny. There was a smart script, cool effects and the best cast. No one let us down. The specials were exceptional, the story was marvelous, the opening sucked you in and the ending actually had us hoping they’d make a sequel. The whole thing was interesting and, in a way, comforting. It was just the kind of thing we love to see. It’s easily one of our favorite movies ever.
Our score: 94.