Goosebumps is a 2015 American horror comedy film based on the children's book series of the same name by R.L. Stine. It was directed by Rob Letterman and written by Darren Lemke, from a story by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski. The film stars Jack Black (in a triple role), Dylan Minnette, Odeya Rush, Amy Ryan, Ryan Lee, Jillian Bell, and Halston Sage. It was financed by Sony, LStar Capital, and Village Roadshow Pictures, and also produced by Sony Pictures Animation, Original Film, and Scholastic Entertainment.
A teenager teams up with the daughter of young adult horror author R. L. Stine after the writer's imaginary demons are set free on the town of Madison, Delaware.
Why It Rocks
- It really captures the spark that R.L. Stine’s book franchise had.
- Decent casting choices, especially Jack Black playing R.L. Stine and Slappy The Dummy.
- Wonderful acts and performances.
- The idea of making all the monsters from the Goosebump’s books come to life and go on a town rampage is pretty clever and original.
- Likable, interesting and relatable characters.
- Some funny and touching moments here and there.
- Zach’s story about his father dying is very sad and emotional.
- The actual R.L. Stine makes a cameo appearance towards the end of the film.
- Well-done plot and character development.
- Top-notch special effects.
- An unpredictable twist ending that leaves it open for a sequel.
- Zach and Hanna have a very loving and romantic relationship.
- Funny lines of dialogue that are well-said by the main characters.
- The story feels like a Jumanji cash-in.
- R.L. Stine can be very mean-spirited in the first half of the film.
- Not for easily frightened children.
- Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween, while a pretty okay sequel, mainly just recycles most elements from the first film.
- It also reveals a massive plot-hole of the first film whereas it reveals Slappy the Dummy has supernatural powers.
While the film was well received by fans of the Goosebumps series, critical reception was mixed. On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 76% based on 152 reviews, with an average rating of 6.3/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Goosebumps boasts more than enough of its spooky source material's kid-friendly charm to make up for some slightly scattershot humor and a hurried pace." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 60 out of 100 based on 29 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A" on an A+ to F scale.
Kevin P. Sullivan of Entertainment Weekly gave the film a B rating, citing at the end of his review: "Nothing about Goosebumps is revolutionary—at a certain point you may realize that it's as if Nickelodeon produced Cabin in the Woods—but it's a never-boring trip to a world, where stories and imagination are powerful tools, that just might inspire kids to do the scariest thing of all: pick up a book".