Movie Review: Colossal

Colossal is an inventive coming-of-age tale for thirty-something trainwrecks, but its uneven script and poorly defined characters turn what could have been an allegorical story into a forgettable movie about self-absorbed adults.

Gloria (Anne Hathaway) is an ordinary woman who, after losing her job and being kicked out of her apartment by her boyfriend, is forced to leave her life in New York and move back to her hometown. 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.

Maturity has no correlation with age. There are plenty of grown-ups whose mentality hasn’t graduated from college, high school or worse elementary. Colossal offers a coming-of-age story for thirty-something trainwrecks.

It’s the age old tale of a troubled adult going back home to get their shit together but here, Nacho Vigolondo adds a unique twist using Kaijus. While the movie is marketed as a comedy, the plot goes into dark unpredictable turns so you don’t quite know where the story is gonna go.

Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis deliver solid performances here. Hathaway makes the best out of the material she’s given, while Sudeikis proves to be a good actor in his post SNL career.

It’s clear that Colossal is trying to say something deep but fails because it doesn’t fully commit to its bizarre premise.

You can see that the movie wants to tell an allegorical tale involving monsters but doesn’t follow through with this concept. We don’t even know what Gloria is being redeemed from because the movie doesn’t dive deep enough into her character and let her truly wrestle with her own demons. Instead, she’s pitted against a vaguely defined villain.

The characters are underdeveloped – an alcoholic that passes out conveniently for the plot to take its bizarre turn and a nice guy douchebag that eventually morphs into his final form – a bitter emotionally abusive asshole. The rest of the characters are either useless or annoying.

Aside from the gaping plot holes, the movie is tonally uneven. Vigalondo is unable to tie the human and fantastical elements together. It’s also puzzling what this movie is for – its not weird enough to be an arthouse indie yet at the same time its too weird to be a commercial film.

Colossal tries to end with an emotionally satisfying finish, but its not wholly convincing.

Colossal is a quirky and unique movie for thirty-somethings. It’s not as compelling as it aspires to be but still manages to be engaging. However once the movie’s trick is revealed, it remains to be a forgettable story about self-absorbed adults.

My Rating: 5/10


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Dan O. says:

    Neat premise. And the execution is fine. Nice review.

    1. Arline says:

      Thanks. I wish it went more deeper though.

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