Earlier this week, the official trailer for Monster Hunter (based on the video game of the same name) dropped to very mixed, leaning towards negative views. And I get why- movies based on video games oftentimes suck and since this is coming from the same guys who made the Resident Evil film series, I completely understand the skepticism and criticism. But I actually can’t wait for this movie.
Look, I get it. It stars Milla Jovovich (because why wouldn’t it?) as a member of the armed forces, and it involves an army unit, blah blah blah, and it looks like this was made by Michael Bay. All reasons that should turn people away from this film. However, when I saw the trailer, it actually started to intrigue me. The idea that there is a completely separate Monster Hunter realm, or world/dimension/universe (whatever), paralleled to this one is actually quite cool and somewhat clever. Take a look at the trailer below and I will explain why.
Okay, so let’s say that you aren’t a fan of Monster Hunter. Let’s say you have never played the games and you couldn’t care less about picking them up. If that is you, there would be far less a reason for you to see this movie and as a result, you wouldn’t be a part of the target audience. Now let’s say that this movie took place in and only in the Monster Hunter world. You would probably be completely lost, especially since you haven’t played the games. So how in the heck would you have any idea what is going on? Easy. Milla and her soldiers.
Behind our world, there is another: a world of dangerous and powerful monsters that rule their domain with deadly ferocity. When an unexpected sandstorm transports Captain Artemis (Milla Jovovich) and her unit (TI Harris, Meagan Good, Diego Boneta) to a new world, the soldiers are shocked to discover that this hostile and unknown environment is home to enormous and terrifying monsters immune to their firepower. In their desperate battle for survival, the unit encounters the mysterious Hunter (Tony Jaa), whose unique skills allow him to stay one step ahead of the powerful creatures. As Artemis and Hunter slowly build trust, she discovers that he is part of a team led by the Admiral (Ron Perlman). Facing a danger so great it could threaten to destroy their world, the brave warriors combine their unique abilities to band together for the ultimate showdown.
You see, if we are following around an unsuspecting group of soldiers, a military unit if you will, they too have no idea what Monster Hunter is (I mean, why would they?). And as you saw in the trailer, some sort of cataclysmic event opens up a portal or door into the Monster world where we see a universe that does a pretty good job of representing the aesthetic of the Capcom video games. The big swords, the clothes, and oh yeah, the massive behemoths roaming the land. By doing it this way, the military and the audience, both unfamiliar with the Monster Hunter world, are in the same boat. Both are caught in a position of asking themselves ‘what the f*ck is going on’ and therefore, the characters in the film can ask questions and get answers on behalf of the audience. If you were dropped into the Monster Hunter world without any exposition, you would not have a good time as an audience member and it is the job of a film to reach as many people as possible. Which is what this trailer is showing us that it is attempting to do.
At the time of this article going live, the trailer above has 4.2m views and 27K likes with 17K dislikes. That’s a petty lousy ratio. But the fact is, this movie is doing you a favor if you haven’t seen or played or even heard of the videogame series. And if you have, it is doing you a favor by bringing in a potentially new audience of fans while still maintaining a beautiful aesthetic of both the Monster Hunter characters and the CGI of the actual monsters. Now I get that this may not convince you to see this movie and I get that it may not convince you to like it, but this film looks pretty rad and I for one am pretty pumped to see it opening weekend. Assuming the theater is open…
Sure, this movie will 100% undoubtedly be filled with cliches and moments that you could see coming from a mile away. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that this movie will be predictable from the opening first sentence to the final credits where we will see either a big bad monster having survived a major fight, our world being overtaken by monsters, or likely a howling screech of a monster off in the distance during the closing credits. Hell, I bet we get all three. Regardless, any skepticism should be placed aside for what will likely be a fun popcorn flick that doesn’t take itself too seriously. I mean, let’s be real. This movie isn’t trying to win any Oscars here. It’s just trying to have fun. And you should too. So give it a chance and wait until you see it. I just hope when we do, I don’t end up eating all my words if I end up writing a scathing review.
Oh yeah, and Ron Perlman is in this movie. Need I really say more?