Director: Rob Letterman
Writers: Darren Lemke, Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski, R.L. Stine
Voice Cast: Jack Black
Cast: Jack Black, Dylan Minnette, Odeya Rush, Ryan Lee, Amy Ryan, Jillian Bell, Halston Sage, Ken Marino, Steven Krueger, Keith Arthur Bolden, Amanda Lund, Timothy Simons, Karan Soni, R.L. Stine, Caleb Emery
Synopsis: A teenager teams up with the daughter of young adult horror author R. L. Stine after the writer's imaginary demons are set free on the town of Madison, Delaware.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for scary and intense creature action and images, and for some rude humor
Stevennix2001's Rating and Summary for those that want to skip the review
7.5 / 10
- Special effects were great
- Cinematography and sound effects were spot on
- If you can afford to see this in 3-D, then it's definitely worth it.
- Acting was serviceable.
- Jack Black was funny, even though he was basically playing himself again in all three of his parts.
- Interesting premise about R.L. Stine's book series being real.
- Jokes were funny.
- Nicely paced, and cleverly written story.
- While the story isn't that bad, it's still a fairly generic predictable family teen film, where you already know what's going to happen after the first twenty minutes or so.
A nice Halloween monster film for the family and kids to enjoy
If anyone remembers the eighties cult classic, "Monster Squad", then try to imagine a more family friendly version of that film. One that doesn't have curse words, gore or any of the senseless violence towards monsters and kids.
No kids playing with guns, or anything that would piss off soccer moms in today's PC era. Nope. Just a good old clean monster film, where all these mysterious fictional creatures team up to take over a small town. If you can imagine that, then you should have a general idea of what "Goosebumps" is like.
Unlike anything you'd might expect from a film adaptation, "Goosebumps" isn't necessarily a direct adaptation of any of R.L. Stine's previous works. No, it basically presents the idea that everything within the "Goosebumps" stories are real, and R.L. Stine (Jack Black) allegedly keeps these monsters at bay, by keeping them locked up in his "Goosebumps" manuscripts.
The film follows a young boy named Zach (Dylan Minnette), who recently moves to a small town with his mom, where she becomes the vice principal at his high school. He befriends a shy socially awkward nerdy kid by the name of Champ (Ryan Lee). Yes, that's seriously his name folks. Of course, he also meets a girl at his school named Hannah (Odeya Rush), who coincidentally lives next door to him, and she happens to be R.L. Stine's daughter. Or is she?
To make a long story short, Zach and Champ somehow misinterpret a situation over at Hannah's house, and it inevitably leads to a chain of events that unleash all of Stine's monsters. Now, they're free to run amok. To make matters worse, one of Stine's worse creations, Slappy (voiced by Jack Black), feels betrayed after being locked up for all those years, as he immediately vows revenge upon Stine and the town for his misgivings.
And to top it all off, Stine has no way to put the monsters back into their manuscripts because Slappy and the other monsters have burned them all. With little time left, the only hope that our heroes have is to try to lead everyone to safety, while Stine writes a new novel featuring all the "Goosebumps" monsters he's ever created, so he can lock them up forever again. Will they succeed? Or will they fail? Will Zach ever kiss Hannah? Does Hannah have a secret to hide? Will Champ ever man up and finally get a girl for himself? Stay tuned and find out.
While I'll be the first to admit that "Goosebumps" can be a bit corny and downright predictable at times, I have to say that it's actually a lot of fun to watch. The film never takes itself too seriously, which leads to a lot of comical "tongue in cheek" moments that you can't help but enjoy.
While the acting isn't anything Oscar worthy, it's serviceable for the most part. Jack Black is hilarious as always, even though he's basically playing himself again in this movie. However, "Goosebumps" is just a fun film that offers plenty of laughs, and quite a bit of fun and adventure along the way.
Is it predictable as hell? You bet your sweet a** it is, but it's more about the journey than the actual destination, when it comes to these types of generic family fun adventure fantasy comedies.
Overall, I wouldn't go out of my way to say "Goosebumps" is the best Halloween themed film that I've ever seen, nor would I even say it's the best monster movie of all time either. However, it's a fairly decent family film that offers plenty of laughs, which shouldn't be too scary for the kiddies to watch with their parents. It's definitely worth checking out if you want to watch a monster movie that's suitable for the family around Halloween night, or any night for that matter.
© 2015 Steven Daniels