Monster (怪物) - Finding The Unknown Things

When talking about Japanese monsters in general, we know them as bakemono (化け物), but there is also another term for monsters which is kaibutsu (怪物). Which makes me wonder about this 2023 film which also had its premiere at the 76th Cannes Film Festival.

Starring Sakura Andō, Eita Nagayama, Soya Kurokawa, Hinata Hiiragi, and Yūko Tanaka, initially it feels like a thriller or horror film because of its trailer. But I guess it was intended to redirect the expectation for the storyline which has a very interesting twist.

Initially, the story tells the complicated relationship between mother and child, classmates and their teacher, the school and back to their families. The problems arose with the changes in Minato (Sōya Kurokawa) was noticed by his mother, Saori (Sakura Andō) and this prompted her to investigate the involvement of his teacher Hori (Eita Nagayama) and classmate Hoshikawa (Hinata Hiiragi). Things gets more complicated as more secrets and atrocities are revealed. 

This made me question who the real monster among all the characters is. As almost everyone had influence and interactions leading to the complicated situation of Minato. Something we must realize is that as a society we also can be the monsters to others, our prejudice making bad decisions, and hiding within our own secrets which eventually leads to hurting another person.

Monster also competed for the Palme d'Or and was awarded the Queer Palm and Best Screenplay award. The film was the last scoring project by Ryuichi Sakamoto, who died two months before the release.  It was reported that this movie was sold out during the festival which made the producers of Nathan Studios interested to distribute the film in the Philippines.

Monster (怪物) is now showing in the Philippines brought to us by Nathan Studios

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