HTS Moderator , Reviewer
Title: Monster High: Electrified
HTS Overall Score:68
There’s a special place in hell for those who created “Monster High”. I have no problem with kids flicks as I actually have a decent amount of fun with my nephews coming over and watching stuff like the “Barbie” or “Tinkerbell” movies and I even get a good kick out of “Thomas & Friends” due to growing up with the books. However, “Monster High” is a bit of a tough pill to swallow. The franchise is basically like “Brats”, meaning that it’s a giant marketing scheme to sell toys, games, backpacks, stickers, movies and countless other pieces of merchandise. I can forgive many of those sins if the movies were actually GOOD (or at least palatable), but they tend to be overly cheesy and incredibly trite films that deal with the very basics of positive lessons, but wrapped in “ghoulish” jokes and puns that render the films only watchable for the 8 and under crown (who seem to be eating the movies up like oreos as everywhere I look I see a “Monster High” jacket, backpack or themed school supplies, not to mention my youngest nephews giggling along with them).
“Monster High” seems to have had a soft reboot with “Monster High: Welcome to Monster High” (which also turned the horrible quality animation to a much-needed HD resolution boost), as the characters and look of the school have been tweaked slightly to fit into the reimagining. However, all the character you know and “love” are still the same and it’s back to the classic multiple storyline arc for the guys and ghouls (yes, these are actual puns from the show). This time Clawdine is wanting to start a style and fashion salon for the “normies” (otherwise known as normal human beings), so she, Draculaura, Frankie, and the rest of the crew all pitch in and decide to help her make her dream come true.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94050[/img]The fly in the ointment turns out to be the villain from LAST film, Moanica and her Zomboys. It seems that Moanica is not fitting in that well with the rest of Monster High and thinks that humans and monsters are NEVER going to get along. When Frankie gets struck by lightning and suddenly has the ability to channel pure electrical energy, she hatches a plan to use Frankie’s power and super power herself and the Zomboys so that she can show the rest of Monster High that normies and monsters CAN’T live together. Throw in a subplot that goes nowhere about starting a band and “giving it all you got” and a few more puns about Icoffins (Iphones) and other ghoulish jokes and you’ve got yourself your standard “Monster High” film.
I always have to say this when watching a “Monster High” or “Barbie” movie. These are not exactly my “let’s get the guys together and crack open a few cold ones” type of movie and fully admit that I’m not even remotely the target audience. However, I’ve watched enough children’s fare and animated merchandise pushers to know decent storytelling against what’s not. Sad to say, “Monster High” is pure and utter fluff for the under 8 crowd and doesn’t even pretend to be anything but that. “Electrified” isn’t really any different than any of the other “Monster High” films that came before this, so if you’re a fan of the previous movies (or at least your KIDS are a fan) then there’s no reason why this one won’t entertain any less.
Not Rated by the MPAA
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94058[/img]Like “Monster High: Welcome to Monster High”, “Electrified” takes a BIG step up from the very mediocre animation that the rest of the franchise is known for. Gone is the aliasing, grungy haziness and downright poor looking details and in its place, is some very decent look Blu-ray 1080p goodness. The animation STYLE is still very basic and bland, but the colors are bright and neon, with shades ranging from electric purple, to green, to maroon red and quite a few other primary loveliness. The lines and curves of the characters show no signs of jaggies or other abnormalities and despite some softness to the overall animation style (only very slight and just in comparison to higher quality and bigger budgeted movies, not the hazy softness of the older “Monster High” flicks) the image is artifact free.
[img]http://www.hometheatershack.com/gallery/file.php?n=94066[/img]The 5.1 DTS-HD MA track for “Electrified” is a pleasant experience, and is very much in line with the way the series has always sounded over the years. Dialog is well replicated and anchored up front, while the surrounds are utilized comfortably with the synthesized pop music that flows throughout the movie and the crashes and bangs created by Moanica and her Zomboys causing havoc. LFE is pretty aggressive, and adds weight to the synthesized pop/rock music along with the crashes and bangs made Moanica's minions of doom. Frankie's electrical abilities make for some of the more immersive moments in the film and utilize a good bit of the surrounds as well as some punishing bass.
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“Monster High Electrified” is your typical “Monster High” flick. I didn’t enjoy it any more or any less than the previous entries, but my nephews had a blast with it, so mission accomplished. The uptick in video quality from the producing animation department helped a lot too, as I was always more than a little frustrated at the poor animation quality that the show demonstrated. I’m not saying that higher quality animation will make the movie more palatable to adults, but it at least looks prettier and more eye catching for the kiddy winks, and it also assuages my video quality snob tendencies as well (I know, I know). If you liked the previous entries, go for it. Otherwise I’d go check out “Rogue One” instead.
Starring: Celeste Henderson, Cassandra Morris, Debi Derryberry
Directed by: Jun Falkenstein, Avgousta Zourelidi, Renee Veilleux
Written by: Keith Wagner
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1, French, Spanish DTS 5.1
Runtime: 72 minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: March 28th 2017
Buy Monster High: Electrified On Blu-ray at Amazon
Recommendation: For the little ones
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