COLOSSAL (2016) Reviews and overview

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‘There’s a monster in all of us’

Colossal is a 2017 Spanish-Canadian psychological science fiction monster movie written and directed by Nacho Vigalondo (V/H/S Viral; Open Windows; The ABCs of Death). It stars Anne Hathaway, Dan Stevens and Jason Sudeikis.

After Gloria (Anne Hathaway) loses her job and is kicked out of her boyfriend’s apartment, she leaves her life in New York and moves back to her hometown.

Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis in Colossal (2017)

When news reports surface that a giant creature is destroying Seoul, Korea, Gloria gradually comes to the realization that she is somehow connected to this far-off phenomenon.

As events begin to spin out of control, Gloria must determine why her seemingly insignificant existence has such a colossal effect on the fate of the world…


“Despite the sometimes grand scale Colossal plays its narrative out upon, there’s also a rare kind of intimacy in how Vigalondo comes at the human aspects of his story, making his latest not only a cinematic marvel, but also a deeply affecting drama as well.” Daily Dead


“The script is riddled with lapses that could have been plugged with a minor adjustment or a single line. Individually, they’re forgivable; collectively they amount to an affront. It’s not just plot, but character, too: Vigalondo seems to lose track of his own conceit midway through, so it’s Gloria to tell a story about monsters, not using monsters to enrich Gloria’s story.” BBC

“What at first seems like a work of genius is ultimately an uneven experiment but it’s still one for fans of funny, challenging, character-driven sci-fi cinema: Trainwreck meets Godzilla, and then some.” London Metro


“Though he’s clearly more interested in his human characters than the mayhem in South Korea, Vigalondo’s screenplay only sketches them out, making it hard for Hathaway and Sudeikis to justify some of their dumber and more outrageous behavior […] Still, the cast’s likability keeps us on board…” The Hollywood Reporter

“Though it’s numerous twists have a kind of welcome insanity, the length of the thing, and particularly its deadly over-investment in the Jason Sudeikis character (to the detriment of Gloria’s own emotional arc) undoes it. Lop off an entire half hour of this film’s running time and it might just work as a delightfully weird and funny cult oddity…” The Film Experience


Colossal could use a spot of tightening up, and there are times when it feels just a little too pleased with its own wilful strangeness. But by the climax all concerns have gone out the window, as Vigalondo delivers an operatic finale that feels both earned and genuinely cathartic.” Time Out


Colossal can be off-putting, and unapologetic about it. But it’s all-in on its strange central monster conceit, on its cruel character dynamics, and on its rough, dark sense of humor. It’s the kind of film that’s guaranteed to make people angry, but it’s still unmissable.” The Verge

“The film is a monster movie of sorts, but the real focus is the dramatic journey of a woman whose self-destructive descent has both consequences and collateral damage — neither of which have proven to be her concern. Vigalondo gives these themes a life beyond the norm, and the result is an engaging and frequently surprising film.” Film School Rejects

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