Review: ‘Colossal’ (2017)

What we have here is a prototypical romcom set-up where our protagonist (Anne Hathaway) gets dumped because her life has stagnated and instead of doing something about it, she’s wallowing in her own misery. Her significant other (Dan Stevens) finally tires of it and kicks her to the curb. What comes next? She returns to her hometown and reconnects with an old acquaintance (Jason Sudeikis), of course!

Instead of re-finding herself at home in the usual fashion, however, she soon comes to the realization that every time she enters a local playground at 8:05am, a giant monster appears in Seoul, South Korea and wrecks havoc. Is it coincidence or is something more fantastical at play?

The giant-sized creature action, while limited, is appropriately pulpy and fun. From a design perspective, much like Guillermo Del Toro’s Pacific Rim, this movie skews more towards the Gamera/Daiei side of the equation than the more well-known Godzilla/Toho style of monster designs. In other words, the look of the giant beings is a bit more childish and wacky than its more animal-based Big G brethren. This might be off-putting to some, but I found it to be a delightful touch.

By using kaiju tropes to relay a tale about our own inner monstrous flaws, director/writer Nacho Vigalondo (Timecrimes) has managed to take the stereotypical modern indie romcom and fashion it into something delightfully different. This is the first of his films that I have seen and there’s no way in hell that I’m not going to seek out his earlier three now. This is 100% up my alley.

Colossal is an original science fiction-fantasy comedy. It is written and directed by Nacho Vigalondo and produced by Nahikari Ipina, Russell Levine, Zev Foreman, Dominic Rustam, and Nicolas Chartier. The film stars Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Austin Stowell, Tim Blake Nelson, and Dan Stevens.

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