HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)
Windom's Way
True Don Quixote, The
Babymother
Mitchells vs. the Machines, The
Dora and the Lost City of Gold
Unholy, The
How to Deter a Robber
Antebellum
Offering, The
Enola Holmes
Big Calamity, The
Man Under Table
Freedom Fields
Settlers
Boy Behind the Door, The
Swords of the Space Ark
I Still See You
Most Beautiful Boy in the World, The
Luz: The Flower of Evil
Human Voice, The
Guns Akimbo
Being a Human Person
Giants and Toys
Millionaires Express
Bringing Up Baby
World to Come, The
Air Conditioner
Fear and Loathing in Aspen
Kandisha
Riders of Justice
Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki, The
For Those Who Think Young
Justice League: War
Fuzzy Pink Nightgown, The
Plurality
Scooby-Doo! Moon Monster Madness
Night of the Sharks
Werewolves Within
Honeymoon
   
 
Newest Articles
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
   
 
  Monster Trucks Engine Failure
Year: 2016
Director: Chris Wedge
Stars: Lucas Till, Jane Levy, Thomas Lennon, Barry Pepper, Rob Lowe, Dannny Glover, Amy Ryan, Holt McCallany, Frank Whaley, Aliyah O’Brien, Daniel Bacon, Faustino Di Bauda, Jedidiah Goodacre, Samara Weaving, Ruairi MacDonald
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: Near this small town in the middle of nowhere is an oil drilling research station, and that has found a large water table below the surface of the earth which could, according to their investigation, conceal a huge reserve of black gold. However, the resident scientist Jim Dowd (Thomas Lennon) expresses a concern there could be life in the water which would prevent them from going any further thanks to environmental laws and requirements, something that proves accurate when a creature is seen on the camera, and worse than that, when the water pressure causes a spout, three hitherto unknown beasts are sent up into the air with it. Two are captured - but one gets away.

There's a lesson to be learned in Monster Trucks, and it was not the ecological one you might have anticipated. No, it was more a lesson for studio bosses: not only do not entrust members of your family with concocting the high concepts for your would-be blockbusters, definitely make sure those family members are not four-year-old boys. That was the most memorable aspect of the movie, that the studio boss had asked his toddler son what he would like to see in a film, and the moppet announced that his dream project would be a story featuring monster trucks that were monsters, actual monsters, as well as trucks. If this sounds a shaky foundation to build your moneyspinner on, you'd be correct.

Indeed, this production, which apparently was haemorrhaging money even before it was released upon an indifferent world, was blamed for the poor performance of Viacom's film division for that year, more or less exclusively, as it apparently takes a lot of cash to realise the dreams of a little boy in cinematic form. As it stood, the film had a chance of building a cult following among those hardy few who watched it as kids, in the way that family movies from the nineteen-eighties amassed a nostalgic appreciation many years after the fact thanks to parents looking back on the tat of their youths and showing them to their kids. Of course, not all of that material was tat, some of it was perfectly fine.

Great even, but Monster Trucks was not that. It did contain some interest in watching grown adults trying to make a convincing integrity out of what would have been more accomplished as a crayon drawing held by a novelty magnet on a fridge door. Therefore a degree of world-building was necessary to crowbar the concept into something approaching a believable premise, within the context of the fiction at any rate, so we were asked to accept that there were subterranean monsters which lived on oil, fair enough, that's not too far above some fifties sci-fi B-movie, but also that they had no qualms about receiving that oil while crammed into a customised truck that they were powering, which was considerably less easy to swallow, it was in effect, downright bizarre without giving an inkling anyone thought it was.

A prime example of a project where nobody stopped to think, wait, isn't this just stupid, not to mention one of the thinnest premises outside of a straight to DVD cheapo CGI animated effort featuring talking animals that thoughtless parents buy for their little ones to keep them quiet for an hour and a half of peace. A lot like one of those Ice Age movies,which may be cheap and cheerful but had made a massive profit, and shared a director with Monster Trucks, Chris Wedge, except they were little more than lowest common denominator fluff, yet here we were supposed to be dealing with serious emotions (the lead character has parent problems), then there's the environment and faceless corporations to deal with for a straight-faced appeal to social conscience. When you boiled it down, this was your basic eighties smalltown family sci-fi given an update into twenty-first century oblivion, there was little to captivate any but the least demanding viewer, yet somehow it cost over a hundred million dollars, and lost about that too. Music by David Sardy.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1688 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: