Monster Hunter is the latest video game to movie adaptation brought to you by the same team that pumps all the best mindless pulp adaptations that have little to nothing to do with the original source material. Paul W.S. Anderson, who brought us all of the guilty pleasure train wrecks of the Resident Evil movies, returns to numb our minds with spectacle, silly yet adorable characters, and lets not forget his ageless wife, Milla Jovovich.
If you think the likes of Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel spawned the strong female lead action movies, then it’s time you step out of the 20 year hole you’ve been hiding in, and discover the awesomeness that Milla has been bringing to the silver screen for decades now. Seriously though, how does she look exactly the same as she did in 5th element? Sign me up for whatever Vudu magic is involved. Meanwhile, let me tell you a few reasons why you may want to mask up and boogie your butts to the local theatre like old times to watch this hour and 45-minute circus show. Or not…
Monster hunter follows Natalie Artemis (Milla Jovovich) an army ranger and their team who get sucked into another dimension/world where they must fight for their lives to survive. Milla is supported by the incredibly talented Tony Jaa who you may know from Ong-Bak or the Protector. The unlikely duo are forced to work together to survive.
So what’s good? While some of the dialogue is a little silly Tony and Milla play off of each other incredibly well. When they are the focus the movie actually plays quite nicely. Paul also does a wonderful job at setting up shots and making the monsters and scenery look quite exquisite. The spectacle is everything you would want it to be. There is a lot of inspiration drawn from the game, and it even makes a fun attempt at making the looting practical and sensible. There really is a lot of fun stuff going on here. For people with no basis in the game franchise, there won’t be much to be offended at except…
What’s not good? Come on Hollywood. Learn how munitions work. It’s clear that the people making this movie have no idea how modern weapons work and what they are capable of. Every time I see a grenade blow up into a fiery inferno I can’t help but roll my eyes. They also clearly have no idea how powerful some of these military rounds are in comparison to each other. But that is definitely more of a personal peeve of mine and one that non-gun enthusiasts probably won’t even blink at. I do also just have to say that on a similar note they don’t seem to understand what heat does to chocolate. You’re telling me a chocolate bar remains in pristine condition after being carried around in a pocket in a scorching desert all day? I’m sorry but I must call bullshit.
Ok, maybe I’m being a little nit-picky here. While the aesthetics and design of this movie are on point the story and characters are severely lacking. I have no idea why they thought it had to have any basis whatsoever in the real world, but that’s what we got. At the very least, it sets itself up nicely for a sequel that could hold a little more true to the game lore. Knowing what I know about Paul W.S. Anderson, we won’t get anything true to form outside of the occasional embarrassing nod to fans who wish he just wouldn’t.
Monster Hunter Score
On a personal level, I actually had fun watching this movie. I wasn’t expecting much from this movie. I knew it wouldn’t be following much from the source material. But this team always has a way of making me chuckle and enjoy the ride regardless. This is one that I plan to go see again with my 7-year-old son and it will be a wonderful mind-blowing experience for him. Overall I give this movie a 5 out of 10. Largely to do with how fun it was to watch the dynamic between Tony Jaa and Milla Jovovich.
Did you guys watch the movie? What did you think?