Monster (2024) review: Dialogue-free thriller struggles to speak

Monster, a remake of the US thriller The Boy Behind the Door, follows two young schoolchildren, Alana and Rabin, who are kidnapped by a sinister man named Jack. The children face a horrific ordeal, trying to escape a dangerous home that hints at heinous crimes.


Monster opens at a school, where friends Alana and Rabin are seen being followed by a car while riding a bicycle.

They are eventually kidnapped by a mysterious man named Jack and taken to a secluded location.

As Jack locks Rabin inside a room, Alana is left in his car’s trunk.

Fortunately, she manages to escape and tries to find ways to distract her captor and save her friend without getting caught again.


Anantya Kirana, who plays Alana, stands out with her courageous performance.

The young actors deserve applause for their ability to convey emotions and drive the narrative without uttering a single word.

Coordinating such performances is a testament to the director Rako Prijanto’s skill.

The rest of the cast including Alex Abbad, Marsha Timothy and Sulthan Hamonangan are decent with what they are given.

However, since they barely speak and are mostly involved in physical stuff, it is hard to judge their performances as a whole.


Prijanto maximizes Monster’s single location, creating a claustrophobic atmosphere. The film manages to generate suspense through clever shots and angles.

Monster tackles the horrifying concept of child abduction and the broader criminal schemes behind it.

The film’s real horror lies in the natural attachment viewers develop to the children and their survival.

Furthermore, choosing the minimal dialogue route shifts the emphasis to visuals and sound and adds to the thrill.


The film’s execution feels disjointed at times. Some scenes appear oddly shot, possibly due to budget constraints or editing choices.

It also struggles to maintain tension and often feels mired in its own repetitiveness.

The narrative also suffers from some jarring plot holes.

After Jack locks up Rabin, he completely forgets about Alana being in the car’s trunk and goes about his business.

Even when he suspects something is wrong, he never goes to check the car.

Also, when Alana calls the cops, she has no way of knowing where she is but still manages to convey her location to them.

There is no depth to the villains as no motive or backstory is explained.


Monster is an ambitious and admirable effort, but it falls short of its potential.

The lack of dialogue is a bold choice that ultimately makes the film more intense, but it also highlights the film’s weaknesses.

The ending, while satisfactory in terms of the children’s survival, leaves many questions unanswered, leaving the viewers to fill in the gaps with their imagination.

Monster (2024) review: Dialogue-free thriller struggles to speak 1

Director: Rako Prijanto

Date Created: 2024-05-17 14:24

Editor's Rating:

Also Read: Bridgerton season 3 part 1 review: Charming and comforting friends-to-lovers tale

More from The Envoy Web