Newest Reviews
Circumstantial Pleasures
Tyger Tyger
Filmmaker's House, The
Man Standing Next, The
Rock, Paper and Scissors
Batman: The Long Halloween Part One
Salaam Bombay!
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
Treasure City
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Hands of Orlac, The
Death has Blue Eyes
Kala Azar
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Bank Job
Newest Articles
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
  Little Monsters Don't Look Under The Bed
Year: 1989
Director: Richard Greenberg
Stars: Fred Savage, Howie Mandel, Daniel Stern, Margaret Whitton, Rick Ducummon, Frank Whaley, Ben Savage, William Murray Weiss, Devin Rattray, Amber Baretto, J. Michael Hunter, Tom Hull, Magbee, Lisa Cain, Tom Bonsignore, Dana Wood, Byron Faler
Genre: Horror, Comedy, AdventureBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Brian Stevenson (Fred Savage) is a young boy who has recently moved into this neighbourhood with his parents (Daniel Stern and Margaret Whitton) and his little brother Eric (Ben Savage), but there's a problem: he can't make any new friends. Feeling lonely, he retreats into himself and looks forward to the nights when he can make a sandwich and watch the late television shows while everyone else is asleep. Of course his schoolwork is suffering, but there's trouble at home as well when pranks start to be played and everyone blames Brian, despite his protests that none of this is his fault. Yet could there be something in his brother's cries that there is a monster under his bed - could that be the culprit?

It's a quirk of movies that some can be accused of being a rip-off, and then other movies can rip off the rip-offs, in a cycle, and Little Monsters was initially claimed to be a straight copy of the Tim Burton hit Beetlejuice (it had nothing to do with the zombie flick of decades later, which featured a different plot entirely). But fast forward into the twenty-hundreds and you would find this item being claimed to be the inspiration for the Pixar movie Monsters Inc, which made more money than this could ever dream of, pardon the phrase, though by that point the target audience for Little Monsters had long since grown up and it was debatable whether they were showing the picture to the kids of their own they had brought into the world.

That was because it was one of a number of efforts from the nineteen-eighties, and the seventies for that matter, that were aimed at children but looking back contained elements, plot points and humour that would be deemed inappropriate all this time later. Anything on a wide range of quality from Gremlins to The Garbage Pail Kids Movie would fall into that category, yet the popular culture was so obsessed with the horror genre, and the target audience for that had become far younger than it had been in previous eras thanks to the proliferation of VHS players allowing the younglings access to all sorts of entertainment that was really too mature for them. Not for nothing was Freddy Krueger, arguably the biggest horror icon of the eighties, extremely popular with teens and even younger, when they really should not have been watching that sort of material (and that Krueger guy was a child-killer character!).

Little Monsters was not really in this dubious category, but it did include all sorts of makeup effects and costumes designed to be grotesque and nightmarish that you would never get in a kids' movie today, not to mention some very off-colour jokes. When Brian investigates his brother's bedroom, he discovers Howie Mandel as Maurice, a blue, horned and fanged creature who is essentially a mischief maker - it is he who has been behind the pranks - but knows monsters who are worse and keen to make a bigger impact on the non-nightmare community. Maurice hails from an underworld where the monsters rule and can access children's bedrooms at night, but mostly uses this power to make mayhem and Brian initially becomes a willing apprentice until in a spot of morality he realises how cruel he is being and decides to shake up his and Maurice's act. All very well, but now Eric has been kidnapped... Considering those effects would not have been out of place in a Freddy instalment (which this was curiously similar too, only relatively milder), Little Monsters appeared to be training the tots to watch actual horror movies, and while it could not resist sentimentality, it was a convincing "gateway drug" to the style. But would kids in this century understand? Music by David Newman.

[Vestron and Lionsgate release this cult title on a Special Edition Blu-ray, with masses of extras for fans:

Audio Commentary with Jarret Gahan, Editor-in-Chief of CultofMonster.com
Isolated Score Selections and Audio Interview with Composer David Newman
Call Him Maurice - An Interview with Actor Howie Mandel
Beneath The Bed - An Interview with Producer Andrew Licht
Monsters Big & Small - An Interview with Special Make-up Effects Creator Robert Short
Vintage Interviews with Actors Fred Savage, Ben Savage, Special Make-up Effects Creator Robert Short, and Director Richard Alan Greenberg
Behind The Scenes Footage
Making Maurice - Vintage Footage of Howie Mandel's Make-up Transformation
Vintage EPK & VHS Promo
Theatrical Trailer
Stills Gallery.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 936 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf


Last Updated: