Monsters and Men (2018)

R   |    |  Drama


Monsters and Men (2018) Poster

The aftermath of a police killing of a black man, told through the eyes of the bystander who filmed the act, an African-American police officer and a high-school baseball phenom inspired to take a stand.

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5.4/10
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  • Cara Buono at an event for Monsters and Men (2018)
  • Anthony Ramos at an event for Monsters and Men (2018)
  • Cara Buono at an event for Monsters and Men (2018)
  • Reinaldo Marcus Green at an event for Monsters and Men (2018)
  • Kelvin Harrison at an event for Monsters and Men (2018)
  • John David Washington and Anthony Ramos in Monsters and Men (2018)

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7 October 2018 | jdesando
A measured, realistic look at the consequences of "stop and frisk."
If Monsters and Men were a more incendiary testimony to police brutality, as its title suggests, the audience would be fired up to demonstrate in favor of minorities who have been wronged in "stop-and-frisk" injustices. Fortunately, it's not more volatile; it is rather a thoughtful, albeit measured, rumination on racism and inequality.

Debut director, Reinaldo Marcus Green, takes a careful look at an event that sounds like the death of Eric Garner in 2014 Staten Island. In Brooklyn's Bed-Stuy neighborhood, Nuyorican Manny (Anthony Ramos) witnesses an innocent youth murdered by a policeman in an all-too frequent stop of young black men. Manny spends the first part of the film tortured about the right thing to do with his evidence.

In a second of three segments, black patrol officer Dennis (John David Washington) is conflicted between his loyalty to the force and his understanding of how the system does not favor black men. Although he's dropped from the rest of the film, he represents the moral quandary about the injustices and the fact that some characters will not follow the usual clichés of these message-type dramas.

The film doesn't so much as preach, either through voiceover or ponderous character, as it shows the daily indignities of young NYC black men in the white-dominated system that makes justice elusive for him and his peers.

In the final segment of the tryptic, Zyric (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.) is a gifted young athlete forced by his conscience to join the protest against brutality and at the same time jeopardize his future to play pro baseball. Like Monsters and Men, Zyric asks you to join him deciding to do the right thing. Not everyone does.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the third film of 2018 where John David Washington plays a cop. The other films were "BlacKkKlansman" and "The Old Man & the Gun".


Soundtracks

Sitting in the Park
Written by
Billy Stewart (as William Stewart)
Performed by Billy Stewart
Published by Chevis Publishing Corp
By arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
Courtesy of Geffen Records under license from Universal Music Enterprises

Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Drama

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