31 Days of Terror: The Monster Squad
31 Days of Terror will cover a wide array of horror films leading up to Halloween. We'll be posting our thoughts and feelings on some of our favorites every day for the next 31 days. If your favorite doesn't make it, it doesn't mean we don't like it, so speak up in the comments below!
"Wolf-Man's got nards!"
While most people would cite The Goonies as their classic coming-of-age film where teens dared to dream big and embark on larger-than-life adventures, there are those of us who cherish The Monster Squad to a higher degree.
When Dracula awakens to bring forth the apocalypse with help from Frankenstein's Monster, the Wolf-Man, the Mummy, and the Gill-Man, it's up to the Monster Squad-a rag tag group of teens who watch too many horror movies and read too many comic books-to save the world.
The Monster Squad really cashes in on The Goonies train with similarities such as the quick-witted dialogue, character archetypes, and even parallel story arcs between the characters of Frankenstein's Monster and Sloth; however, it encompasses everything I love about the 80s, the horror genre at that time (Slashers and Stephen King) and the Universal Monsters, so I absolutely love it. I mean, Dracula's running around throwing dynamite at everything; why does Dracula have dynamite? It doesn't matter, it's awesome. Wolf-Man being blown in half but his regeneration puts him back together again. Awesome. Dracula driving a hearse. Awesome. Making silver bullets in shop class while "Rock Until You Drop" is playing in the background. Awesome. Wait, maybe not so awesome in today's society but in the context of this film, awesome.
The effects still hold up too. Wolf-Man's transformation, while not the most iconic, is still pretty gruesome, as you watch his skin boil and morph before he fully transforms, and all of the makeup on the other monsters is top notch as well. The most underutilized monster is the Gill-Man, but they did a great job with his face and eyes so I wish I got to see more of him on screen.
I adore The Monster Squad and while it has its flaws as it does rely heavily on tropes from The Goonies, it still stands on its own and is the perfect foundation for a reboot.