movie, movie review, Uncategorized

May 14th, 2016 – Monster Island

monster island

You know how sometimes you find yourself owning a movie and there is really no good reason why you should own that movie. Admittedly, some might say that applies to quite a few movies that I own and in the case of today’s movie, they might be right. See, a while back I was channel surfing late one night and caught a portion of this movie. I was curious about it and looked to see what it was and was surprised to find that it was shown on MTV. But then again, it was an MTV original movie so that kind of makes sense. Anyways, I got a copy of it, this is kind of what I do after all, and that brings us to today’s movie, Monster Island.

The plot: A group of teenagers are running through the jungle being chased by a giant praying mantis. Flashing back, high school senior Josh has won a contest from MTV to have his entire senior class taken to a tropical island to see Carmen Elektra. Josh learns that his sister Jen had entered him in the contest without asking him. Not in the mood to party as his girlfriend had dumped him the week before, Josh confronts Jen when they arrive on the island and she tells him that she had entered him so that he could have fun during his senior year instead of brooding like he had been and that it might possibly be his last chance to get his ex, Maddy, back. Seeing Maddy kissing her new boyfriend, class president Chase, and running into them later makes Josh more depressed. Hearing a strange cry, Josh sees a large winged ant flying around but nobody else sees it and he winds up going backstage with Jen to meet Carmen Electra. Finding himself attracted to Carmen, Josh watches her performance and finds himself dancing along to her performance when suddenly, the giant ant flies through the crowd and grabs Carmen and her bodyguard, Eightball, dropping Eightball in the jungle and flying Carmen towards a mountain in the distance. All of the kids attempt to use their cell phones but are unable to get any reception and Josh’s friend Andy tells him that the island is in the middle of the Bermuda Triangle. Bob Stanton, the producer for the concert tries to calm everyone down and tells them to head back to the boat and the kids start to leave. Josh gets on stage and tries to rally the kids to help him search for Carmen but Bob mentions the waivers that they all signed and says that when the boats navigation systems are back on, they will be leaving, with or without them, causing most of the kids to choose to leave. While Josh, Jen, Andy, and their friend Stack work out what they should do, Bob thinks that filming him could make a huge profit, whether he succeeds or not, and convinces new VJ Lil Mindi and her cameraman GT to go with Josh and document it. Maddy also chooses to stay and convinces Chase to stay as well but he only does so in order to get on TV. The group sets off and after a while, Chase tries taking the lead but ends up getting them lost. As the group starts to argue, Stack tells them to calm down and he climbs a tree to try and see which direction they should go but as he sees the mountain, something in the tree moves and he ends up falling, with Eightball falling on top of him. Eightball doesn’t remember much after the ant dropped him but when he learns that they are going to look for Carmen, he quickly joins them and Stack points out the direction of the mountain. As they are leaving, Maddy notices a strange tribal necklace on the ground and after wiping off the dirt, decides to put it on. Continuing on, the group encounters a giant praying mantis and when GT turns on the camera’s light to film it, the giant insect starts chasing them, bringing us to where the movie started. As they are running, Maddy suddenly stops the group and leads them towards a lake, where she points out some canoes, and the group escapes. Meanwhile, Carmen wakes up inside a nest in the volcano and tries to escape but the ant inside refuses to let her leave. Back in the jungle, Chase attempts to catch some fish while Eightball, Andy, Jen, and Stack go get more firewood. Josh talks to Maddy about the canoes and Maddy tells him she feels like she has been on the island before. Suddenly, Chase catches a piranhaman, which quickly begins attacking the group. When it goes after Maddy, Josh manages to use the fishing rod to yank it back from her and the creature ends up tackling GT into the lake and kills him. When it turns it’s attention back to the group, it is shot in the shoulder by Dr. Harryhausen, from the Department of Atomic Energy, who says they shouldn’t be there. Dr. Harryhausen leads them to an abandoned U.S. Army outpost, where he was stationed, and while in his lab, Jen is attacked by a creature he calls Rudy, a genetic hybrid Dr. Harryhausen created. Dr. Harryhausen explains that the island was once home to a primitive tribe if natives but the army relocated all but the most stubborn of the tribe, before the dropped some H-bombs off the coast. Dr. Harryhausen was among those sent to investigate the effects. He then tells them that the island will soon sink and when he learns that they are heading to the mountain, he tries to warn them from it, saying his entire team was killed there, but relents and tells them the quickest way there. As they are leaving, he stops Maddy, who had begun to act weird, and after touching the necklace, tells her where she goes, there is hope. Making there way through the base, Lil Mindi and Chase question whether they should keep going, and Josh admits that if the others want to turn back, he won’t blame them, but Maddy grabs Eightball’s machete and says they should press forward. As they continue towards the mountain, Chase tries to persuade Lil Mindi to delete the footage showing him in a bad light, as he says he is being groomed for a great political future but she refuses. The group are forced to hide as two praying mantises appear and they realize that one is a male and one is a female as the two insects have sex followed by the female biting the male’s head off. As the female leaves, Lil Mindi’s cell phone suddenly rings, attracting the bug’s attention. As the giant insect chases them, Lil Mindi speaks with Bob and after telling him of the footage she has, he tells her to head to a small beach to the west of the mountain and he will pick her up there. The group comes to a bridge and they start to cross but Josh notices that Eightball is missing. As the mantis gets close to the bridge, Eightball appears in a bulldozer and starts forcing the mantis off the cliff but when it latches onto the bulldozer, Eightball yells at Josh to find Carmen, just before he topples over the cliff with the insect. Chase panics and wants to leave and Maddy slaps him and calls him a coward before saying the mountain is an hour’s journey As the group starts to head off, Josh looks one last time at the cliff where Eightball died and Maddy stabs the machete into the ground as a memorial to him. Reaching the mountain, Josh and the others work on fashioning some weapons but as they start to head up the mountain, Lil Mindi and Chase decide to leave. When Lil Mindi runs into a giant spider web, Chase takes the opportunity to grab the bag with the footage and destroy the tape of the piranha man attack, then learns where the boat is meeting them and heads out, leaving Lil Mindi to be killed by the spider. Meanwhile, Josh and the others climb the mountain and realize that it is a giant ant hill. When an ant attacks them, Josh kills it with his homemade bow and arrow, and they are joined by Dr. Harryhausen, who decided to come help them. Making their way into the ant hill, Dr. Harryhausen tells them that the army had bombed the ant hill and killed most of the ants but the queen and a few ants had survived and killed the soldiers in retaliation. Reaching the main chamber, the group sees that the warriors from the missing tribe have been enslaved by the ants, and the queen ant had grabbed Carmen in order to keep the slaves happy. When Maddy says she has to help her people, Dr. Harryhausen explains that she is the incarnation of the island’s warrior goddess. Maddy summons power from the necklace to revitalize the tribe’s spirit and calls out for them to attack the ants. Josh and Jen use the distraction to rescue Carmen but suddenly, the island starts shaking and Dr. Harryhausen says that the island is starting to sink. Meanwhile, Chase makes it to the beach and starts waving towards the boat but due to the seismic activity, and Bob not recognizing Chase, the boat sails off and Chase swims out after it. Dr. Harryhausen leads Josh and the others to a shaft where they slide down the mountain to safety and gives Rudy to Jen to take care of but Dr. Harryhausen stays behind and uses a vial of nitro he had to kill the ant and seal the mountain. As the group finds themselves stranded, Josh tries telling Maddy how he really feels and ends up ripping the necklace off of her, causing Maddy to return to normal. As the two embrace, the group notices a helicopter approaching and Nick Carter exits and asks if they are all okay. Carmen explains that he was the mystery musical guest and they all quickly get on the helicopter, along with two members of the tribe, and they leave the island as the mountain explodes. As they fly away, Josh and Maddy kiss while below, Chase continues swimming, unaware that he is being followed by the piranhaman.

This is a stupid, low-budget, spoof of the giant insect movies from the 50’s that does manage to make me laugh, mainly because of how ridiculous it was. The acting was a mixture of good and terrible. I did like the fact that Adam West’s character was called Dr. Harryhausen, in tribute to Ray Harryhausen. The plot was fairly simplistic and stupid to be honest and the special effects were very bad. There really is no reason for me to find this movie funny but I do. I can’t explain it because this really is a bad movie, but I just find it funny to watch. That being said, I know that this is not something that many people will want to watch.

Rating: 2 out of 5

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