The Monster Squad - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Monster Squad Reviews

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Super Reviewer
July 24, 2011
Bunch of savvy kids that have their own secret club, a neat treehouse base and end up on a spooky adventure trying to stop supernatural could say this has a 'Goonie' influence. Hell the young boys even have a fat kid amongst their ranks and he wears loud brightly coloured shirts too.

The plot is hammy as hell but it is suppose to be a homage and twist on the classic B-movie horror genre and of course Universal horror monsters. Putting all the big name supernatural beings together and sticking them in the 80's (present day back then). All the classic monsters including Dracula, Frankenstein's monster, Gill-man, the Wolf Man and The Mummy teaming up to try and take over the world with a supernatural amulet, only the kids can stop them. The only way they can be stopped is to open a portal into limbo and kick them through...this whole idea visually looks identical to the portal sequences in the 'Evil Dead' franchise.

So the whole thing is really cheesy and silly as it is suppose to be a kids flick, but it is??. There is actually some quite edgy scenes in the film with visible blood and body parts! when Wolf Man gets blown into pieces for example, nothing much hidden. Some scenes are also a bit scary for the younger viewer in my opinion. Again Wolf Man attacking people and transforming in classic 'American Werewolf' style, stakes through various hearts with blood, Dracula trying to actually kill the kids and the makeup doesn't skimp with realism.

The monsters all look as they should in classic style but they certainly aren't tame by any means. Wolf Man has a much wilder vicious look which is pretty scary, Gill-man is the best if you ask me, he looks terrific, whilst Frankie is as expected as is The Mummy. Its only Dracula who doesn't really thrill, the casting seems a bit off to me, the guy in the role just doesn't look right, he's too young and 'modern' looking if you get me. There are also Dracula's vampiresses who look as you would expect but they have no purpose in the film, kinda under used idea really, clearly crammed in.

Naturally there are plot issues a plenty which don't really matter but they do stick out. Why exactly does Dracula have Frankie in the first place?. Where did Dracula get that big black slick custom hearse?? he's only been in the US about one day! and how did he get a hold of that big mansion? is it his??. The most obvious to me was why exactly Gill-man, The Wolf Man and The Mummy all joined Dracula in the first place, they all just appeared and teamed up. So before hand what exactly did Gill-man do? he just like...lived in the swamp? how did he and The Mummy know Dracula had arrived in the region? I'm guessing it was his supernatural powers. None of the monsters have any real backstory, it all just happens.

The silliest of all was in the finale when Van Helsing appears from the portal to drag Dracula through it. But if Helsing was in limbo how did he get out to do that? and wouldn't he wanna try and stay in the real world once getting out?! I'm pretty sure it wasn't easy.

Its certainly a strange beast this film, its hardly for kids with the blood, monsters and Dracula going around snapping cops necks, yet it is aimed at kids with the young 'Goonie-esque' line up. The young cast are good but the whole time you can't help but think they really wanted Corey Feldman, Haim and Astin in the main roles. Pretty much cast everyone from 'The Goonies' in this and while you're at it call it Goonies 2. End of the day the film was just an excuse to bring back all the classic B-movie monsters and have them looking top dollar with modern makeup (for the time of course). And it works plain and simple, the plot is daft with many holes but it doesn't really matter, its a flick for ghoulish monster lovers with a touch of Indy adventure for good measure.
Super Reviewer
½ April 22, 2013
Fred Dekker who previously directed Night of the Creeps delivers yet another slap of original horror with The Monster Squad. Dekker crafts a fun, and entertaining picture that will surly delight the most demanding genre fan. Although not on par with Dekker's previous work, this is still an enjoyable film that has a great cast and a fun story that is entertaining from start to finish. Some people have said this was a horror comedy version of The Goonies, but I think it's quite different. The Monster Squad has its flaws, but it works well enough to keep you interested. The cast do a good job with the material, and they keep it engaging and fun despite occasionally being imperfect. This is a pretty good idea for a horror comedy, and it is among the best of the genre. Fred Dekker crafts a worthy follow up that is funny and bizarre, but constantly riveting despite its imperfections. The monsters are wicked, the effects are well done, and the characters are likeable. If you love these types of films, then you'll surely enjoy it. The story itself is what keeps you involved in the film, and the result is a fun movie that will certainly delight genre fans. I don't see why this one got so much flack as it is an original gem of a horror comedy that has plenty of memorable moments for its short run time. Sure there co0uld have been changes in a few areas, but overall this is a worthwhile film that demands to be seen if you enjoy horror comedies. Fred Dekker has made a fun and whimsical picture that delivers unique thrills. Sadly, this would be his last great movie as he would go on to helm the third part in the Robocop trilogy, which is horrible film, and Dekker would never stand behind a camera again. Who knows how many other horror gems he could have made.
Super Reviewer
½ November 29, 2012
Silly-fun kiddie adventure that I don't remember much of. The little girl reciting German at the end was impressive.
michael e.
Super Reviewer
½ September 7, 2011
Prior to the 1980s the classical Universal monsters hadn't appeared in any color films or all together in one film for over 40 years, so when they did a film like the goonies but with the universal monsters, you can bet that it was awesome. The effects are top notch in the film, the acting is great, the comedy is great, and it has some very good characters. By all definition this is one of the quintessential films to watch on Halloween, because it has everything that you would want in a Halloween film, Comedy, Good effects, Horror, Monsters, Shootouts, supernatural beings, it has something for everyone.
Super Reviewer
½ June 12, 2010
This is a pure 80s premise and practically every monster loverā??s wet dream when they were 12 years old. It takes all the classic Universal properties and throws them into one movie; which actually turns out pretty well. Sure itā??s politically incorrect, illogical and cheesy, but itā??s so much fun that those things just sort of work. This is a world in which middle schoolers chain smoke and Dracula calls a 4 year old girl a bitch. The Stan Winston effects are great and the story is so original and entertaining that you canā??t help but love it.
Super Reviewer
½ June 13, 2008
I'm not sure how I went 20 years without seeing this one. I only thought to watch it now because I just found out it was (co-)written by Shane Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Last Boyscout, Lethal Weapon). It seems like just the kind of thing I would have loved as a kid. As it is, though, seeing it for the first time at this age, it's a fun kid flick, but nothing more. There's some bad acting - some REALLY bad acting, but who cares in something like this, right? It's just cheesy, mindless, (very) 80's fun. Unfortunately, it's not even very good by 80's cheese standards... and it loses some additional points for shamelessly imitating Goonies and also E.T. in several scenes.
Super Reviewer
½ November 15, 2006
Eugene: Creature stole my Twinkie!

Somehow I missed this movie as a child, but its quite enjoyable. A mix of the Goonies with the old Hammer Horror features. It has a mix of 80s cheese, some clever screenplay moments, decent effects for the type of movie this is, and a non-serious sense of fun that holds throughout.

A group of friends, who are obsessed with monsters, have their own club. They find more than they bargain for when a plane containing (here it comes) Dracula, Frankenstein, the Wolfman, the Mummy, and the Creature from the Black Lagoon dumps the cargo into their suburban town. For various reasons, the young boys learn that they only have a day to find an ancient amulet and send the evil creatures to another world..

Patrick: Rudy, where you going?
Rudy: [pulling out crossbow] I'm in the goddamn club aren't I ?

This is just a fun movie. Its goofy, cheesy, and full of 80s kid adventure cliches, but its really enjoyable. Co-scripted by future Lethal Weapon and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang writer Shane Black, the interaction between the adults and the kids certainly has some of those elements that ring familiar.

The elements involving the monsters is very goofy, although Dracula is pretty solid, despite being the only one who seems to want to try and Frankenstien always works when portrayed as misunderstood.

Goofy fun.

Detective Sapir: That's it, Del. This case is too hard, man, Let's be firemen instead.
Det. Del Crenshaw: I'm glad you're gettin' major laughs outta this, Rich. The problem is two-thousand year-old dead guys do not get up and walk away by themselves.
Super Reviewer
December 31, 2008
Directed by the same guy who helmed the intolerable Night of the Creeps, this is about five times as clever and entertaining, with some eminently quotable lines. I intend to use "Wolfman's got nards!" in school, my personal life, and at the workplace. Overall, though, the movie is formulaic 80s pap and your life will proceed with considerable richness if you skip out on it.
Super Reviewer
November 30, 2008
Corny and silly in the extreme, but really, really funny, and just fun in general. It's a really quotable film too, which is another plus. This film could never be anythingmore prestigious than a cult classic, but that's not a bad thing.
Super Reviewer
½ January 25, 2007
"wolfman's got nards".
I grew up on this flick, having seen it some 15 times. it may not be great, but i love it.
Super Reviewer
June 21, 2008
Movie was was co-written by the usually funny Shane Black, who must have had an off day when he wrote this stale re-shash of "The Goonies."
Super Reviewer
January 24, 2007
Another guilty pleasure, Fred Dekker's film is a fun and scary ride.
Super Reviewer
February 2, 2008
Only a 5 because it is a childhood fave. And technically, it is flawless in script, acting, cinematography, effects. It's a SMASH A MONSTARRRRR BASH!!
Super Reviewer
½ November 2, 2007
A classic of my time. A club of kids get together to defeat the classic movie monsters. It was silly but fun.
Super Reviewer
½ August 28, 2006
I had forgotten how vulgar and how short this film was. Lots of fun, and the new DVD is spiffy with extras!
Super Reviewer
July 9, 2007
Wolfman's got nards
Super Reviewer
½ March 20, 2007
Cool funny and scary of a group of kids form a club to help combat an infiltration of monsters in their town. What a clever mixture of Hollywood sci-fi monster effects and a well-conceived spoof of horror movies, past and present.
Super Reviewer
½ December 12, 2007
Aimed at the crowd that is just a little older than the audience for The Goonies. A club is formed of kids who are fans of classic monster movies, and of course most of these kids are too cool for school. It gets some things right about the monster mythology based on the Universal franchises such as: the Wolfman wanting to turn himself in to avoid becoming a murdering beast, and Frankenstein's monster befriending the youngsters since he is a relative newborn himself. Seeing this for the first time in my 30s I did not enjoy the comic aspects, the performances of most of the kids, or this bland version of Dracula. The makeup and costumes for the other monsters were impressive, however. I especially thought the look of the Gillman was a great variation on the original.
Super Reviewer
October 28, 2007
Back in the late 80s, Sean (Andre Gower) and his friends were middle school kids with a fascination for monsters. Their love of old fashioned Horror ran so deep that they started a club in their tree house, calling themselves, The Monster Squad. Everything is just child's play until one day, real monsters start showing up in their small New England town, and it's up to the Monster Squad to stop them. When this film came out, not many people took notice of it, it wasn't until Lionsgate bought the rights and re-issued it. that Monster Squad became somewhat of a cult classic. This film is pure 80s, a time when kids were actually played by kids. Today, we're so afraid of traumatizing these kids, that we have 16-19 year old teens playing much younger kids. Back in the 80s, when the part called for a kid, they found a kid, and being that this was the first film for the vast majority of them, the amount of energy and excitement they brought to the film really kept it going, in what is otherwise a ridiculous story. The actors were the age of the characters they were playing and when they cursed or talked about adult themes, I found it hilarious, it was so much better because it was real. The story isn't anything to write home about, just a bunch of cheesy lines and bad special effects, and I'm sure you could figure out what's going to happen from the description on the box, but to me the best part of the film is the realism given by the cast in a movie that was anything but real. The dynamic between brother and sister, the kids who actually did something imaginative, instead of just playing video games all day. It isn't until you see a film like this that you realize just how much family films have changed. This would be a great film for kids to watch, but if it came out today, the kids would be played by college students and it would get an R rating for some of the language. In the 80s, this would have been the textbook definition of a family film, by today's standard's, it's rating has been upgraded to PG-13 and it's filed under Horror. The more things change, the more they stay the same, what was unacceptable in the 60s and family friendly in the 80s, is now not suitable for children under 13, a sign of the paranoia of the times we live in.
Super Reviewer
½ September 15, 2011
Funny and Entertaining, but that's pretty much the only positive things I could say about this low budget horror flick.
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