HomeBlu-ray DiscAustralian Thriller Monolith (2022) Reviewed On Blu-ray Disc

Australian Thriller Monolith (2022) Reviewed On Blu-ray Disc

Monolith Blu-ray slipcover
Monolith (2022) Blu-ray Buy on Amazon

Australian psychological thriller Monolith was released in theaters in 2022 but is just making its way to home media in the US. The film was previously made available in Digital HD in mid-February 2024 and arrives on Blu-ray Disc from Well Go USA on April 23, 2024.

Directed by Matt Vesely and written by Lucy Campbell, Monolith is the first feature film from a joint initiative between the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) and the Adelaide Film Festival (AFF). The film gets its name from the word “monolith” which refers to a single piece of stone. There are other feature films with the same title including a 1993 action movie starring Bill Paxton and a 2016 Italian thriller about an SUV with artificial intelligence. 

Monolith (2022) plays out much like a slow-burn crime podcast. A lot of the time is spent watching The Interviewer (Lily Sullivan) sit at her studio desk while talking to subjects involved in the mysterious phenomenon. Interviewees describe how a strange black brick appeared in, and disrupted their lives. The Interviewer learns each brick has its own unique symbols and history with its owners. 

The movie creeps into sci-fi as the story unfolds, and some of the pacing is reminiscent of Alex Garland’s horror/thriller Annihilation. Dialogue sets the stage for the horror, with occasional establishing shots and flashbacks providing a visual reference. But this movie is probably 95% focused on the main actor Lily Sullivan in her remote modern home, collecting audio content, connecting with her publisher, and researching the brick.

Speaking of visuals, the monolith, or “black brick” as it’s referred to, is reminiscent of the mysteriously-shaped ships that landed on Earth in Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival. There is one shot that makes the monolith appear just as massive as the spacecraft in Arrival, but it serves as more of a psychological illustration rather than an actual object. 

How is the quality of Monolith on Blu-ray? The video displays at 1920×1080 (HD) resolution at 16:9 aspect ratio. The imagery isn’t spectacular, but the Blu-ray does provide quality 8-bit MPEG-4 video averaging about 25.5Mbps. Sharpness holds up well on a 100” projection screen with no breakdown in gradients. This movie is currently not available in 4k.  

The color grading (using the BT.709 color space) is a bit flat with low saturation and colors, sitting somewhere between what you might find in a documentary or low-budget drama. With that said, a movie like Alex Garland’s Ex Machina wasn’t exactly popping off the screen either but served to get its message across. Monolith offers an even more subtle approach to lighting and color luminance, with most values on the darker side of a digital video histogram. In short, you’ll watch this movie for its content and not as home theater reference material.

The soundtrack is provided in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and plays at about 2.2Mbps. Surround effects are minimal, but in the most critical moments fill the sound space enough to elevate the tension. Subtle ambient noises can sometimes be heard in the quiet moments, adding a level of immersion. The music score by Australian musician Benjamin Speed is fitting for anxiety building and revelation. The most prominent audio element in Monolith is certainly the voice of The Interviewer who emanates above other sound elements, effects, and music composition. 

Bonus features on the Blu-ray Disc include writer, producer, and director audio commentaries, behind-the-scenes footage, and the theatrical trailer. 

I’m giving this movie a 3.5/5, video 3/5, and audio 3/5. It’s highly recommended in its genre for the paranoia-induced storyline and science fiction elements. At its core, Monolith is a movie about a misunderstanding that misforms lives, but it’s also about facing truths and the will of one journalist to stick with a story no matter the consequences.

Monolith Blu-ray specs
Monolith (2022) Blu-ray Buy on Amazon
Jeff Chabot
Jeff Chabothttps://hd-report.com
Jeff has a background in photography, video and television production. He writes about technology, broadcasting, home theater, and digital entertainment.

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