tek's rating:

The Haunting Hour: Don't Think About It (PG)
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Some people might think of this as a TV movie, but it actually came out on video a few days before it premiered on Cartoon Network, in 2007. (I saw it on TV, and have no intention of buying it.) Still, I did somewhat enjoy the movie. Not bad writing or acting or production values. Based on a book by RL Stine, I suppose, though I've never read his stuff. Anyway, not really scary (and of course it's made for kids), but there might be a few reasonably creepy moments, especially if you watch it in the dark. What I preferred about it though was that there were some reasonably amusing things in the movie.

It's about this girl named Cassie Keller (Emily Osment), who isn't particularly happy with being at a new school, since her family has recently moved. You know, misses her friends and whatnot. And she doesn't really fit in; she's kind of goth. Which of course makes me inclined to like her. Also she doesn't seem happy that her parents are more concerned about her little brother, Max. He seems to be easily scared. And well, Cassie likes scaring people. Especially Max, since he annoys her so much. Also, she seems to have a crush on this guy at school, Sean. But then this mean, popular girl named Priscilla, asks him out. And also humiliates Cassie.

So of course Cassie gets back at her at the school's Halloween dance (which apparently wasn't on Halloween night, for some reason). Won't spoil what Cassie did, but it got Priscilla to want revenge against her, and she enlists the reluctant Sean to help with that. But, I'm getting ahead of myself. I forgot to mention that one day Cassie found this little hole-in-the-wall Halloween store run by an appropriately creepy guy (he looked familiar to me, I think he reminded me of both David Carradine and Donald Sutherland, but actually it was an actor with whom I was unfamiliar). And at this store, she bought a book (with a lock) called "The Evil Thing." The first page says "Do Not Read Aloud," but you just know somehow or other she'll end up doing so anyway. And of course she does.

On Halloween night, after taking Max trick-or-treating, while their parents are out at some costume party, Max once again annoys her, and so she reads him the book (hoping to scare him, which of course it does). The story is a rather simple little poem about a horrible monster. Which will only become real if you think about it (hence the title of the movie, or the latter half of the title). And of course, once you've read the story, it's obviously going to be impossible not to think about it. Especially if you're an easily frightened kid like Max. So the evil thing becomes real, and it kidnaps and cocoons a few people, including Max, Priscilla, and a random pizza guy (who I think will be lucky if he doesn't lose his job, through no fault of his own). The monster gets them, btw, after Priscilla's silly little bit of revenge is... um, well whatever. It happens but it doesn't. It's not important. Anyway, Cassie and Sean have to team up to rescue them from the monster. And naturally enough, all this leads to Cassie getting closer to Sean, and her getting closer to Max.

Well, let's see, am I forgetting anything I wanted to say? Oh, Max had a Pokemon pillow case that was just like one I have. Except mine's faded and his was bright like it'd barely been used. Or else they use non-fading laundry detergent, I dunno. I got mine used, anyway, it was like this when I got it! But of course none of this is in any way relevant. I just thought I'd mention it, because it was of interest to me.... Anyway, that's all I can think of to say for now. Seriously, though, it wasn't bad at all.

See also the TV series The Haunting Hour.


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