, Port Arthur, Texas


March 30, 2009

Monstrously good fun


“Monsters vs. Aliens”

Dreamworks Pictures

Directed by Rob Letterman

Starring Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Laurie, Will Arnett, Seth Rogen, Rainn Wilson, Stephen Colbert, Kiefer Sutherland and Paul Rudd

Rated PG


3 Stars        


It continues to be a banner year for animation, with “Monsters vs. Aliens” proving to be a fast-paced and witty family adventure that simultaneously pays homage to and pokes fun at all those cheesy science fiction films from the 1950s. Tonally, it plays very much like the “Shrek” films, which is appropriate considering that it comes from Dreamworks Animation. So, if you like the humor-and-heart mix of “Shrek,” then the odds are that you’ll love these “Monsters.”

Reese Witherspoon plays an ordinary woman who is about to be married when she’s suddenly struck by a meteorite (I hate it when that happens!) Rather than squishing her flat, the woman grows into a nearly 50-foot tall woman — fortunately she bought an elastic wedding gown, this is a PG rated flick, after all.

Now named Ginormica, the government swoops in and whisks her off to a secret bunker where they’ve been keeping a small group of monsters safe from public eyes. Ginormica’s new friends include a brilliant-but-mad scientist, Dr. Cockroach, P.H.D. (Hugh Laurie) as well as a bombastic half-fish, half-ape hybrid known as the Missing Link (Will Arnett) and most notably, there’s B.O.B. (Seth Rogen), the brainless blue blob who’s always ready with a funny wisecrack.

The Alien part of the matchup is played by Gallaxhar (Rainn Wilson) who lands his giant robot spacecraft in a bid to conquer the earth. Since the military can’t compete with Gallaxhar’s alien technology, the monsters are called it to fight for humanity, with some very funny results.

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