Monster 2009 R CC

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(482) IMDb 7.3/10
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In her Academy Award-winning role, Charlize Theron portrays the true story of Aileen Wuornos, a woman with a tortured past who turns to prostitution for money, and who eventually turned her anger into a motive for murder, becoming one of America's most infamous serial killers.

Starring:
Charlize Theron, Christina Ricci
Runtime:
1 hour, 49 minutes

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

78 of 91 people found the following review helpful By Jana L. Perskie HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 17, 2004
Format: DVD
Charlize Theron gives a five star+ performance as the executed serial killer Aileen Wuornos, the monster in "Monster." I would have rated the movie the same, except it is just too filled with pain, desperation and hopelessness for me to rank it that high. The script is not particularly strong. We only get a glimpse into the life and mind of this woman, and we never discover what made her kill. Many abused women hate men, but they don't become serial killers. There is also a lot of repetition, as Wuornos goes through her pattern of solicitation, violence and anguish over and over again. Without Ms. Theron's magnificent acting the film would be rather mediocre.
Director Patty Jenkins begins Wuornos' story in 1989-90, just before she was caught and imprisoned. She portrays Aileen more as a victim than as a victimizer. Through an initial monologue and various dialogues the viewer learns of Aileen's very troubled childhood in Michican. Her father, a convicted child-molester, committed suicide. Aileen was raped repeatedly by a family friend, and she began prostituting herself when she was thirteen. Her only job had been as a hooker. I think Ms. Theron portrays Aileen as a woman suffering from serious mental illness. Her moods swing from suicidal depression to euphoric overconfidence. She had delusional periods where she believed that all her dreams would come true and that she was invincible. She is a tough talking lady who drinks too much and barely holds her rage beneath the surface.
It is during this period that she meets Selby (Christina Ricci is superb in this role.), a shy, naive teen, in a bar. Selby is a lesbian who wants to come out of the closet against her family's wishes. She is a misfit, without friends. So is Aileen.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Sapphyre Moon on June 11, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was a Deputy Sheriff at the time that Aileen Wuornos was killing the men. The case was facinating to me because in the begining we were not looking for a female killer. Needless to say we were shocked when we found out that our search was for 2 women. This case was personal to me because one of the men she killed was a friend of mine. He didn't the pattern after the type of men Aileen Wuornos was killing, but at that point when she killed him it wasnt about sex, but the need of money. I am very please that the movie showed that he was only trying to help her out just as he did many other strangers.
Charlize Theron's performance was excellent,and a carbon copy of Wuornos, the attitude and personality were a match.
I strongly believe that Wuornos had been crying out for help to deaf ears her whole life, all she wanted was someone to care about her. And yet all she ever knew was violence and abuse, so she snapped, and then there was no turning back after she killed the first man who violently raped her. Set in her mind all that any man wanted from her was sex, she saw nothing else good about any man. Very sad, maybe this movie can be a lesson to anyone out there who may know someone like her who still has time to be helped before they snap.
Christina Ricci also deserves to recive high credit for her role in the part of Wuornos lover, who in the end turned states evidence to have Wuornos convited of the murders. I strongly recommend this movie. Just don't let the kids watch it.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By JGC on July 11, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"Monster" delves into the mind of the first female serial killer, Aileen Wuornos (Charlize Theron.) But it does not condone what she did or take sides. Instead, the film describes her life over the nine months after she found love with Selby (Christina Ricci); from 1989 to 1990. I really liked the narration/voiceover that Charlize did (as Aileen.) It lent a little credence to the movie and some humanity to Aileen, as well.

Charlize Theron very rightfully won the Academy Award for her portrayal of Aileen Wuornos. Charlize completely metamorphosed her entire look which was so eerie and uncanny because it was impossible to tell that she was acting in a movie. She also changed the sound of her voice, sounding exactly like the women she played. Charlize is a true actress and very deserving of the Best Actress nod from the Academy. Christina Ricci was also excellent playing the shy and introverted Selby, and has proven herself to be a very accomplished cinema actress.

The movie follows the tale of harried and hopeless Aileen Wuornos as she tries to pick up the pieces of her shattered and tattered life. When Aileen meets Selby it was almost love at first sight. Selby practically saved her life and for that Aileen was forever in her debt. I think my favorite scene was when they were together in the bed (that first night they met) and Selby asks Aileen if she could touch her face. Aileen seemed so sensitive and gentle.

Besides that horrible rape scene and other depictions of degradation (I really hated that scene with that scumbag cop that picked her up after her job interview), I also found the scenes when Aileen tried to look for work very bitter. No one would give her a chance or listen to her. She had no money, no education, no family; absolutely nothing.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Schtinky VINE VOICE on May 23, 2005
Format: DVD
Monster is based on the true story of female serial killer Aileen Wuornos, a common prostitute that left a string of dead Johns in her wake. Aileen (Lee) is on the verge of taking her own life when she meets up with Selby, a lesbian who is looking for companionship. Selby gets Lee to talk, and they agree to meet again the next night. Lee needs money, so she takes to the streets to make some cash.

Her last John brutally beats and rapes her, and in an act of (what seemed to be) self-defense, Lee shoots him to save her own life. Selby and Lee hit it off and decide to set up house together, each having their own ideal of what 'a real life' should entail. While Lee believes that giving up hooking and finding a real job is the key to her new life, Selby is too dependent to go out and get herself a job, therefore remaining reliant on Lee's income as a prostitute. Life does not stay peachy for the new lovers, and after many heart-breaking rejections from the job market, Lee returns to hooking in order to feed her and Selby.

Whether Lee had simply had enough of prostitution, or whether the last brutal John soured her, or simply the idea that she had gotten away with it once, Lee adds a new twist to her hooking schema; murder.

Monster is not a fast paced story of the police investigation hurdling towards finding a killer, but the horrifically commonplace lives of two women who want more out of life but can't seem to find their way out of the trenches. It didn't strike me as 'what would you do for love' type of story either, simply a deviant's twisted mentality of right and wrong. It is a story of the human inside the animal, even a human as alien as Lee was, and the presentation those animals will make to remain human as long as they can.
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