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Buy itMonster

Starring: Charlize Theron, Christina Ricci and Bruce Dern
Directed/written by: Patty Jenkins
Rated: R

DVD Details [film review below]

Theatrical trailer(s)

Featurette- Go behind the scenes and watch the transformation from "beauty to beast."

Filmmaking demo featurette - A little bit of film school for your dvd dollar

Interview with Patty Jenkins and BT- Their passion is contagious

Widescreen anamorphic format

In Monster, the stunning transformation by Charlize Theron is truly the definition of a "brave performance." Charlize has stripped away her mask of beauty for her craft and delivers a bit of her soul in the bravest woman's role in years.

There's no prettying up for anyone involved and each scene is positively more intense than the last as the real-life tale of the first documented serial killer in American history, Aileen Wournos, plays out in director-writer Patty Jenkins's wildly candid and honest script.

Story goes… Life's least favorite daughter, down and out hooker Aileen Wournos, is about to give in to all her painful unending daily drama and just blow her brains out - but she figures she just blew a guy for five bucks - she was going to spend it before she did.

She saunters into a local Florida bar and almost immediately is approached by a gal interested in more than a better look at her baseball cap's logo - if you know what I mean…and I think that you do.

The girl, Selby (Christina Ricci), befriends Aileen.

A warm friendship blossoms between the bosom between them. Selby would like it to be a tad more than just friends. Aileen, who was not a lesbian, figures people is people and sex is sex. She starts to feel for Selby and decides what's the difference if it's a woman; she really just needs to love and be loved - by anyone.

Her newfound love gives her the courage to recoup her life - or at least try to. She's setting herself straight; she'll stop tricking and follow the "normal" path - maybe sans a picket fence.

But Aileen quickly learns sometimes things in life are just not fair. She has no job history (legal job history) and is lacking in the social graces one needs to acquire even the menial of jobs.

Frustrated and angered she reluctantly returns to tricking. She has a girlfriend to care for now and they need a place to stay.

Her next trick takes her out to the nowhere area of your mind's darkest corner. He rapes and brutalizes her. Aileen manages to get loose and shoots him dead. This is her first victim.

The kill triggers something raging within her and Aileen will kill seven men before she is caught and ultimately executed. All but one were her "tricks."

The film is remarkable. It unravels the sordid tale brutally and honestly and doesn't pretty up life's warts. The screen is shared by Christina and Charlize most of the time and the dynamics are so energized you feel as if you were pulled into the frames. It's hard to find a script where women rule - without the usual tea side chats and giggle-fests as they discuss girly deeds male writers believe women discuss ('Sex In The City' aside).Patty Jenkins' Monster is rare, strong, and hard work - emotionally and physically - and both actors grab the bullshit by the cahonas and ride Jenkins' vision into the pages of cinematic history.

This Charlize chickbabe has proven once and for all her beauty is only the tip of the leggy iceberg. She positively shed any hint of runway dazzle and sports the flannels, the strolling gate, the toughness and late eighties hairdo her real-life character sported like an armor, while simultaneously handing in a multi-layered Rolla coaster performance. A toast.

Christina Ricci also seems to disappear into her role as Wournos' lover, Selby. She's at once a manipulating accomplice and an innocent bystander oblivious to what actually pays her drink tab…and I don't mean her gal's prostitution. Ya know Christina's a bit creepy anyway, so here she could terrify you. She alsokindalike reminds me of a talented, legitimate, version of a Wynona Ryder type.

Bluntly Speaking? The story is truthful, the actors spectacular, and the direction exact. Patty Jenkins has just kicked opened the door to (hopefully) a helluva career and Theron just proved her talent goes under the skin. The two will be accepting many awards next year...

Snack recommendation: Whiskey shots and a pack of Basic brand 100's

The Emilyism©


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