We are always on the lookout for interesting and different films. Enter “A Babysitter’s Guide to Monster Hunting”, think Spy Kids meets Scooby Doo. The film is all about girl power and growing up, was it entertaining? Read our review for more info…
Enter the world of The Order of the Babysitters who protect our world and their kids from the creepy monsters and people in our lives. The audience is brought into the film with lead character Kelly and her journey into this weird profession.
Enter the Grand Guignol (aka The Boogeyman), he is called the stealer of dreams and bringer of nightmares. He has grand plans to use child dreams to fill the world with monsters.
This very visual film will take its audience on a journey.
WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD. WE AIM TO AVOID MAJOR SPOILERS, SO YOU CAN ENJOY THE FILM.
Introduction to the World and Kelly
It sets up the scene well with Monster Inc/ Toy Story vibes to an intriguing idea. It shows what happens what a kid sees when they go to bed. Through the eyes of Kelly, the audience sees every bump and movement that young Kelly reacts too. Isabel Birch who plays young Kelly, reacts well to every movement of toy and closet door. The film then shows it might have been a dream with teenage Kelly (Tamara Smart), waking up in class.
Still only very early in the film, Kelly’s journey shows her as a freshman in high school. Traditional film setup, she is a misfit in school and is a intelligent teen too. Awkward high school situations but in small form. 14 minutes in – the setup to the story is complete.
The Time of Nightmares have begun
The story sets up the main villain in the right way, pushing out the creativity and imaginative parts. Tom Felton (Most famous as Harry Potter’s Draco Malfoy) plays Grand Guignol and everything in his look has subtle references. The hair style of Beetlejuice, the wardrobe of Joker with a bit of Pirates of the Caribbean thrown in.
The little minion “Toadies” that Grand Guignol have are terrific. They are a spin on the minions from Minions. They manage to take the kid and his babysitter Kelly must find him.
The International Order of the Babysitters
Introduced through Oona Laurence’s character Liz LeRue, Liz is one of the “agents” of The Order of the Babysitters. It has a very Spy Kids vibe to it with a intriguing twist in focus of missions. They have a “csi” style researcher, a “Bond” Q style scientist, and a cocky lead agent.
This film is full of pop culture references, the “Charmed” style Book of Shadows is in there too. We love how they keep calling back to HQ and other International HQs too.
The Chase in the Shadows
Kelly chases a mid-level villain that hides in the Shadows, whilst trying to deal with a high school bully and a high school crush. We love how she has the confidence to talk when she has to fight the villain.
Meeting the Cat Lady
When Kelly meets Grand Guignol, it sets up the final arc of the movie. Kelly must find her strength whilst battling her demons. We are loving both main characters for different reasons, Kelly’s emotions and Grand Guignol’s comedic and straight edge.
We will stop with the minor spoilers as we do not want to ruin anything of the conclusion of the movie (including the minor stuff).
A good movie for the family that is different. It has good strength in characters, good pop culture references and is just the right level of scary.
Both good and bad main characters are well developed and showcase a full range of their talent. If Tom Felton does not get another big villain role, we would be surprised. Stand out performance.
We suggest this film for a family viewing as this maybe a good springboard to getting the kid in your family back into books.
For More Info –
At time of writing, this was available on UK Netflix. This is a PG rated film.
The Babysitters Guide to Monster Hunting books are age rated to 9-13 and have a very Goosebumps feel to them.