Before I sat down to watch Monolith I imagined it would be somewhat boring, given the plot seemed to centre around a child being locked in a car and his mother frantically smashing away at it with a wrench to no avail.

In actual fact Monolith was surprisingly good – not amazing, but not a bad watch by any means.

The action kicks off after Sandra is given a Monolith car by her (cheating) husband. This new breed of SUV is sold as the safest car ever created. It’s impenetrable with bullet-proof glass, vault mode, voice commands, computer-controlled and remote app controls.

While on the way to surprise/catch her husband, Sandra gives her two-year-old son, Daniel, her phone to play with in an effort to subdue him while cruising along a remote road. Sandra steps out of the vehicle to check for damage after hitting a deer and while innocently playing with the phone, Daniel locks his mum out of the car and initiates vault mode, making it impossible to break into.

Daniel is now locked inside the car, strapped in his car seat in a stifling hot bear onesie. As the temperature creeps up to more than 40 degrees celsius, things aren’t looking good for Daniel as he loses consciousness inside the car and Sandra must battle through the desert to try and save his life.

The film probably covers a 36-hour time period from start to finish and the ending is fairly predictable.

Katrina Bowden – who also featured in comedy series 30 Rock for seven years as well as films Scary Movie 5 and Piranha 3DD to name just a couple – is far from being an annoying blonde in a mini-skirt with boobs everywhere. Bowden is a pleasantly strong (fully clothed) female lead with no male counterpart in sight.

She is able to switch between being incredibly dislikeable (yes, let’s light up a fag in a car with your asthmatic two-year-old in the back) to a desperate and ultimately heroic mother.

Although the scenery is sand, sand and yet more sand I found the whole desert setting quite appealing and at 83 minutes long Monolith is a comfortable watch, but the scare factor is seriously lacking – another questionable choice for FrightFes. At best it would make it as a thriller, at worst a drama.

Despite the complete lack of other characters Bowden keeps the film ticking on and it’s worth a watch just for her alone.

Mostly what kept me hanging on until the end was to see if or how Sandra managed to get the kid out of the car and where I could buy one (FYI they are not for sale).

Horror Channel Frightfest review: Monolith
3.0Overall Score
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