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Category:    Home > Reviews > Horror > Giant Monster > Action > Monsters: Dark Continent (2014/Anchor Bay Blu-ray)

Monsters: Dark Continent (2014/Anchor Bay Blu-ray)

Picture: B+ Sound: B+ Extras: C- Film: B

Gareth Edwards (Director of 2014's Godzilla and the upcoming Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One) came out with one of the best debut films in history with Monsters, a film with a unique style and incredible special effects. What worked most was the fact that despite giant monsters attacking, what we saw was more the aftermath of destruction from these creatures rather than seeing them cause the destruction. In this follow up film, surprisingly with no contribution from Edwards himself, but rather director Tom Green (maybe he should be known as 'Thomas Green' to avoid confusion with the former MTV star? Just a suggestion) comes Monsters: Dark Continent. While the first Monsters film focused on the perspective of a Journalist and a shaken American Tourist, this film is more from the perspective of the Military and is basically a war film that just so happens to have giant monsters in the background.

Unlike Starship Troopers, which was more of a flat out satire/comedy (meant darkly), this is more of the hardened war film akin to The Hurt Locker with more time spent with the soldiers and more brutal attacks by the monsters themselves. Too bad these military characters aren't more likeable nor as dramatic as leads as intended, which almost gives the creatures more compassion. Showcasing the same 'look' of the first film along with great special digital effects of the monsters when they are shown, Monsters: Dark Continent is a fun follow-up to the original and definitely worth seeing for fans of giant monster fare. Is it as good of a sequel as James Cameron's Aliens? No. But it's still pretty entertaining.

Ten years on from the events of Monsters, and the Infected Zones have now spread worldwide. In the Middle East a new insurgency has begun. At the same time there has also been a proliferation of Monsters in that region. The Army decide to draft in more numbers to help deal with this insurgency. We follow four fresh new recruits from Detroit as they all excitedly look forward to performing what they were trained to do. At first it all seems like a game to them but things quickly change when they are given a special mission; to rescue five soldiers who have been lost deep in the Infected Zone.

The main focus of their mission is human but they are instructed to take down any creatures that get in the way along the route. We have generally learned to live along side these giant creatures as much as any other land based animal. The military only strike to control numbers. Venturing deep into the IZ, the young troops embark on a life-altering mission through the heart of monster territory. By the time they reach their goal, they will have been forced to confront themselves with the true horrors of eradicating the alien threat.

The presentation on the disc is incredible, captured in high definition 1080p with a 2.39:1 aspect ratio, with incredible detail, high contrast, and barely a hint of artifacts. Combined with a powerful, lossless DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 track, there really isn't much to complain about presentation wise here.

Bonus features are pretty slim - with a Behind The Scenes Featurette that clocks in around a mere 3 minutes and a Trailer. There could have been some great opportunity for supplements here but oh well.

- James Harland Lockhart V



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