Jeff Jensen
April 18, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Monster

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
110 minutes
Wide Release Date
01/09/04
performer
Charlize Theron, Bruce Dern, Christina Ricci, Scott Wilson
director
Patty Jenkins
distributor
Newmarket Capital Group
author
Patty Jenkins
genre
Drama

We gave it a D

There are two kinds of God-fearing entertainment consumers in this world: those who believe the Lord is okay with them reading Stephen King and the like, and those who don’t. For the latter, there’s Christian-publishing phenom Frank Peretti. The author has his strengths (1986’s This Present Darkness was a sleep-with-the-light-on page-turner), but Monster is as dumb as a box of hair. It’s about bigfoot. Seriously: bigfoot. A grunty, stinky mess of them who abduct a stuttering woman named Beck. While her husband searches for her, Beck develops a deeper appreciation for the mysterious, misunderstood, murderous beasts. (Of course she does.) Call it Sasquatch Stockholm syndrome. Monster is flabby and not very thrilling, filled with undercooked attacks on evolution (the book’s only distinguishing ”Christian” trait, beyond some bland God-speak) and curious notions about female empowerment. To paraphrase Genesis, it is not good.

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