Low-Budget Movies Can Be Awesome

My wife and I watched the sci-fi drama Monsters last night. It was an amazing low-budget flick written and directed by Gareth Edwards, with beautiful cinematography, subtle yet superb special effects, and excellent performances by the mostly unknown leads, Scoot McNairy and Whitney Able. It proves that filmmakers don't need a super-six-figure budget to make a solid motion picture.

The story follows a photojournalist protecting a wealthy tourist as they try to escape a quarantined zone south of the U.S. border that's "infected" with giant aliens. There is tension and emotion in every scene from beginning to end. The relationship between the two main characters, what is said and unsaid, is gripping.

Some other movies of the past that show that miniscule budgets sometimes can equal high quality include Halloween, The Blair Witch Project, Rocky, Napoleon Dynamite, Paranormal Activity, Clerks, American Graffiti, Mad Max, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and Night of the Living Dead.

Gareth Edwards has been hired to make the next big-budget Godzilla movie. Maybe he doesn't need all that money to deliver a terrific production. Hopefully he will stick to the lessons he learned from his independent roots.