Throwback Thursday: “Little Monsters”

Continuing with my theme of Halloween movies from my childhood, I was pretty excited to re-watch “Little Monsters.” The last time I watched this, I couldn’t have been more than 6 or 7 and my mom and I rented the VHS tape from Blockbuster.

R.I.P.
R.I.P.

It’s been over 20 years and I was super psyched . . . until I watched it. Guys, this movie is a little fucked up.

This maybe should've been my first clue.
This maybe should’ve been my first clue.

Brian and Eric, played by real life brothers Fred and Ben Savage (better known as Kevin Arnold and Cory Matthews, respectively), move to a new town with with their parents, a nondescript mother and one of the bad guys from “Home Alone.”

Remember this moment with Buzz's tarantula--it's important later.
Remember this moment with Buzz’s tarantula–it’s important later.

Brian is constantly getting in trouble for shenanigans and broken items around the house and it’s not fair because parents just don’t understand.

Will Smith gets it.

After Eric complains of a monster under his bed, Brian switches rooms with him after Eric’s annoying friend coerces him into it. Brian then sets up a trap and meets the monster: a blue, coked-out, Howie Mandel monster named Maurice.

Seriously, the dude is manic.

Brian and Maurice become friends and Maurice takes Brian down into the secret monster world with him so they can wreak havoc all night. After causing mischief at a few kids’ houses, they make a stop at the home of the bully who once picked on mildly bothered Brian. In retaliation, they put cat food in his tuna sandwich and replace his apple juice with urine, because that’s an appropriate response that didn’t at all escalate disproportionately to the situation. However, the bully was played by the same kid who was Kevin’s older brother, Buzz, in “Home Alone” so maybe he had it coming.

See? It all connects!  I told you the tarantula picture would come back around!
See? It all connects!
I told you the tarantula picture would come back around!

As the nights go on, Brian realizes that he is slowly turning into a monster like Maurice. He learns that Maurice and all the other monsters were once children as well but chose a life free from parents so they live underground, ruin children’s lives, and can be destroyed by light, real or artificial.

Certain death.
Certain death.

Initially, Brian is on board for joining this life of mayhem even though he seems a little creeped out by one of the other monsters who repeatedly tells 11-year-old Brian he has a “sweet ass.” How did that get past the censors? Surely, a creepy supernatural monster that’s over 100-years-old would never be allowed to sexually harass a child in movies today.

Never mind.
Never mind.

Brian is seriously considering becoming a monster like Maurice until he goes on a scare mission with Maurice and all of his monster friends and realizes they’re all just standing around trying to scare the shit out of a baby.

No photo available because it's fucking awful, that's why.  Enjoy this puppy and kitten instead.
No photo available because it’s fucking awful, that’s why.
Enjoy this puppy and kitten instead.

Brian comes to his senses and realizes this is super messed up so he leaves Maurice and heads home where his parents tell Brian and Eric that they’re separating. Eric tries to apologize and say he’ll be a better kid (which is kind of heartbreaking) but their parents imply that they’re splitting up because Brian is kind of a handful.

"You've destroyed my body, my dreams, and now my marriage. The absolute least you can do is put your dishes in the sink."
“You’ve destroyed my body, my dreams, and now my marriage. The absolute least you can do is put your dishes in the sink.”

Brian is upset about both his dad leaving and Maurice turning out to be a baby-scaring douche so he saws all the legs off the beds so Maurice can’t come back in the house. His mom ignores his behavior and tells her friend “at least he’s not a serial killer.”

Yet.
Yet.

Later that night, one of the really bad monsters, named Snik, sneaks into the house through the sofa bed because no matter how much home security you have, someone can always break in and steal you in the night.

Even Mr. Feeny can't save you now.  Sweet dreams!
Even Mr. Feeny can’t save you now.
Sweet dreams!

Brian gathers his rescue team consisting of Eric’s best friend and the girl Brian has a crush on.

Wrong show.
Wrong show.

They journey down into monster land armed with flashlights and start annihilating monsters left and right as they make their way over to the headquarters to look for the evil overlord of the monsters, known only as Boy.

Also known as Brett from "Pulp Fiction."
Also known as Brett from “Pulp Fiction.”

Brian attempts to reason with Boy by screaming at him and Boy responds by making table saw blades come out of the ground because everything in this movie escalates far too quickly.

Yes, as a matter of fact, that is a 9-year-old strapped to a giant dart board.

Boy offers to let Eric go if Brian agrees to become a monster but Brian tells him where he can stick that idea. Boy and Snik then manage to destroy all of the flashlights that Brian and his friends brought before locking the children in a ball pit filled with stuffed animals. This sounds awesome in theory, but it’s not when you’re put there by a psychopath named Boy and a monster named Snik.

Also, there was no orange couch.
I much prefer the other kind of SNICK.

Brian and crew manage to escape with the help of Maurice who has decided to stop being a dick for five minutes. The kids go back and re-arm themselves with an entire Home Depot’s worth of lights with which to destroy Boy and Snik and save Eric once and for all. They bring “Home Alone” Buzz with them to help (because apparently now everyone’s cool after Brian made Buzz drink monster urine) and go back and blast Snik and Boy with the lights. Unfortunately, it’s not quite enough and instead of dying, Boy’s face melts off in a nightmare-inducing way.

This movie is rated PG, by the way.
This movie is rated PG, by the way.

Then, Maurice appears with a flamethrower out of fucking nowhere (why didn’t they just start with this?) and kills both Snik and Boy. Brian rescues Eric and everyone heads back to escape the monster world. But oh no! It’s too late to get back into Brian’s New England bedroom because the sun is already up! If they can’t get out they’ll be trapped forever as monsters so Maurice leads them on a cross country sprint through the underground network until they finally get to Malibu, California where the sun is just about to rise. Brian and Maurice say goodbye and the kids are free, playing on the beach on the other side of the country from their families with no money or way of getting home. Brian uses a payphone to call his parents who are, understandably, extremely shocked to learn that their children and their friends are 3,000 miles away. The movie ends on a freeze frame of Brian, smiling while on the phone with his parents after he tells them “it’s a long story.”

That smile is going to be short-lived when Brian realizes there's no way his parents will believe him and he gets sent straight to therapy for the rest of his childhood.
That smile is going to be short-lived when Brian realizes there’s no way his parents will believe him and he gets sent straight to therapy for the rest of his childhood.

Happy Halloween!

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Emily Regan is the author of several books, including "What's an Adult?: No One Knows Anything and We're All Going to Die." She is an avid fan of reality TV, an unironic Hanson fan, and currently resides in Arizona with her family.

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