"Dystopic Regime Brutally Attacks Siblings"
What You Need To Know:
WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? creatively takes on the issues of population control and extreme environmentalism, but the story never lands on one side of the crucial right to life issue. The movie addresses some of the ethical questions encountered when science and philosophy collide, but sadly inserts a large amount of foul language, scenes of extreme violence, and a pornographic sex scene. WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? could have gone in a more positive direction, but its negative content will turn off media-wise TV viewers.
(PaPa, BB, C, HH, ACAC, EE, LLL, VVV, SSS, NN, AA, DD, MMM) Mixed worldview showing family members fighting against a totalitarian regime with a one-child policy because of alleged overpopulation, but movie vacillates when it comes to the issues, including the value of human life; at least 51 obscenities (about 32 “f” words) and eight profanities, vomiting and mentioning same, woman who sits with hand inside front of her pants, crude mentions of animal genitalia, crude reference to eating intestinal worms, belching; multiple scenes of extreme violence, including dismembered body parts, live incinerations, scary “surgery” on children while they are awake (but with “good intentions”), various gory/bloody wounds, close-range gun shots, stabbings, using everyday objects as weapons, several scenes of choking people (with hands or with objects), clubbing a government agent with a bottle (for a righteous cause), car chases, knives used in scary scenes, people/bodies falling and leaping from tall buildings, shooting into a residence, portraying a simple and deadly explosion using common household items, family members physically brawl in restroom; very graphic fornication and oral sex scene between unmarried man and woman, implied sadomasochism, briefly mentioning sadomasochist act over phone,, implied innuendo regarding a strip search; upper male and female nudity, lower rear male nudity; implied drunkenness, drinking liquor at a bar and at homes; brief smoking, eating a “pot brownie”; and, government abductions, dysfunctional family portrayals, moral relativism, government’s propagandistic portrayals of “caring” for children by putting them into a coma-like state while aggressively pursuing and terminating people whom the regime devalues, telling a character that their life has negative value, child sneaks out of house, sibling rivalry and bitterness becomes fuel for severe revenge, taking a child from a brother and their mother, lying to a government official, lying to a child, skinned rat used as food, siblings are called “afterbirth,” stealing a large sum of money (with “good” intentions), and movie has an unclear stance on the value of life.
WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? is a futuristic, dystopian movie about seven sisters who try to fend for their lives when a totalitarian regime finds out they’ve escaped their one-child policy. WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? creatively takes on the important issues of population control and extreme environmentalism, but has an unclear stance om the value of life and sadly inserts a large amount of foul language, extreme violence and a pornographic sex scene.
The movie is set around the year 2070. The world is woefully overpopulated, so experiences a massive food crisis, but women begin having multiple-birth pregnancies. Dr. Nicolette Cayman, an environmental activist and biologist, offers a plan: cryogenically freezing siblings and prompting a one-child policy.
The government’s new “Child Allocation Bureau,” or C.A.B., bears the motto, “One Child, One Earth.” Though the C.A.B.’s work is heart-wrenching, the agents feel it’s necessary. The agents round up siblings, holding them in detention centers. The bureau’s propaganda says these children will go into a deep sleep “free from hunger, safe from harm,” and that this is a good, temporary fix “until a better day” comes along.
Meanwhile, Terrence Settman becomes a grandfather to septuplet girls. With the cooperation of the hospital staff, Terrance decides to secretly protect the newborns, whose mother died at birth. Since there’s seven, he simply names them after the days of the week.
Terrance raises the girls as his own, keeping them hidden in an old, top-floor apartment. He is their sole home-school teacher, surrounding them with books and everything they need. He imparts wisdom so they can survive, saying they must work collectively because they are better together than apart. He also builds a secret hiding place the girls can run to if they are ever outed.
When they’re around 8-years-old, he announces they can go outside on the day that coordinates with their name. At home, they can be themselves, but in the outside world, they must dress and act the same, sharing an identity called, “Karen Settman.” Terrance makes them each a high-tech bracelet that will pass them through checkpoints, allow them to buy and sell, and permit them to record and share their days with each other.
As adults, the sisters are still living a secret existence. However, by age 30, they’re growing weary of their strange, cloistered life. One day, one of the sisters doesn’t return home from work. The others become very scared, and rightly so. The C.A.B. is quietly onto them and will start to violently enact vengeance.
From that moment, the audience is left to see whether or not the sisters will be able to survive the truly merciless C.A.B.
WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? explores topics of possible overpopulation, environmental concerns and the value of human life. Unfortunately, it often vacillates and is, up until the end, self-contradictory. It never completely sides with life, though it often pulls the viewer’s heartstrings in that direction.
The importance of family is an appreciable theme that pops up in various ways: Terrence Settman works hard to protect the girls as he teaches and sacrifices for them. The name, Karen, was actually the girls’ mother’s name. The sisters’ concern for one another runs very deep. Friday refers to her crazy and dysfunctional family, saying she “needed it to survive. . . I couldn’t make it without you guys.”
Another reality that subtly reflects a Christian worldview is that each sister is a unique individual (see Psalm 139). Actress Noomi Rapace does a good job giving each septuplet their own, slightly different personality.
The theme of individual life is countered with multiple, unique deaths. Though their government is invested in the belief that people’s individual lives don’t matter, each Settman (for the most part) fights tooth and nail to live. “I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die,” says Sunday after a shooting.
The self-contradictory nature of WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY is not always immoral, but revealing, cautionary and ironic. At one point, someone tells a group their future children would “never know the world that could be built together” under a one-child policy. The person doesn’t realize realizing the hole in their statement, namely that all the siblings who wouldn’t be allowed to live would never know life at all, and the world would never be able to know these children, either, so the word “together,” loses its strength.
The story’s contradictory nature relative to overpopulation, and the value of life and death, is wrapped up in statements by Sunday, who is, as one sister says, “supposed to be the believer.” Sadly, Sunday says, “I don’t know what I believe,” reflecting the moral, spiritual and political waffling of many people in real life today, both in general and on the specific topics raised by the filmmakers of WHAT HAPPENED TO MONDAY? Sadly, the movie inserts a large amount of foul language, extreme violence, a pornograaphic sex scene, and an environmentalist worldview promoting false notions about the possibility of overpopulation while waffling over the issue of whether a one-child policy is good or bad.