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Monstro (DVD)

Not all B-movie are good fun

Movie Specs

Starring Nelli ScarletKarli MaddenKyrie CapriKate WattsNorman Yemm Movie Poster
Directed By Stuart Simpson Certificate 18
Running Time 75 mins
UK Release Date October 22, 2012
Genre Horror
Our Rating
User Rating

Beretta, Rocket and Blondie are three sexy psychopaths on the run with a pile of stolen cash, leaving a blood-soaked trail of corpses in their wake. Taking refuge in an almost deserted fishing village, they come across teenager Hannah and her grandfather Joseph, who warns them to stay out of the water. Not being girls who take kindly to being told what to do they ignore him, unaware that their actions will awaken something deadly out in the depths of the ocean.

There are hundreds, probably thousands, of trashy low budget flicks out there whose shoddy production values and lack of pretence about producing something cheap and exploitative can result in an hour and a half of something that won't ever be mistaken for high art, but still remains utterly entertaining. Then there are ones which are just plain bad, the lack of effort put into attempting to craft something worthwhile comes through in the final result, ending up with something that just feels like a waste of your time. If you're not a fan of such low budget trash you may not be aware that such a distinction even exists, but trust me, it's there.

Monstro, sadly, is one of the latter of these two. The enjoyably bad/just plain bad is a difficult balance to strike, especially when you're setting out to deliberately traverse it. To pluck out a high-profile example, Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror worked because it was a loving homage to grindhouse flicks as opposed to a parody of them, whereas Monstro is merely the most basic plotline stretched too far beyond its already brief running time. There are few memorable occurrences other than curvy, tattooed bad girls gratuitously frolicking in the sea. If nothing else, judging by several lingering camera shots we can be sure that director Stuart Simpson is an ass man.

In any kind of horror, the key is populating it with characters you can at least empathise with. Other than being deranged killers, our three anti-heroines possess little in the way of identifiable personalities or reasons to care about what happens to them. That none of the girls possess much individuality could be seen as indicative of their unbreakable camaraderie, but in all honesty it's more likely to be lazy scriptwriting, while much of their behaviour merely jumps back and forth between idle threats of violence laced with unimaginative profanity and pseudo-sapphic interplay. Joseph and Hannah are more recognisable human beings, but it's only with the latter that any attempt at character development is made. The (entirely male) rest of the cast are little more than walking erections with IQ scores in the vicinity of their chest size, whose sole purpose is to be killed gruesomely by stop-motion tentacles.

The lack of pacing and anything much resembling an actual story means that the whole experience is over fairly quickly, but you'll still be left with the feeling of what the point of it all was.

Overall Verdict: Monstro seems to start out mimicking Russ Meyer before taking a detour into early Sam Raimi, but without the self-aware sense of humour of either. If you're looking to augment your collection with modern-day B-movies, you can do a lot better than this.

Special Features:
Acid Spiders Short Film
Sickie Short Film
Crew Commentary
Cast Commentary
Behind the Scenes
Cast Interviews
Deleted Scenes

Reviewer: Andrew Marshall

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