Hulu’s newest original film “Little Monsters” is a charming new take on the zombie subgenre with its mixing of rom-com and horror.
“Little Monsters” focuses on Alexander England’s character, Dave, a rude and selfish rocker who volunteers to chaperone his nephew’s class field trip to a farm in an effort to impress Lupita Nyong’o’s bubbly character, Miss Caroline. Funnily enough, the military base that is coincidentally located down the road from the farm experiences a zombie outbreak which endangers the lives of Miss Caroline and her class.
The film is comparable to other comedic zombie films like “Shaun of the Dead” (2004) and “Zombieland” (2009) except “Little Monsters” doesn’t focus on the violence of the zombie trope, but rather the humanity and hope that shines through it.
Admittedly, the first 20 minutes of the film can be a bit irritable since England’s character is written for audiences to hate and cringe away from him, which at first made me want to stop watching the movie altogether. However, the character grows over the course of the film and really has the audience rooting for him by the end.
Josh Gad’s supporting role as the bitter, two-faced Teddy McGiggles really drives a lot of the comedy forward in the movie and constantly has viewers laughing from how crass his character is. In some scenes, he’s swearing and yelling at kindergarteners over the fact that they’re stuck in a zombie outbreak and in others, he’s talking about his backstory and how many mothers he’s fornicated with.
Over the course of the movie, the relationship between Dave and Miss Caroline really develops and makes for some heartfelt moments as the two talk about each other’s pasts when they find a moment alone.
The cinematography and score of the film isn’t anything to write home about, but the ukulele-playing, Taylor Swift-singing Miss Caroline is the star of “Little Monsters.” Nyongo’s performance carries the film through some of its duller and even more exciting moments. Her character’s goal is to keep the children safe while shielding them from any mental trauma. Whether it’s the juxtaposition of Miss Caroline leading her kindergarten class through a field of zombies while doing the conga or threatening Josh Gad’s character, or Teddy McGiggles, a children’s TV show personality with the shard of a broken ceramic ornament, Nyong’o’s character creates a lot of memorable moments in the film.
Overall, “Little Monsters” brings a fresh take to the zombie genre, reminding viewers that this subgenre of film hasn’t been completely exhausted of any novel ideas.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Thumbnail photo courtesy of @lilmonstersmov Instagram.
Brandon Barzola is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.