There are no monsters in The Signal. There’s just us.
As zombies have come back into vogue, it’s become standard in movies to develop a new angle (“What if zombies were fast?”, etc.). When The Signal started off by infecting an entire city via a bizarre transmission through the TV, radio, and telephones, I thought, “OK, cute twist, being made zombies by our own technology.”
Then, ten minutes later I found myself quite proud of the movie for not using this as an explanation for zombies, but rather for a violent mass psychosis. This is different. As one character explains it:
“People going crazy in their head all over. At first, it’s just murder. The crazy, you know, kill anybody, everybody, each other, indiscriminate. It looks like chaos. But then I realize they’re thinking. Then I get really scared because it’s rational. They know what they’re doing. I mean, they think it makes sense, but it doesn’t make any sense. It’s different for everybody. Let me tell you, they are going to fucking murder the world.”
Suddenly we realize we’re not watching a “survive against monsters” movie. We’re watching what happens when everyone goes mad at the same time.