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Review: 'Little Monsters' a bloody good time

Review: 'Little Monsters' a bloody good time

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Little Monsters

The start of this school year has teachers working to protect their students and themselves from a nasty virus. The plot of Little Monsters shows us something similar. The Australian horror-comedy includes a class of kindergartners, a dedicated teacher and one loser uncle tagging along on a field trip to get closer to the teacher. When zombies descend on the outing, it is the two adults who must keep the students safe. See? It’s just like what our teachers are dealing with now…but with face-eating zombies.

What this Hulu Original movie has going for it is Lupita Nyong’o as the perkiest Miss Caroline willing to fight zombies and keep her students un-traumatized by the horde. The rest of the film may not live up to Nyong’o’s  sunny performance, but it offers enough fun among the weaker horror elements. Little Monsters starts like a rom-com, with our inconsiderate loser Dave (Alexander England) making dinner party guests miserable as he constantly argues with his girlfriend. After the two break up he moves in with his sister Tess (Kat Stewart) and little nephew Felix (Diesel La Torraca, who is on cute overload). When meeting Miss Caroline while dropping off his nephew at school, Dave falls for her and is soon volunteering to help out with a school trip to a local petting zoo/farm.

Thanks to a nearby U.S. Army testing facility—because of course, there’s a U.S. Army testing facility in the Australian countryside—zombies are soon on the loose. That’s the fun in the film. Taking innocent 5-year-olds and convincing them that the mayhem around them is fake keeps things lighthearted. There’s cartoonish gore, and the film leans into laughs over scares.

The weakest plot point is poor Dave. Can this inept and selfish oaf become a decent hero by the end of the film? The fact that he becomes more pressed and put together as the film goes on, while everyone else gets messy and chaotic, points to yes.

The film’s concept sounds better than its actual execution, but it has its moments. Lupita Nyong’o is the real reason to watch Little Monsters. It’s nice to see a teacher keeping her children safe in the midst of tumult, even if it’s the slow-zombie kind.

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