MONSTER HOUSE (2006)
THE GIST: DJ (Mitchel Musso) lives across the street from old Mr. Nebbercracker (Steve Buscemi), the terrifying, wretched man who howls at anyone on his lawn and destroys little children’s toys. One day, DJ’s buddy Chowder’s (Sam Lerner) new basketball bounces onto Nebbercracker’s lawn and DJ goes to get it. Nebbercracker, with his eye on his yard at all times, comes out of his house and yells at DJ with furor. It’s too much for old man and he works himself up so much that he’s wheeled away by an ambulance. But even with Nebbercracker gone, the house seems to be terrorizing on its own, swallowing people, animals and toys whole. And of course, none of it happens when the ‘rents are around.
TRICK OR TREAT?: It’s a trick for the little ones who are always bugging parents to watch something scary, but a treat for those of us over the age of six.
WHY IT GETS US IN THE SPIRIT: DJ and Chowder are at that age where they’re wondering if they’re too old to go trick-or-treating and it reminds us of how much fun Halloween used to be. I mean, don’t you wish you could still dress up and collect free candy all night?
SCENE TO DIE FOR: Any scene with Officer Lester (Nick Cannon). I’m not actually a Nick Cannon fan but Officer Lester’s expressions and idiocy are just hilarious.
BEST COSTUME: So it’s not exactly a costume, but DJ’s babysitter Zee’s (Maggie Gyllenhaal) disguise as a goody two-shoes who sings along to Olivia Newton-John songs in the car is just great when we find out that she’s actually a rebel who listens to metal.
SUGGESTED SWEET: Gummy bears. Just like trick-or-treating, you feel a little too old to be eating them.