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VINE VOICEon 10 January 2008
'The Monster Squad' begins when Count Dracula, accompanied by Frankenstein's Monster, the Wolfman, the Mummy and the Gillman are in search of a powerful amulet that will grant them power to rule the world. A pre-teen group of monster fanatics, lead by Sean, as well a scary German guy and Sean's dad attempt to stop the forces of evil, with the help of the ancient diary of Van Helsing.

This cult classic is a true hidden gem of 80's cinema that has really been over-looked and over-shadowed by other, more well-known films like The Goonies and The Lost Boys (another two of my all-time favourites). Originally I had this recorded from Sky TV back in the late 80's/early 90's (I was about 8 or 9 years old at the time) and used to watch this film all the time. I'd pretty much forgotten about it when I then saw this 20th Anniversary Edition available on DVD. Watching it now, probably 15 years since I last watched it and is still as exciting, funny and brilliant as I remember it being. Ok, the special effects aren't up to today's standard, but for the time they are very advanced and well done.

Also on the 2nd disc is a 5 part documentary (which is over an hour long in total) which has a retrospecive look at the film, the characters, the monsters, as well as much more, all from various people involved with the film (including some of the actors, the director, producer etc). This is a fairly interesting watch as it goes into detail about various topics such as why it is not so well known (or is it...?), why distribution has been so difficult over the years, what the actors are up to now and also has some footage of the 20th anniversary reunion and screening.

Overall, if you watched and loved it when you were younger then this is an essential must-buy. I imagine most fans will now been in their late 20's to early/mid 30's, so sit down with the kids and introduce them to a true classic horror comedy that all the family can enjoy.
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on 24 October 2003
A necessary addition to anyones collection, The Monster Squad is a fully nostalgic and fully fantastic work in its genre. With the fun of such films as 'The Goonies' and the beauty of the classic horror flick, The Monster Squad provides excellent special effects for its time, and is definately secured as one of the greatest of the eighties movies in anyones collection. Buy it, if not to enjoy it, then simply to say that you own it.
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VINE VOICEon 31 March 2011
The similarities between the Monster Squad and the Goonies are numerous, but while The Goonies is a more expansive and recognizable movie, I prefer this one. Produced by Peter Hyams and Rob Cohen, and with a script by Fred Dekker and Shane Black, the Monster Squad had a lot of creative talent behind it, so why did it fall into a limbo like the one featured in the movie? Set in small-town America, a bunch of young kids form a monster-movie fan club in their eccentric treehouse. But when REAL classic monsters show up (that would be the Wolfman, Gillman, the Mummy, Frankenstein's monster, AND Dracula) they begin to look deeper into their origin with the help of Van Helsing's diary.

I'd love to explain the film further, but the execs at TriStar Pictures ordered 15 minutes to be cut from the film, which results in a huge loss of coherence in the first act, thus creating many plot holes. Just where did the monsters come from? If Dracula's cargo was randomly jettisoned over small-town America, how come the amulet he's looking for just-so-happens to be there? Some scenes in this film are almost over before they begin. It's very frustrating. The credits begin to roll at the 77-minute mark too, so whoever thought that the film was overlong was clearly a fool.

Fred Dekker killed his career beyond redemption with RoboCop 3, but The Monster Squad and Night of the Creeps will forever stand as two low-budget horror homages from a decade that endorsed risk-taking.

For years, the Monster Squad was available only on a long out-of-print VHS release. Naturally, as was the logic at the time, this was a pan-and-scan version which butchered the film's brilliant anamorphic composition. All is rectified with this Blu Ray which features a great 2.35:1 1080p picture with DTS HD-MA sound and plenty of extras.
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on 27 October 2003
In keeping with the 'brat packs' of the eighties movies scene, this fantastic film delivers all that one would look for in a movie of its genre. With fantastic special effects and as much stage make-up as you can handle the group of mismatched boys (and girl) battle against the evil forces of Dracula, Wolfman, The Mummy etc, and no grown ups to help they got their work cut out for them! If not for the sheer enjoyment of it, buy this video simply to say that you own it...and who would have thought wolfman has nards!
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on 14 June 2008
Why there is no region 2 edition?!?! I dont understand really there are some classics out there and there is no one releaser who would bring this to europe!!!!!!!! Hello somebody!!!
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on 21 January 2005
The Monster Squad how can i sum up this movie in one word (Fantastic.)I loved this film ever since i saw it as a child and have kept my original ex rental copy all these years.Plot A hundred years ago in Transylvania Dracula fought his final battle,now one hundred years later that same battle will start again in America he recruits all the old monsters to help him(Frankenstein's monster,the wolfman,the mummy and the creature from the black lagoon.)His opponents the monster squad a group of kids who are obsessed with monsters.Brilliant,this needs a DVD release soon because it's a deleted title on video so many people won't be able to obtain a copy.If you have a copy don't let it go.
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Two decades after its brief and disastrous theatrical run, The Monster Squad holds up surprisingly well. Intended as a cross between the Our Gang comedies and Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein and marketed as Ghostbusters for the John Hughes crowd, Fred Dekker's comedy-horror treat is a lot more enjoyable than either unpromising pitch, not least because it's made not just with affection but some intelligence by people who love the classic Universal horrors, and more importantly it doesn't patronise or condescend - this is the kind of children's film that adults can genuinely enjoy themselves. (Just as well. In a typical fit of perversity, Britain's infamously unbalanced late film censor James Ferman gave the film a 15 certificate in the UK, thus preventing children from seeing it and ensuring its commercial death in that market: not because of the monsters but because he was offended that a six-year old girl is referred to - in the purely dictionary sense of the word - as a virgin!)

The plot is simplicity itself: a club of monster-mad school kids find themselves facing up to the real thing when their small town suddenly finds itself playing host to the Wolf Man, Frankenstein's monster (Tom Noonan), the Mummy, the Gill Man and Dracula (Duncan Regher, who avoided the other actors on the set to stay in character: "I thought he was just being a p***k" offers Noonan in the doc). Running a very tight 81-minutes, it never outstays its welcome or overplays its hand, for the most part playing it straight: rather than just go for cheap pratfalls, people do die at the hands of the monsters in the film, while Leonard Cimino's wonderful `Creepy German Guy' has one brief but memorably powerful moment that reminds the audience there are indeed real monsters in the world. The script could be a little sharper at times and most of the action is relegated to the last half-hour, where we find out just what happens when you blow up a werewolf (definitely need a silver bullet for that puppy), but the whole thing is just so darn likeable it barely matters.

The 2-disc Region 1 NTSC DVD offers a good widescreen transfer that highlights Fred Dekker's good use of the Scope frame and also boasts a good array of special features, though there are some deleted scenes that aren't included (but can be found on YouTube). Sadly the impressive feature-length documentary reveals that one of the squad died of pneumonia in his early 20s. Lionsgate's region-free Blu-ray release offers a fine transfer with the same extras, but with two important alterations: the 87-minute documentary has been re-edited to 76 minutes and includes some footage not in the longer DVD version despite the shorter running time, while the deleted scenes section has been expanded to 13 scenes, some taken from a fullframe video of the extended TV version. Be warned, however, that Olive Films' subsequent Blu-ray release includes no extras whatsoever and is Region A locked.
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on 30 January 2015
This new Olive films blu-ray reissue of the Monster squad is s***, has no special features at all
except for Theatrical trailer and the picture quality is probably terrible total waste of money

the old Lionsgate 20th Anniversary blu-ray release from 2009 has all the special features plus is ALL REGIONS to
not Region A like it says on the product details of the listing
the Lionsgate Blu-ray is ALL REGIONS no Doubt about it, the back cover has ABC on it so it's all regions
the special features are incredible
a new 75mins retrospective Documentary MONSTER SQUAD FOREVER
which has new interviews with some of the cast & crew from the film
including Director Fred Dekker, Producer Johnathan zimbert Actors Duncun Regher & Tom noonan
Child Actors Andre Gower, Ashley bank, Ryan Lambert are also interviewed
Deleted scenes section, Stills Gallery
plus 2 Audio commentaries
1st commentary is with Fred Dekker, Andre Gower, Ashley bank and Ryan Lambert
2nd commentary is with Fred Dekker, Johnathan zimbert
plus the picture quality is amazing in 2:35:1 widescreen, very sharp & clear picture for sure
all this on 1 Blu-ray Disc, incredible

so if you love the monster squad
get the Lionsgate blu-ray release, not the s*** Olive films blu-ray
the Lionsgate blu-ray is still available to buy off there's still many listings selling it from $30 and up
1 star i gave this Olive films blu-ray waste of money
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on 24 July 2009
Definitely on a parr with Frightnight, Lost Boys etc, super stuff and a cracking story. The monsters are great, vampire action in true form and fun thrown in. It should be on DVD here in the UK, just as films frightnight 2, Dark night of the scarecrow, Werewolf, Dark Moon, House of Frankenstein (only shown on tv here), it really defeats me why they cannot be on region 2 when loads of dross is churned out under the name classic. One word to those didtributers --issue...and they will sell here.
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on 20 June 2010
why have none of the reviews here mentioned the person responsible for this classic fun movie? The director/writer!!!! D'uhh the man without whose involvement this film would not be being lauded here. The legendary Fred dekker.Freds movies always have that air of integrity and enthusiasm. The desire to give his audience what they want and not be sloppy in his approach to film making. Witness this ethic in his other classics"Night of the creeps" his other homage to the golden age of horror with a distinct 80's flair and "Teen agent" his parody of the bond ouvre. Also his under-appreciated "Robocop 3" awash with the dekker magic but one sequel too late and aimed at a younger audience. What is fred up to these days?? Who knows. Hopefully not languishing in obscurity but faring well in TV or somewhere that appreciates his flair and talent. Monster squad is probably his best work as it contains all the elements that he so obviously relishes. Thanx!!
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