Monster Brawl (2011)
By: J.R. McNamara on September 28, 2012  | 
Image | Region 1, NTSC | 2.35:1 (16:9 enhanced) | English DD 5.1 | 89 minutes (Full Specs)
The Movie
Cover Art
Director: Jesse T. Cook
Starring: Dave Foley, Art Hindle, Robert Maillet, Jimmy Hart
Screenplay: Jesse T. Cook
Country: USA
External Links
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So, readers of Digital Retribution, and more specifically my reviews, will know that I have a massive love of horror, comics, video games and Doctor Who. Well, in an effort to achieve the "Nerdiest man on the planet" award I must now reveal something else to you: I am addicted to UFC and WWE. That's right; both of these are the only sports that I am even remotely interested in. And yes, WWE is a sport!

Monsters Brawl tells us the tale of the first wrestling league featuring monsters of the world, including a Cyclops, a Mummy, a Werewolf, a Witch (called Witch Bitch), a zombie, a vampire (known as Lady Vampire), a creation of Frankenstein (referred to here as 'Frankenstein' and played by WWE's Kurrgan) and a rip off of Swamp Thing known as 'Swamp Guts'. The whole shebang is hosted by ring announcers Buzz Chambers (Dave Foley with his amazing inflating body and deflating career doing a Howard Cosell impression) and Sasquatch Sid Tucker (Art Hindle... why?), with colour commentary by Jimmy Hart and a narrator (played by the totally slumming it Lance Henrickson). The fights are done as a couple of middleweight events, followed by the heavyweights in a 'round robin' kind of situation, with the winner of each fight advancing to the next round until there are only two monsters left for the final beastly beat-down!

Essentially a collection of monster-on-monster fight scenes, Monsters Brawl's wrestling and mixed martial arts influences are obvious, and not just because this movie features a lot of battling beasts. In the cast we have WWE's Jimmy 'The Mouth from the South' Hart, Kevin Nash, TNA's Kelly Couture and UFC referee Herb Dean, so wrestling and UFC completists take note! The influences just don't come from the world of monster movies and wrestling either, as every time one of the monsters commits an action that is seen as incredible, a Mortal Kombat styled phrase is thrown out. None of them as good as 'Toasty' though. There are also piss-takes of Animal Planet and Twilight for your amusement.

Visually the movie is surprisingly slick and its monsters look pretty good, even though they are mostly generic/classic designs, the most uninspired of them being Swamp Guts. The main set of the graveyard/wrestling ring looks great, especially when you consider Monster Brawl's limited budget.

Now as much as all this sounds like you could geekgasm in your Iron Man Underoos, tragically the film is a pile of crap. There is zero tension, the puns aren't much better than the worst that Jerry 'The King' Lawler would come up with on WWE, and what little plot there is exists only to only serve as filler between the fights, which are below average wrestling bouts. If the wrestling or the story had been any better I could overlook the other faults, but neither really rise to the occasion.
Monster Brawl is presented in a neat and clear anamorphic 2.35:1 aspect ratio.
Presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 surround the audio is excellent, using the surround channels effectively during Monster Brawl's fight scenes.
Extra Features
The audio commentary with writer/director Jesse Thomas Cook and producers John Geddes and Matt Wiele is a comprehensive talk-through, with almost every aspect of the film getting referred to in detail.

Monster Brawl: Beyond the Grave is an interesting look at the suffering a small time filmmaker goes through for his craft, but it is all done with a fair bit of light heartedness. The worst thing about this documentary is the voice-over which is obviously read. Off. A. sheet. Very. Slowly. And. Deliberately.

Tales from the Hart: Jimmy Hart Outtakes is a selection of outtakes of Hart, and they are pretty damn funny and there are some great wrestling memories as well.

Trailer is unsurprisingly, the trailer.
The Verdict
I really wanted to like this, but it was as dumb as a box of hammers. Sorry.
Movie Score
Disc Score
Overall Score

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