- Oct. 16th, 2015
- 103 Minutes
The thought of Goosebumps movie starring Jack Black was met with many varied opinions when news had hit a while back, not only based on the casting decision but the fact of having a huge series of books with no connection being thrown into one film left fans worried. Upon release though I feel like everyone should be pleasantly surprised.
The story follows Zach, a teenage boy moving to a new small town with his mother who was hired as the high school principle. Soon though upon meeting the new girl next door and her odd overly protective dad he begins to think that something is wrong and upon breaking in with a new friend of his discover a room full of locked books. Accidentally unlocking one however he soon realizes that once opened the monsters from the Goosebumps book comes to life. Now with all the books being opened and destroyed by ringleader Slappy The Dummy, Zach, his new friends, and none other then the author himself RL Stine must figure out a way to capture the monsters and bring them back into the books.
Goosebumps keep the complex story at a minimum with the main premise of monsters destroying the city being the main focus, it does however throw in subplots of love, dealing with the death of a family member, friendship. being an outcast and standing up for your actions. Unlike most children’s film that attempt to incorporate these views though I found them to actually work well for Goosebumps. Especially the love angle and being alone angles that are dealt with in the final act come across as genuine and actually manage to hit your emotions.
As for the monsters themselves the CGI in this film is quite incredible in bringing these beloved monsters to life. While of course everyone will wish their favorite one had more screen time, Goosebumps does manage to showcase a wide range of them. Making Slappy the leader of them was a wise move as well and anytime Slappy on screen brings a mix of comedy and horror that works great.
Jack Black as RL Stine works out a lot better then expected. Black plays a much more over the top and eccentric version of how Stine actually is. The side roles for the children are good enough to not worry about but Jack Black (and the monsters) steal the show.
Overall Goosebumps is a extremely enjoyable family friendly monster film. It does the Goosebumps name justice and hopefully kicks off a series of films like this.