Monster is one of the AFI’s 10 best movies for 2003.
I hadn’t seen it before, and all I knew was that it was based on a true story, Charlize Theron underwent a huge opposite-of-makeover to play a prostitute and serial killer and that Christina Ricci was her girlfriend.
Charlize Theron did an amazing job as Aileen Wuornos (said prostitute and serial killer). This isn’t an easy movie to watch because Aileen is this incredibly beaten down person who loses what little sanity she has left over the course of the movie. She falls incredibly hard for Selby Wall (that’s Christina Ricci) even though Selby is really pretty much awful.
And while yes, you can make the case that a prostitute is not what one would consider “a catch,” Aileen tries to quit hooking and get a real job. And instead of being supportive and encouraging her to not give up (or to take a few college classes to look more attractive to potential employers or, at the very least, work on her anger issues), Selby’s like, “I don’t get why you want to quit hooking. It’s good money and you said you’d take care of me.”
And Aileen (who has already killed one person in self-defense) goes back to being a prostitute and starts to imagine that all the guys are complete scum (not just because they’re paying for sex; she thinks one guy is a pedophile) and so she begins to kill them, rob them and steal their cars.
Not surprisingly, that doesn’t last for too long.
This is a very good and very grim movie. I’m glad I saw it (primarily because Charlize Theron does an amazing job)…but it isn’t something I’m likely to watch over and over.