Imagine every time you go out drinking, a massive lizard-like monster causes mass destruction in South Korea. Your wild behaviour literally manifests itself as a Godzilla lookalike, imagine that for a minute… Because this is what happens to Gloria (Anne Hathaway) in Colossal.
This is a weird film. It’s the kind of movie that’s guaranteed to piss a lot of people off, yet there will be those who love it. For moments at a time, it’s upbeat, downbeat, riveting and occasionally boring. I watched it for the high praise it received from critics. It wasn’t as good as I thought it would be, but it’s worth checking out to see this very original story unfold.
At this point, it feels like talking about the plot would be giving too much away. Besides, I went into this with little idea of what the film was going to be about, so I think you should too. But for the sake of this review, I’ll let give you some more info.
Our hero, Gloria is an out-of-work New Yorker with a drinking problem. Her alcohol dependency has wrecked her relationship with boyfriend Tim (Dan Stevens), who kicks her out of their apartment. So, Gloria has no choice but to head back to her hometown. There she runs into Oscar (Jason Sudeikis), an old childhood friend, who now owns a bar. Both are down in the dumps and feel alienated, so they choose to settle into a life of casual drinking.
Soon, a giant monster starts terrorising Seoul and while everyone is freaked out, Gloria takes a closer look. She can’t believe it, but the monster is mirroring her movements. So this movie is a strange mix of sci-fi fantasy and indie drama.
Colossal gives you a fun time, but it’s extremely random and I found its varied tones and vibes annoying. As it progressed, I started to wonder what the hell the director was trying to do with this film. It’s unpredictable, yes, but it seems like somewhere along the line the director lost track of the main story because about halfway in, it starts to veer off course.
I still enjoyed the cinematic sequences, but they never quite hit the mark in terms of being completely satisfying. I really wanted to like this film as much as I did Swiss Army Man, another weird movie that came out last year. The main problem with Colossal is that it doesn’t have an internal logic that you can fully invest yourself in. It is, by a long way, one of the strangest and most erratic films in recent memory, but hilariously it’s the most original, which has to count for something.
Better handling of its whacky premise could have potentially made Colossal a great film. If you want to see an amazing monster movie, this isn’t it. But if you like crazy, out there premises, then you should give this a go, because overall despite my complaints, it’s solidly entertaining.
Directed and written by: Nacho Vigalondo
Stars: Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Dan Stevens, Austin Stowell, Tim Blake Nelson
Run Time: 110 minutes.