Nacho Vigalondo’s Colossal feels like a kaiju-comedy cult classic in-the-making.
“The thing appeared, same place, exact same time… but it just made a bunch of weird hand gestures.”
This was good! Its underlying themes and ideas were even better! I won’t delve too much into plot details – you deserve to experience this film and all of its layers for yourself – but I will say that eye-catching early premise wears thin. And then it quietly switches things up and becomes ten times better as a result. From a filmmaking perspective, this is as innovative as they come. Nacho Vigalondo, working off a relatively minimal budget of $15M, crafts a monster movie that feels far more destructive than any superhero or kaiju extravaganza in recent years. The operative word here is feels. Vigalondo conveys so much threat through subtext and shrewd direction – he doesn’t need those big ol’ ‘sposions.
His cast help too, namely Anne Hathaway, Dan Stevens & Hall Pass icon Jason Sudeikis. It’s really a trio of strong performances. Everyone else fades into the woodwork a little – they’re all so strangely passive. Hathaway’s the highlight – this is undoubtedly her movie – though the onscreen chemistry she shares with Sudeikis makes for one of the most interesting double act’s I’ve seen all year. Tonally, it feels like a mainstream/Sundance dramedy-hybrid meets enigmatic sci-fi affair – and mostly pulls it off (it maybe tries to do a little too much). Pleasantly, it never takes itself too seriously – yet seriously enough to pack quite the dramatic punch. This feels doomed to fail at the box office (and looking at those numbers, is right on course) – but should hopefully find a loving audience in the long-run. It’s a cult classic in-the-making – so if it’s showing near you, try to be on the right side of this one.
Avoid spoilers at all cost! (I worked very hard to make sure this piece didn’t fall into that category).