Friday, 3 February 2012

It mocks us with its... *house-ness*!

Monster House (2006)

Ah 2006 - three years before I would become obsessed with a teevee show called Community, we had this interesting little rascal.

Monster House is a fun throwback to the Zemeckis/Spielberg films of the 80's.
A trio of kids realise that the house across the street is haunted and has begun eating people, the adults, naturally, don't take heed.
It has the simple plot mechanics of a film for the youngsters but layers in some neat observational humour and has a darker (though not Gremlins dark, say,) edge to it than most animated movies of it's ilk. Also there are no cute/annoying anthropomorphic animals with sassy catchphrases which puts it above alot of this years cartoon feature efforts.
The animation is crisp and conveys character really well, with solid voice work from Steve Buscemi, Maggie Gyllenhall and others doing the rest.

So I liked it a fair bit, but interestingly Dan Harmon, creator of Community and co-writer of this was less enthusiastic about it. Here he writes to a young girl who was scared by the film and calls the director a hack and Steven Spielberg a moron (have I mentioned how much I really love Dan Harmon)
He later apologized for calling Spielberg a moron but he remains, along with Joss Whedon and Brian Michael Bendis, one of my favourite people to read on the subject of writing itself. Here's a great bit on characters from his blog -

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