Friday, August 6, 2021

Monuments Review: A Quirky and Heartfelt Strange Portrait of Grief

Marguerite Moreau	...	Laura Daniels Rivkah Reyes	Rivkah Reyes	...	Zoe (as Becca Brown) Joel Murray	Joel Murray	...	Steven Lesca David Pasquesi	David Pasquesi	...	Jim David Sullivan	David Sullivan	...	Ted Daniels Paulina Olszynski	Paulina Olszynski	...	Crystal Shunori Ramanathan	Shunori Ramanathan	...	Amber Ira Amyx	Ira Amyx	...	Andy #1 Javier Muñoz	Javier Muñoz	...	Howl Thomas Kelly	Thomas Kelly	...	Andy #2 (as Thomas D. Kelly) Richard Cotovsky	Richard Cotovsky	...	David Keith Kupferer	Keith Kupferer	...	Grant Martin Angela Alise	Angela Alise	...	Paula Sahar Dika	Sahar Dika	...	Erica Kathy Scambiatterra	Kathy Scambiatterra	...	Momma Fallon Katz	Fallon Katz	...	Charlee Sue Gillan	Sue Gillan	...	Judy

Release date: August 3, 2021
Running time: 95 minutes
Written and Directed By: Jack C. Newell (Hope Springs Eternal, 42 Grams, Open Tables)
Starring: David Sullivan (“The Wilds,” “Sharp Objects,” “Flaked”), Marguerite Moreau (Wet Hot American Summer, The Mighty Ducks), Javier Muñoz (“Shadowhunters”), and Joel Murray (“Mad Men,” “Shameless”).

When Laura is killed in an accident, her estranged husband, Ted, wants to honor their time together by scattering her ashes where they first fell in love. But, he’s being chased by her family and the memory of the mistakes he made in life.

Kevin Wehby	...	Burton Javoun Baker	Javoun Baker	...	Chad Bill McGough	Bill McGough	...	Percy Zach Twardowski	Zach Twardowski	...	Alfred Produced by  Nick Aiello	...	associate producer Angie Gaffney	...	producer Matt Hyland	...	producer Charles Leslie	...	executive producer Jack C. Newell	...	producer Ed Toolis	...	executive producer
Monuments definitely has  style to it that is fun and infectious.  From the start the movie has an old school opening and style that continues throughout.  The film has a yellowish grain to evoke a classic movie style and some fun, old school transitions to drive this home.  Monuments has a slow setup but I love the quirky indie feel of it.  This translates into the ridiculous performances and some over the top characters, mainly from the antagonist Javier Muñoz.  Hal's overconfident demeanor and dogged pursuit of Ted is enjoyable, as is his complete obliviousness.  But overall the film feels like an old school, quirky indie film.  And this is all accompanied by some upbeat, whimsical music and some strange occurrences that drive home the quirk and the charm. 

However, the movie is confusing at the start as it progresses out of order for the first portion of it.  The jumps back and forth in the timeline to contrast Ted's current life with his time with Laura.  And the film itself is a slow one, although it is not bad.  The journey with Laura can drag as Ted tries to figure out what to do, but it is anchored by some touching moments as he relishes the time he gets back with his wife and tries to figure out what is next.  And although the journey here is quirky overall, it is an enjoyable, fun experience.  And within all of the silliness of the film, there is a lot of heart.  There are some touching scenes as Ted tries to come to terms with what happened, and also to figure out what is next for him.  And the level of comfort between Ted (Sullivan) and Laura (Moreau) is really touching during these scenes.  

Monuments has a quirky style and classic feel, with a mix of humor, over the top characters, and a wild west influence that will keep you entertained.

Watch it.

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Monuments is available digitally and on demand on August 3, 2021.  

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