Aussie Movie Monolith is Closed Box Brilliance

Aussie Movie Monolith is Closed Box Brilliance
Reader Rating0 Votes

Aussie Movie Monolith is Closed Box Brilliance. Man I love closed box movies. If you are new here, “Closed Box” is my own name for single set, or tightly constrained movies. I even have an enormous list of them, if they are the sorts of movies that you also love. Feel free to read through my Closed Box movie posts right here. I know, that was super nice of me. You are so welcome. And Monolith, the Australian indie’s indie movie – is all about the closed boxness. The film is so claustrophobically set as to wonder just how much more tightly closed boxed would even be possible.

The film was the first full-length film produced by the South Australian Film Corporation and the Adelaide Film Festival. It came from a field of 63 movie entries, and was subsequently whittled down to a final three films. The nearly fifty teams developed their scripts and honed them until only one film remained. The Monolith script then was chosen to go into production and was awarded $400,000 Australian – and then additional $100,000. (Half million Australian is something like 350,000 dollars.) But I’ll be honest with you – I’m wondering very seriously where all that money went! Probably most of it went to the rental of this house. There was like $5,000 in there for one specific special effects shot. But outside of that? There was only one on screen actor – Lily Sullivan, who played the podcaster. So the money wasn’t tied up in talent, that’s for sure. Regardless, it was a really fun ride – I enjoyed the story telling, and the acting was very solid. Great indie mindjob film if that is how you are looking to spend a Friday evening.

But that’s why you visit THiNC. – in order to find out about films you wouldn’t have normally even heard of. (Which, you can rent on Apple TV presently.)

Monolith Movie Walkthrough Chronologically

One of the most interesting details of the Australian movie Monolith is the chronology of this story and how the viewer is required to work in order to make sense of things. Not just sense of the ending, and the mindjob twist, but just the chronology of this story. Worse, our podcaster is a truly unreliable narrator – and she makes things significantly harder to to make sense of. Regardless, I will walk you through this story, and the scraps and details of this movie, as it insinuates its way towards its startling conclusion.

The story is simple enough. Our reporter/podcaster (whom I’ll refer to as the podcaster from here on out) has hidden herself away from the rest of the world. She published a story about a supposedly guilty person, David Langley, but she couldn’t corroborate all of her reporting. And, as such, there was an intense backlash that resulted from her reporting. She hides at her parents home as her house is being staked out by piles of reporters from all the major News Networks in the nation. But as she decides that she needs less rest, and more a new story to report on, she is contacted with a story about a brick. Now, in order to try and make maximal sense of it all, let’s start back over at the beginning of these player’s stories, and see if we can’t reconstruct actually what happened here:

  1. Floramae King works at the house of the Podcaster’s family home.
  2. FK’s daughter, named Paula, discovers a brick on the property with mysteries qualities.
  3. The Podcaster, who is celebrating her birthday, finds the brick and assumes it’s been gifted to her.
  4. Her parents, also sensing the importance of the brick argue with Floramae about the provenance of the brick, and the fact that it was found on their land – so it must be theirs.
  5. The brick affects the Podcaster, and she carves up the furniture… but she says that it was Paula that did it.
  6. The police are called, and Floramae King is charged, and forced to pay for the damages to the property.
  7. She cannot afford the damages, so the family justifies their keeping the brick as payment.
  8. Eventually the family sells the brick to an art dealer.
  9. The Podcaster is contacted by Floramae telling her about a story about a brick – not revealing the depths of their connection together.
  10. The Podcaster chases down Floramae’s story, and the details about a family stealing a brick from her and selling it to an art dealer.
  11. The Podcaster realizes her family’s connection to the larger story, and her own culpability.
  12. The Podcaster even realizes that she framed Paula for the carving up of the furniture – but the Podcaster’s parents wants the truth to be left alone.
  13. The Podcaster regurgitates up a brick, and in a pique of anger, she destroys the brick.
  14. In so doing, she brings about the arrival of her own doppelgänger to the home.
  15. The Podcaster runs from her doppelgänger, and is killed.
  16. The doppelgänger puts rocks in her pockets, and sends her to the bottom of the lake.
  17. The doppelgänger starts creating a new episode of the podcast…
Aussie Movie Monolith is Closed Box Brilliance - a super small indie Aussie film that punches way above its weight.

Theories to explain the Movie Monolith

Personally, I think that Monolith is a pretty straight forward movie, as far as crazy mindjob movies go. The Podcaster is either just on an insane podcasting bender – or she’s been infected by an alien virus. One or the other. Personally, it sort of all adds up to me. But let’s see if we can answer some of the most obviously anticipated questions:

Question 1: What is the Brick?
Answer: It is inferred that the Brick is an alien artifact/virus, intent on spreading through planet earth via word of mouth.

Question 2: What does the Brick do?
Answer: The Brick is a alien concentrate that is intent on spreading like a virus throughout planet earth. Uninfected humans hear about the Brick, and the Brick appears. Once the Brick is broken open, it unleashes the doppelgänger… and the double replaces the original human with their alien double.

Question 3: Is The Podcaster just insane? Or is the Brick really the beginnings of an alien invasion?
Answer: Great question. We know that individuals under the spell of a brick are not to be trusted. Individuals sat and talked at long lengths to people that weren’t there. And we know that The Podcaster has been critically destabilized by the story of The Brick, let alone once she receives one again.

Question 4: Are you certain that The Podcaster died, and it wasn’t the doppelgänger that died?
Answer: No, no I’m not. And anyone that tells you they are certain is lying to you. I tracked frame by frame in an attempt to track who was where, and which one was doing what. And it’s not doable. So we have a very similar problem with the ending of The One I Love, here. But, we do know that the Brick is a virus and it has been successfully spreading in this exact same method.

My Own Theories on Monolith

I’ll do you one better. Not only do I think that the Brick is an alien invasion, it’s probably more engaged in this world and universe than you realize. If you were paying attention, The Podcaster’s parents were probably alien replacements (“Honey, let’s just leave the “truth” alone – leave the past in the past.”), as was the art dealer, and many of the other people that The Podcaster interacted with during the course of her investigation. And the reason that the podcast blew up, was because the alien virus was compelling people to listen, share it, and smash that like button. Do you honestly think that a story about a Brick, from an unknown podcaster, would get 350k listens in the span of hours otherwise? (Behind the curtain, I just started a podcast with my friend Barry from – hopefully we’ll hit 100 listens as we approach our 5th episode! hahaha. We are having a blast doing it though.) Those kinds of listens would DESTROY Serial’s numbers. Anyway, I digress.

So, all that to say, I believe that The Brick has burrowed itself deeply into the world’s population already – and our intrepid Podcaster? She has accelerated that alien take over through her attempts to investigate this phenomenon.

How Do I Rank Monolith?

I’ve begun thinking about movie rankings a little bit differently here on the site now. I am seeing it them on two different Axes. The X axis is enjoyment. How much fun was the movie? And the Y axis? Well, that is the Mindjobby-ness of the movie. The confusing-ness of it. Because I really value movies that make you THiNC., therefore, I rate that independently. So, for Monolith – many people will find it quite boring. But I thought the storytelling was pretty ingeniously compelling. I loved the eeriness of it that left her to herself. Almost became a play of sorts. So, while others might rate it a 4 on a scale of 1-10 on the X, I will give it a 7. And on the scale of mindjobyness? I’ll give it a 7.5 in that it didn’t tie up all its questions, it didn’t try and explain anything, and it also left you thinking about it in the end. Which, is a really decent score for a movie like this one with such a small budget and only a single actor. Hopefully you enjoyed it as well.