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Goosebumps (2015)

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Details: 103 mins

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Inventive and entertaining with Stine's creations.

A Goosebumps movie sounds like it could be a tough concept to execute. How do you take a popular horror book series from the 90s and turn it into a film? Writers Darren Lemke, Scott Alexander, and Larry Karazewski figured it out. You craft a meta adventure that features author R.L. Stine as a character played by Jack Black and transform his stories into real creations that are accidentally unleashed upon an unsuspecting town. The resulting picture is a delightful nostalgic trip for fans of the novels, that also appeals to younger viewers who may be unfamiliar with the series. Goosebumps is cute and silly, the way a movie about this franchise should be for its target audience. Although it does get into corny territory with its main narrative about a new kid in town named Zach (Dylan Minnette) dealing with the loss of his father and his romance with Stine's daughter Hannah (Odeya Rush). Also, it's villain Slappy the Ventriloquist Dummy (voiced by Black) tends to be chees...(more)

A Goosebumps movie sounds like it could be a tough concept to execute. How do you take a popular horror book series from the 90s and turn it into a film? Writers Darren Lemke, Scott Alexander, and Larry Karazewski figured it out. You craft a meta adventure that features author R.L. Stine as a character played by Jack Black and transform his stories into real creations that are accidentally unleashed upon an unsuspecting town. The resulting picture is a delightful nostalgic trip for fans of the novels, that also appeals to younger viewers who may be unfamiliar with the series. Goosebumps is cute and silly, the way a movie about this franchise should be for its target audience. Although it does get into corny territory with its main narrative about a new kid in town named Zach (Dylan Minnette) dealing with the loss of his father and his romance with Stine's daughter Hannah (Odeya Rush). Also, it's villain Slappy the Ventriloquist Dummy (voiced by Black) tends to be cheesy and cartoony in his motivation to live outside the page. Those aspects are a little disappointing, as is a cliché subplot about a fraidy cat friend named Champ (Ryan Lee) who learns to be brave in order to get the girl. Aside from these well-traveled themes, Goosebumps is pretty inventive and entertaining with Stine's creations, but more importantly, it's just fun to watch. If you're older it will make you want to dust off your paperbacks and if you're younger it will make you want to dive into them for the first time. (less)

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gave

Great nostalgia trip

Rollicking suburban adventure film in the vain of The Goonies and Gremlins. For the millennials it plays as a great tribute to Rl Stine and reminds us what a gem of 90s pop culture he gifted to us. It is also a fun introduction for Post-Millenials into his spooky but captivating world (i think a TV series reboot is in check now). Some of the more poignant moments it tries to hit on felt unnecessary and forced but the likable cast make for an easy distraction. Ryan Lee (Champ) is a star in the making brightening up every scene his in with his goofy charm. Overall it is no spectacular achievement but it is nonetheless refreshing to go the cinemas and see a good ole boisterous (mostly live-action) kids film, an unfortunate rarity in this golden age of digital animation.

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gave

Spooky & slappy

Some creative & fun moments, but mostly a run-of-the-mill spooky comedy. Good chemistry between the main characters. If I was thirteen I'd have loved it.

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Plot:

R.L. Stine's creations come to life -- literally -- when his Goosebumps manuscripts are opened. Teens Zach, Hannah, and Champ must help him re-trap hordes of monsters before they wreak havoc on their town.