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New Goosebumps Movie Delivers Scary Fun

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‘Tis the season to scream.

Everywhere you look, the creepy and the ghoulish are doing their spindly, bloody best to horrify with one oversized spider or lurching zombie at a time. Movie theaters love to pile on the scary fare, too. Usually, they offer plenty for adults to see, leaving kids out of the mix. Not this Halloween. Goosebumps bursts into theaters this Friday, October 16th, just in time for Halloween.

For nearly 25 years, kids have devoured Goosebumps books in astonishing numbers. The man responsible for creating the wildly successful universe of monsters vs. children is R.L. Stine. In a very clever twist, the Goosebumps film asks a question: What if R.L. Stine’s imagination was so powerful, his creations could come to life? This fun premise serves as the springboard for the story. Portrayed by kid-favorite Jack Black, R.L. Stine is a reclusive, mysterious man with a sweet daughter and secrets. What happens when a new kid—with problems of his own—gets nobly nosy?

The Goosebumps movie starts slowly, building suspense at a measured pace. The first twenty minutes feel like a typical teenaged love story. There’s a new boy in town. There’s a girl next door. Cue the magical, romantic locale, the overbearing dad, the kooky aunt, the nerdy wingman. You think you know where it’s heading, but then suddenly a creature literally bursts onto the screen and Madison, Delaware will never be the same again. It’s time to save the town from a villain so detestable, you will want to chop up all the wood in your house lest it be used to ever craft a dummy.

That’s right. I called him a dummy.

Goosebumps_(film)_posterOnce the movie gets going, it doesn’t stop. It’s one shuddery squeal of a good time. The special effects are fantastic and full of surprises. Many of Stine’s biggest and baddest make appearances as part of a nasty, seemingly unstoppable army. You’ve never seen garden gnomes team up with a gym short-sporty werewolf until now. Guaranteed. It’s a mash of monsters.

But can you enjoy the Goosebumps film even if you haven’t read a Goosebumps book? Absolutely. The monsters showcased are familiar to everyone, but fans of the books will catch nods and inside jokes. It’s pure, accessible fun with no prerequisites or required reading.

It’s also intense and truly scary at times. Younger kids might find Goosebumps to be nightmare fodder, which isn’t fun for anyone. Mature tweens and teens who are fans of the books and other scary media will love the fast-paced story with crazy twists and great characters. There are no deaths or gory moments. It’s rated PG and opens everywhere on October 16th, 2015.

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Comments
  • comment avatar Amber Johnson October 15, 2015

    One warning: Avoid Slappy. #dummy

  • comment avatar Amber Johnson October 15, 2015

    As for who should see this, I fretted the entire time that it was too scary for little kids and I wouldn’t recommend it for preschool and younger. That said, there were several young kids at the prescreening who were fine. I guess it depends upon your child.

    My son is 9 and his buddies were the perfect demographic. A few quotes:

    “It was better than Cinderella.” -my son

    “It was the best movie I’ve seen in a looooooong time.” -my son’s buddy Noah

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