A family friendly comedy-horror that tries its best to capture the tone of the successful book series, Goosebumps but is let down by its predictable story and poor performances.

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At the end of the movie R.L Stine (Jack Black), a fictionalised version of real Goosebumps author, makes a speech in which he claims that every story has three components… ‘the beginning, the middle… and the twist’. This is a factor that plays a huge part in the general plots of the book series so including this line makes sense… except for the fact that the film doesn’t have a twist! And this line comes after said twist should have happened.

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The timing of a line such as the one above kind of summed up my experience of watching the film; it felt as if the writer had a list of things and quotes which he wanted to include and then crossed them off one by one. It was so forced and predictable that it sucked the fun from the story.

The story isn’t helped by a group of boring characters which don’t even attempt to have depth… from the wimpy kid to the lonely aunt every stereotype is covered, whilst the films only star name Black is given such a forced role that he resorts to often unfunny voices and reactions in the hope of a laugh.

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I know that Goosebumps is aimed mainly at children and the family market, therefore I am perhaps not the best person to judge it, however when you compare this film to similarly large-scale creature based family films such as Night at The Museum or Jumanji it just doesn’t stand up.

 

5/10