We Found It On Streaming: LITTLE MONSTERS (2019)

Image via Neon

You know the film. It’s a film you have never heard of. The cast might be composed of actors you know and love or complete unknowns. You stumble across it on streaming and wonder if it will be worth two hours of you time. This series will be devoted to reviewing films like these, the strange items that pop up when you are looking for a flick on the streaming service of your choice. This is “We Found It On Streaming”

Images via Neon

FILM: Little Monsters

Release Date: October 8, 2019

Run Time: 93 Minutes.

Streaming Service(s): Hulu

Rating: R for bloody zombie violence, crude sexual content, language throughout and brief drug use.

Australian slacker Dave (Alexander England) is having a bad run of it. He has just broken up with his girlfriend, was kicked out of the apartment they shared and forced to move in with his sister, Tess (Kat Stewart) and her son, Felix (Diesel La Torraca).

But things are beginning to look up. Felix’s kindergarten teacher, American ex-pat Audrey Caroline (Lupita Nyong’o) has caught his eye. So much so that when a chaperone for Felix’s class trip to a local farm falls through, Dave jumps at the opening so he can spend more time with Audrey.

However, there are complications to Dave’ pitching of the woo. You know, the usual things: the diamond ring on her finger, an unctuous kid’s show host named Teddy McGiggle (Josh Gad) who also happens to be at the farm and also has taken a liking to Audrey, and, finally, a full-scale zombie apocalypse that breaks out on the trip.

Image via Neon

Yes, next door to the farm is a U. S. Army base where they are doing experiments on reviving dead soldiers. Well, one of the experiments gets out, and soon there are dozens of zombies all around the farm. Now Dave the colossal screw-up must work with Audrey to keep his nephew and his classmates safe while the world goes to Hell all around them.

If you’re a regular reader of the site, you probably already know that the zombie film is my favorite subgenre of horror film. You probably guessed because this the second zombie film I have focused on in the feature (sue me, it’s October, and I need to review scary movies). They have a simple concept–people having to stay alive when monsters are trying to eat them, but one with a framework that you can add to in order to make it different and exciting. You can screw up a zombie movie, but it is hard to do in my eyes.

Little Monsters adds a new take the genre of the Zom Rom Com. Following in the footsteps of Shaun of the Dead and Warm Bodies, two very good examples of this sub-subgenre, it is film that is equal parts vulgar, scary, funny and charming. Yes, I said charming.

If you saw the film’s trailer, you would think the film centered around Nyong’o’s character, portraying her as badass teacher killing zombies to keep her kids safe. But this is really Dave’s story. England plays him with a Chris Hemsworth-like charm, which helps make the early parts of the film where he is a self-centered numbskull manchild easier to bear. It also makes his character arc (yes! a zombie film with a character arc! Can you believe it!) and journey towards the end of the film believable and heartwarming.

Which isn’t to say that Nyong’o isn’t a bad ass. Oh, she is. But the writer/director Abe Forsythe presents her bad assery in an interesting way which ties into her job as a teacher. She takes her job as the protector of these kids seriously. If she has to lop the heads off of every zombie on the farm to keep her kids safe, then that’s what she’ll do. That’s a fresh take in my eyes, and better than her being kick ass by default. Of course, the characterization only works because it is Nyong’o playing it. We all know she is a great actress. She has the Oscar to prove it. But she makes the character work.

Image via Neon

Then there’s Josh Gad. On the one hand, his self-loathing kid’s show host is somewhat superfluous. He is basically a walking plot complication that checks of a number or zombie movie archetypes all at once, but you could probably have just as good a film without the character in it.

On the other hand, Gad seems to be having a blast in the role. Have you ever wanted to see Olaf drop the F-bomb ten times in rapid succession? Gad obviously has because he drops those F-bombs with an infectious glee. You enjoy his performance because he seems to be having so much fun.

Image via Neon

Just a warning, the film definitely earns its R-Rating. It might have kids in it, but it definitely isn’t for kids. It’s a zombie movie, so obviously there is gore. And we already mention the cursing in the film, which is so prevalent that Forsythe builds a recurring gag around it. But there is also some nudity, drug use and other adult themes.  So, maybe watch after the kids go to sleep. However, if you are looking for a scary film with a lot of laughs and a lot of heart, then this one is for you.

Have you found a film on streaming that you’d like us to look at? Leave it in the comments and it might appear in a future installment of this feature. 

Avatar für Bill Gatevackes
About Bill Gatevackes 2037 Articles
William is cursed with the shared love of comic books and of films. Luckily, this is a great time for him to be alive. His writing has been featured on Broken Frontier.com, PopMatters.com and in Comics Foundry magazine.
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