A Monster Calls
Our next Rialto Recommends selection premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival. When we saw it we quite enjoyed the film. However when it was released in NY/LA at Christmas and nationwide in early January the market was crowded and the film got lost. So many people totally missed seeing this film in theatres. Based on Patrick Ness' novel with a screenplay by Ness, A MONSTER CALLS stars Lewis MacDougall, Signourney Weaver, and Felicity Jones with Liam Neeson as the voice of the titular monster. A MONSTER CALLS is a visually spectacular drama from director J.A. Bayona ("The Impossible"). 12-year-old Conor (Lewis MacDougall), dealing with his mother's (Felicity Jones) illness, a less-than-sympathetic grandmother (Sigourney Weaver), and bullying classmates, finds a most unlikely ally when a Monster appears at his bedroom window. Ancient, wild, and relentless, the Monster guides Conor on a journey of courage, faith, and truth. Toby Kebbell plays Conor's father, and Liam Neeson stars in performance-capture and voiceover as the nocturnally visiting Monster of the title. A MONSTER CALLS deftly balances dark themes and fantastical elements to deliver an engrossing and uncommonly moving entry in the crowded coming-of-age genre. Rolling Stone raved "Evocative, mysterious and shot through with bruising humor and heartbreak, A MONSTER CALLS-with a deeply-felt performance from Felicity Jones- gets you where you live. There's real magic in it." While the New York Post said "The film belongs alongside "Pan's Labyrinth" in the realm of darkly creative kid-centric films that are, at their core, not really kids' fare at all." A MONSTER CALLS is streaming on HBOMax/HBONow and DirectTV. The film is available to rent for a modest fee from Amazon, GooglePlay, YouTube, Fandango, Vudu and others HERE.