1987 was my latest stop in my Movies of the 1980s journey. Now I just made the journey part up, but hey it sounds good and since I'm in a 80s type of mood lately, I figure it will work.
I was about 11 years old when this movie came out and I loved every moment of it then and I still love it now. From the opening screen roll (think Star Wars) we know that this movie is going to be both horror as well as comedy.
One Hundred Years Before this Story Begins...It Was A Time Of Darkness In Transylvania...A Time When Dr. Abraham Van Helsing...And A Small Band Of Freedom Fighters...Conspired To Rid The World Of Vampires and Monsters...And To Save Mankind From The Forces of Evil...They Blew It
Of course I don't know what else you would expect from writer/director Fred Dekker. For those of you who have never heard of him, he is also the mastermind behind House, the cult horror movie from the 80s not the obnoxious TV show that's on now.
The basic plot of the movie (I will give the DVD synopsis at the end of this post) is this. Take 4 twelve year old boys, one cigarette smoking junior high kid, and one younger sister and pit them against the monsters of Universal Studios. Make the cigarette smoking, leather jacket wearing junior high kid Ryan Lambert (Kids Incorporated) and you got a hit movie on your hands. Well at least Fred Dekker was hoping for that. The movie didn't do very well at the time but has now become a cult hit world wide with an ever growing audience.
I never knew what there wasn't to like. You have all the classic monsters headed up by Dracula himself. His henchman are non other than The Mummy, The Wolfman, Frankenstein's Monster, The Creature From The Black Lagoon, and of course his Three Brides. Of course, it may not have helped that Universal didn't want anything to do with this movie and did not allow the creators to specifically say that these in fact were those legends of scariness.
Now you may ask how the kids happen to get involved. Well this is what happens. Dracula is looking for an amulet that is a repository for pure good. If he is able to destroy that amulet then the powers of evil will be able to take over the world. One of our young heroes, namely Sean, comes into possession of a diary written by Dr. Van Helsing himself that gives an account of how to turn the amulet into a gate opening up into Limbo. If that gate can be opened by a virgin (of course) then the creature of the night will be sucked in and the day will be saved. You may be thinking to yourself why would a 12 year old even be interested in such a book, especially since it's written in German. Well the simple answer to that is because him and his friends belong to a monster club and have a rather healthy fascination with all things monster. So Sean's mother brings it home to him and the fun wackiness ensues.
Now obviously Dracula can not allow such a thing to happen so he sends Frankenstein to get the book away from the kids. On the way to carry out his mission Frankenstein meets Phoebe (Sean's younger sister) in the exact same manner that he does in the classic Universal movie. Only this time the little girl is spared the dunking in the pond and the two become buddies. If you haven't already guessed Frankenstein helps the kids save the day.
The ensuing battle produces one of the best scenes in the history of movies. This may be a testament to the fact I'm a guy and that I was a kid when I first saw the movie, but this line still cracks me up today. To set it up for you Sean, Horace (another one of the 12 year old that is nicknamed "Fat Kid" even by his friends), and Frankenstein take a field trip to the decrepit old mansion that Dracula is hold up in. You may be thinking to yourself what a stupid idea, which it may have been but how else were they supposed to steal the amulet from Dracula?
Anyway, back to the story, at one point in the mansion they are discovered and set upon by the Wolfman. This is a little of the dialogue that happens between Sean and Horace. If you don't find it as funny as I do blame it on the fact I'm a guy and that it is much funnier in the movie.
Sean: "Kick him in the nards! Kick him in the Nards!"
Horace: "He doesn't have Nards!"
Sean: "Do it! Do it!"
Then we see Horace actually kick him in the aforementioned area and the Wolfman goes to the floor. The look on Horace's face is what makes the next line as funny as it is.
Horace: "Wolfmans got nards."
Sorry, but I can't talk about this movie without that scene. Needless to say in the chaos that takes place next the good guys end up winning and the Monsters lose. You have to hand it to Rudy though. He takes out The Mummy, all three Brides, and the Wolfman. I guess leather jackets really do make you tough.
Here is the synopsis from the back cover of the DVD:
You know who to call when you have ghosts, but who do you call about monsters? Whether it's a bat in your belfry or a mummy in your microwave, THE MONSTER SQUAD ain't afraid of no ghouls!
Count Dracula has until midnight to retrieve an ancient amulet that will give him final control over the delicate balance between good and evil in the world. To help him, the creepy Count calls on some old friends: the weird Wolfman, the grotesque Gill_Man, mildewed Mummy and freaky Frankenstein. as the ghoulish group gets closer to the amulet, it's up to THE MONSTER SQUAD, headquartered in the local tree house, to pool its questionable resources and stop the monster mayhem!
So the moral of this story is threefold. First don't mess with The Monster Squad. Second, there is only one way to kill the Wolfman since dynamite won't work. Third, watch this movie as soon as you can.