Monos (2019): Adventure/Drama/Thriller

A group of teenage guerillas who belong to a shadowy organisation, hold a female doctor hostage, not knowing that heavy military forces are coming to her rescue.

Allegorical, brutal, and nerve-racking! In my previous review, Plane (2022):, I made a specific reference to the lack of realism in both the traditional military operation and guerilla warfare – despite the film’s other qualities. If you want to see what it could potentially look like, watch Monos! Writer Alexis Dos Santos and writer/director Alejandro Landes heavily invest in the realism of a group of youths and their isolation (hence the title that means “alone”, in Greek), making you wonder if you are actually watching a docudrama. Mica Levi’s soundtrack enhances smoothly the already powerful visuals and the editing team’s cuts flow the story naturally, connecting time and space in a way that it feels like you are actually there, observing like an omniscient narrator. Having said that, pay attention to the montage in the end and the way it constructs the group’s advancement. Except for Mosises Aria, the rest of the kids are not actors and this adds to the aforementioned realism, but I found it shocking that Julianne Nicholson (Doctora), who’s also an associate producer, performed her own stunts. All of them! Acting masterclass!

While it’s loosely based on William Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” (1963), it isn’t. “Lord of the Flies”, and Monos are addressed to different audiences. I’ll do a separate review of the former and explain certain differences, in the near future. For now, watch this masterpiece and experience a totally different perspective of life as seen through the eyes of people who have experienced the world in a way we wish we never have to.

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Solidarity for Ukraine 🇺🇦 🙏

Stay safe!

P.S. If past the end credits, you are still wondering about Rambo’s gender, you are meant to.

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