REVIEW: 10 things you’ll realize when ‘A Monster Calls’

by: Jem Dimalanta (Gen Z Correspondent) 

1. “You do not write your life with words… You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.”

Our life isn’t written in words that we speak but by the actions we do moving forward. The things we always think about don’t really matter. The only thing that matters is what we do. All of us don’t know what will happen in the future. Just do what you do best.

Conor O'Malley, played by Lewis MacDougall (Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

Conor O’Malley, played by Lewis MacDougall (Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

2. “There is not always a good guy, nor there is a bad guy. Most people are somewhere in between.”

The good people we know were not always good. They have also experienced being bad; and the bad ones were once good, too. Some people are neutral and it depends on how they act or what they do to other people. Not all heroes are always good, they sometimes do things that are bad just to hide the truth from people for their own sake.  Not all villains are bad either; they sometimes sacrifice themselves or  take the blame in order to protect the ones they care about.

The Monster, voiced by Liam Neeson. (Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

The Monster, voiced by Liam Neeson. (Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

3. Not all monsters are bad; some are kind, and some will make you realize the truth.

Not all monsters are bad. There are those from our nightmares that can scare us but cannot hurt us as much as real people can. There are also monsters that are a bit scary, cruel, and harsh but kind. They are the ones that help you realize the truth and overcome your fears.

(Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

(Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

4. “Your mind will believe comforting lies while also knowing the painful truths that make those lies necessary. And your mind will punish you for believing both.”

We sometimes  believe in things that aren’t even real because we do not want to accept the painful truth. Every time we believe in those things, we only regret the outcome of what our belief  has gotten us into. Sometimes, we refuse to accept the truth because it brings us pain and we refuse to get hurt.

(Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

(Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

5. “Stories are important. They can be more important than anything, if they carry the truth.”

Each one of us has a story to tell but the most important factor is the truth behind it all.

6. “Stories don’t always have happy endings.”

The truth about life is that it is never a fairytale.

(Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

(Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

7. “Sometimes, people need to lie to themselves most of all.”

When painful experiences come, we sometimes lie to ourselves so we don’t get hurt too much.

8. “Belief is half of all healing. Belief in the cure, belief in the future that awaits.”

All it takes is believing in the truth and accepting that everything that happens in our life has a reason.

(Scene from 'A Monster Calls' [2016])

(Scene from ‘A Monster Calls’ [2016])

9. Our nightmares are reflections of what we fear most.

10. It doesn’t matter what other people think of you, what matters is what you think of yourself.

*All quotes came from the movie ‘A Monster Calls’ (2016)


Believe it or not, these were written after a 15-year-old viewed Pioneer Films’ A Monster Calls, which was based on a 2011 novel written by Patrick Ness. Directed by Juan Antonio Bayona, the film was initially released early September as part of the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival.

The story follows the life of Conor O’Malley (played by Lewis MacDougall), an artistic boy “too old to be a kid and too young to be a man” who tries to deal with the terminal illness of his mother (Felicity Jones) and the attacks by local school bully Harry (James Melville). One night, Conor encounters a “monster” (Liam Neeson) in the form of a giant humanoid yew tree who has come to tell him stories and soon begins to help Conor fix his unhappy life.

Albeit the dark themes, the eponymous fantasy film has earned good reviews worldwide. It’s certainly a must-watch for all ages, as recommended by our Gen. Z correspondent.

From Pioneer Films, A Monster Calls opens on November 2, 2016 in cinemas nationwide.

More reactions:

“A heart-touching movie about a boy who is in need of help to save her cancer-stricken mother through the guidance of a monster that teaches him about life, on how we should accept the painful truth rather than the comforting lie, learning to let go of things, and also on how to value them.” – Phoebe Bautista, Gen Z Correspondent

“Highly recommended for all ages. Although the movie is originally meant for children, the theme digs deep into the emotions of all the viewers – young and old. The monster and fears portrayed in the film means more than the literal depiction in the story. You might even shed a tear or two.” – Jem Dimalanta, Gen Z Correspondent

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