Movie of the Day – The Monster Squad
July 22, 2011 2 Comments
There were three movies from the 80′s that made me who I am today. First was The Wizard and the fact that I like to game, also it helped that I am a boy and video games are ingrained in my DNA coding. Second, The Goonies was more or less a pivotal coming of age story to me. A band of misfit kids going on an adventure, getting shot at, discovering a lost pirate ship, all without the supervision of adults. The last movie did more than define me a man, it prepared me for life. A life in which vampires, mummies, creature from some sort of Black Lagoon, and Werewolves were real and can be defeated. No longer did I need to fear these obviously fictitious creatures, but rather I use this as a holy bible to defeat mythological creatures. Also it taught me the word “nards” to mean balls. I really wish people would use “nards” again. The Monster Squad takes me back, like a young college student looking back on their posted Facebook pictures from some drunken night, I look back on this movie with great fondness and befuddlement. Seriously, where the fuck were all the parents in every single one of these kid movies. Kidding me that they can battle the undead and monsters without mom or dad asking questions. The 80s were a weird time.
A group of adolescent monster movie enthusiasts form a club that meets in a treehouse in this pre-teen horror feature. When Dracula, The Mummy, Frankenstein, and The Wolfman are joined by Gill-Man in the search for a magic amulet, the boys form the Monster Squad to battle the forces of evil. The boys get unexpected help from Frankenstein when the monster grows tired of being continually bossed around by Dracula. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi
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I decided to let the peeps at Rovi field the synopsis for me since all I want to do is talk about how badass this movie is. I look back at this movie and even today I am still giddy like a kid whenever I see it on TV or just want to watch it on DVD. It’s kind of a rare gem of a movie that only the 80s was able to produce. You took the concept of all those timeless, black and white monster classics and pile them into a movie where you have a group of Goonie like kids try and unravel the secret to their existence and kill them. While I am a young person, I never got to enjoy the classic Universal Monsters that this movie brought together. Each monster has a rich history in terms of cinema and fandom. But while I only know of these monster and their history in passing, seeing them in a movie was some scary shit. For a sort of kids film, this is a violent and scary movie. The mummy and werewolf makeup was awesome, but little did I know that Stan Winston (the man behind some of the best special effects in the world) was doing all the makeup and effects. That just added more to the realism of the movie and it sticks with you all this time.
As an adult looking back on this movie, I can see why I have a fondness for this movie. It is genuinely frightening and from the teen adventure angle, this is more of a grown up movie. It’s incredibly violent when you get down to the final scenes of the movie. You got the Wolfman just mowing through the town cops. Dracula is doing his thing and the sea monster dude is crushing some guys head and then going after the kids. Aside from the violence, the movie does this wonderful job of taking standard monster movie tropes and kids fears into play. Scenes where monsters are literally in the closet take places, you have the kid befriending Frankenstein, the creepy old guy that turns out to be a great ally and so much more. It also takes some liberties and pokes fun at the monsters in how each are dispatched over the course of the movie. Why not just unravel the mummy and kill it? Fucking kick the wolfman in the nards.
The Monster Squad is cult classic and a solid B-Movie. The reason is that they looked to those cult classics before it and took elements of each monster and movie, smashed it together and embraced the carnage that they have unleashed. It’s a fun movie to watch at any age. Find me one movie where you get monsters, virgin jokes, the older brother from the Wonder Years, and the baddest mother fucker alive, Horace all in one movie. None I tell you! Did I mention that it also has a sweet montage of the kids gearing up to kill the monsters? No of course not cause it’s the 80s and you know there is a montage already in the movie before you have even seen it.
This is not available on Netflix Instant Stream, but don’t sit around and wait for it to be added to the library, queue that shit up unless you are one of the millions of whiners that complained about Netflix’s price increase. First World Problems I tellyou.