Movie and Film Reviews (MFR) Comedy,Horror The Monster Squad (1987)

The Monster Squad (1987)

The Monster Squad is a delightfully chesse-tastic horror comedy from the late 1980s. The film is about a group of kids who create a monster club in there backyard tree-house, and then band together to stop actual monsters from destroying the world. Featuring new takes on all the classic Universal creatures, including Dracula, Frankenstein’s monster, Wolfman, Mummy, and the Creature (from the black lagoon), the film is incredibly fun and probably one of the most underrated films from that decade.

The film sets the tone early, chronicling the failures of fabled vampire hunter Van Helsing (Jack Gwillim) to rid the world of Dracula (Duncan Regehr) and his legion of monsters. In this final battle, both Van Helsing’s diary and a mysterious amulet are lost. Whomever holds the amulet will hold the fate of the world in there hands during the next climactic battle…which of course takes place in present day California. As Dracula and the other monsters begin appearing, young Sean (Andre Gower) and his friends begin piecing the clues together, band together to form The Monster Squad, and attempt to stop Dracula.

Charming, funny, and delightfully cheesy, this is a film for those with a strong sense of humor. The film never really takes itself seriously, which is why it works so well, and the performances by the kids are all well done. Filled with great moments like “Fat Kid” (Brent Chalem) kicking Wolfman in the nards and then proclaiming “Wolfman has nards!,” and many other priceless one liners, “I’m in the god-damn club aren’t I?,” the film is never disappointing and always very enjoyable and fun to watch. Other great moments include “There’s a monster inside my closet,” and the revelation that one characters purity might not be so pure. Hilarious moment. The film can also have its tense and scary moments. Look no further than Dracula picking up little Phoebe (Ashley Bank) by her neck and yelling something particulary nasty at her. I won’t spoil it here, but every time I see the film, I’m shocked it got into a family movie.

In particular, the 20th Anniversary DVD released last year (2007), has a great transfir of the film, and great special features. A rather lengthy retrospective is both unexpected, and highly enjoyable, as the (now much) older cast members recount there memories of filming such a cult classic monster flick as kids. Also a good time is spent on remembering Brent Chalem, who tragically died since the film was made, something I know I didn’t know before getting the DVD a year ago. Another good chunk is spent on the performance of Tom Noonan as Frankenstein’s monster, which is unlike any other take on the creature before.

Overall, a top notch DVD, and a very endearing cult classic. A must for any respectable October horror movie marathon.

1 thought on “The Monster Squad (1987)”

  1. I love this movie the goonies met the classic monsters of horror it’s slimple a fun entertaining movie with great makeup(the brides of Drucula mostly) and the movie does a great job at getting the audience to root for Frankinstein. I agree the film is a nice break in the middle of a horror movie fest. Nice review.

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