Southeast Missouri State University student publication

A Monster House review

Friday, October 13, 2023
Graphic by Emma Kratky

The year is 2006, and a new animated movie about a monster house emerges. Now, it's animated, so it can’t possibly be that scary, right? No, this movie is darker than the Dark Ages. It is a movie so dark that not even the lights can protect you from the nightmares this movie will induce.

So let’s take a look back at the movie that will make you never look at an old house the same: Monster House.

Warning: Spoilers may eat you, just like this house.

1983, and a little girl rides her trike down the sidewalk. A fallen leaf gets stuck between her wheels, and she sees an old house to her right. The door creeks open, and an old man named Horace Neebercracker runs out, screaming at the top of his lungs for the little girl to get off his lawn.

The girl runs screaming, horrified at what the old man will do if she doesn’t escape quickly. Across the street, a teenager named DJ sees the event happening, takes a picture of the old man, and gets prepared to meet with his best friend, Chowder.

His basketball lands on Nebbercracker’s lawn, and DJ, against his will, has to get it, but the man sees him. He grabs and yells at DJ, telling him he will die if he doesn’t leave, to the point where Nebbercracker suffers a heart attack. Feeling guilty, DJ wants to discover the secret behind the house with Chowder and a girl they meet named Jenny, and the secret is the house is alive and killing people who come near it.

It doesn’t matter who or what time of day; when the house eats, it eats. It turns out that the house is possessed by Horace’s wife Constance, who hates children and people, and without Horace to keep her at bay, she goes insane. There’s only one solution to this problem: put the house and Constance down for good.

This movie is underrated for its time and gives some unexpected scares. The movie has some excellent twists and makes you wonder who the true monster in this movie was.

The animation, the storytelling, the characters, and the atmosphere of this movie were ahead of their time, making it a classic for the people who watch it. Some things are questionable, like how a house just manipulates trees and eats a whole squad car, and no one in the whole neighborhood sees anything, but I just leave it to movie mentality.

This is for you if you want a movie with superb animation, some comedic fun, and a heartwarming yet sad backstory.