Alejandro Montoya Marin
Alejandro Montoya Marin
You think you've seen bad days? Those ridiculous twenty four hour cycles that seem to exist just to screw you over? Make your precious time on Earth the joke of the galaxy? Perhaps you've been really sick one day? Maybe you've lost your job, or just found out that nasty in-law is coming over for a visit? Regardless of your worst possible day in memory, I can pretty much guarantee you've never had one like Jim. After watching Alejandro Montoya Marin's film "Monday," I now consider Jim the supreme master of the bad day. Not even kidding.
After being fired for a seemingly ongoing problem with his start time, Jim makes his way home to break the news to his girlfriend. All the while dodging calls, because he can't seem to make good on his financial commitments. Seems his life has been one giant pot induced high. He's never grown up. Has no ambition - and just assumes everything will work itself out. Considered to be loser by pretty much everybody except his Mother, one thing is clear. Even before this particular bad day, Jim's life has been that of a hapless teenager refusing to become a man. This fact isn't lost on his girlfriend Alice, who has decided enough is enough, and breaks up with him as soon as he steps through the door. She also decides she's keeping the house - effectively rendering our needy hero homeless. Does this seem like a bad enough day yet? No? Well don't worry because it gets worse.
It seems Alice has gotten involved with a crime boss. A crime boss that now has a contract on his head and today... his number is up. Jim is reluctantly recruited by two dangerous woman to make the hit. An angry ex killing his girls lover? The perfect cover for an organized execution right? What follows is a comedic game of cat and mouse, as Jim attempts to take control of his life and stay alive. If you're a fan of action comedies from yesteryear - you're going to love this. If you're not? Well... you'll probably still love it because when it's all said and done, "Monday" is just pure fun. Corny, exaggerated and just a good time all around.
I really dig the atmosphere that came with this flick. The nostalgic over-the-top feeling is present and accounted for. I could even feel a slight "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" vibe - for anyone who remembers that great movie. I mentioned "Monday" being a little corny somewhere up above, and this comes in the form of awkward dialog at times. But that's alright because it suited the production perfectly. Marin's film also happens to look like it was fun to make - and that's not writing that it wasn't stressful. I'm just saying that by not taking itself completely seriously, some of that translated to the onscreen shenanigans nicely.
If you're wondering how it looks and plays worry not. It's my understanding that "Monday" was created on a very modest budget - but doesn't look the part of an indie micro film. Not at all. The visuals, audio, and especially pacing are all handled excellently. This was a fast fifty minutes. But what really separates this from the average extremely low budget movie? The acting felt perfect. From everyone. That's not to say each and every cast member deserves an Oscar - rather that the portrayals fit the film. The occasional weird sounding deliveries enhanced the overall atmosphere of the movie. Nothing wrong with that.
At the end of the day it all comes down to one question. Was I entertained? The obvious answer is yes. Alejandro and his troupe kept a smile on my face for almost an hour. Something so many big budget features can't seem to do lately. "Monday" may not be the most unique story ever told... but I think that was the point. For me, the nostalgia I felt was half the fun. Nothing wrong with using the familiar to connect with an audience. In my humble opinion? "Monday" earns it's four stars. Laugh out loud moment? That time Jim's best friend Paul was asked to throw something small... as a distraction. Loved it!