Monolith (2024) Movie Review – An alien invasion story? Or something far more relatable?

An alien invasion story? Or something far more relatable?

On the surface, Monolith appears to be a science-fiction movie about a disgraced journalist who uncovers a mystery surrounding strange black bricks that appear to be of alien origin.

But as the story goes on, it becomes apparent that the movie might be about something else besides; a facet of life that many will be able to relate to.

Lily Sullivan (Evil Dead Rise) stars as the unnamed journalist who has fallen from grace because of a recent scandal. After falling from her lofty position, she joins the world of podcasting where she positions herself as somebody with an interest in the strange and unusual. 

An idea for her latest podcast comes when she receives an email with the word “brick” in the title. Upon further investigation, she learns of mysterious black bricks that have somehow found their way into people’s homes. These bricks seem to have a supernatural hold over their owners, causing them to have visions and feelings of overwhelming dread. 

As the journalist delves further into the story, it becomes apparent that she has a personal connection to one of the people she speaks to. Not only that but she also starts to remember an occasion from the past when she herself came into contact with a black brick. At this point, we are given cause to question the movie. Are we watching a journalist uncover an alien conspiracy? Or is the whole thing just a metaphor for something far more earthly? 

Monolith is not a movie that is easy to understand. It’s as abstract as the black bricks that are smaller but no less mysterious than the monolith that appeared in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001, which was extraterrestrial in its design. That classic piece of sci-fi was about mankind’s first contact with aliens, but Monolith might not be, despite the journalist’s belief that she might be uncovering something that is out of this world. 

We discussed our thoughts about the movie’s meaning in our Ending Explained article. However, Monolith is open to interpretation, so you might fasten the pieces of the puzzling plotline together in a different way. That’s fine, of course, as we are all entitled to our own opinions. It’s possible that the movie’s director Matt Vesely and writer Lucy Campbell wanted us to scratch our heads and form our own understanding of the baffling story. 

In terms of production values, Monolith isn’t a movie that has a large budget. It’s mostly confined to one room, with Lily Sullivan being the only person we see for the majority of the running time. We do hear the voices of others during the journalist’s interviews with her subjects, so the podcasting journo isn’t entirely alone as she digs deeper into her story.

Monolith isn’t a dull movie, despite its single setting, as there is a palpable sense of tension as the journalist gets closer to the truth. Sullivan’s performance is key, as it’s through her eyes that the mystery is unravelled. She’s never less than believable as the headstrong journalist; a character who isn’t particularly likeable but who we still fear for as the mind-bending story nears the conclusion. 

Some might find the ending to be frustratingly abstract but we don’t always need a story that ties events up neatly. As alluded to earlier, we are allowed to make up our own minds about the movie’s meaning. Some directors pander to the masses with an explanatory reveal. But mercifully, this isn’t what we get here. The truth is out there but as for what that truth is? Well, that’s for you to decide!


Read More: Monolith Ending Explained

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  • Verdict - 7/10

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