• Review Date: May 30, 2005
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Horror
  • Release Year: 2005
  • Running Time: 86 minutes

Common Sense Media says

A bloated 86 minutes of overzealous spookiness.
  • Review Date: May 30, 2005
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Horror
  • Release Year: 2005
  • Running Time: 86 minutes





What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable

Near constant peril, reference to child abandonment, children threatened, adults abducted violently, death or disappearance of several characters, creepy dream/imagined sequences, supernatural threats.


Sexual references, brief nudity, non-explicit bathtub scene.

Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink to celebrate and to escape; references to drunkenness.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie tries everything possible to be a scary horror movie but retain its PG-13 rating. Family members disappear violently, animals panic, children are strange, corpses lunge, lights frequently go out for no reason, there is an aural assault of haunting sounds, and no one believes the main character. A character watches as loved ones are tossed around and then taken from him, a child is shut in a closet as a cure for being scared, another child is separated from her family. There are references to sex and a character is naked (non-explicit). Characters drink to drunkenness at a party and there are references to drinking, as well as a jarring product placement.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Eight-year-old Tim Jenson is scarred for his life before BOOGEYMAN'S title sequence rolls. He went to bed one night jumping at shadows in his rural, gothic home and watched in horror as his closet violently swallowed his father. Fast-forward 15 years and Tim (Barry Watson), now a twitchy lygophobic with a tendency to stand staring at dark closets, returns home for a funeral. He alone sees that all dark places -- under the bed, in the closet, behind the pantry door -- are potential lurking spots for the boogeyman. At the off-hand recommendation of his psychologist and to further the plot, he must face his childhood fears, including that of his supernatural closet.

Is it any good?


With a storyline thinner than the protagonist's stereotyped rich girlfriend and enough lead-heavy dialogue to sink a movie of twice the caliber, BOOGEYMAN is a bloated 86 minutes of overzealous spookiness, to be admired primarily by aspiring sound-effects specialists. The movie cuts to the chase quickly but then wallows in atmospherics. Lengthy scenes reveal nothing more than predictable, two-dimensional characters. Ominous portent is constant. The creaking house, unnerving close-ups, quick cuts, and flickering lights might make some viewers seasick and others wish they could TiVo to the final confrontation.


Touches of humor, some genuinely spooky moments, and the occasional flash of decent acting keep this movie a notch above straight-to-video caliber. Watching Tim at the child counseling center offers a hint that this movie could be richer, more interesting fare, but then the next scene -- a possible boogeyman lurking behind a ceiling tile -- tugs us back to the over-the-top forcedness of it all.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the legend of the boogeyman, who appears in many cultures as a warning to misbehaving children. The psychologist discusses how children might turn to supernatural explanations as a coping mechanism for feelings of loss or powerlessness. How do modern stories use scary characters or the supernatural to guide behavior now? Urban legends often have an element of the supernatural, how might they derive from older tales, like those of the boogeyman?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:February 4, 2005
DVD release date:May 31, 2005
Cast:Barry Watson, Emily Deschanel, Skye McCole Bartusiak
Director:Stephen Kay
Studio:Columbia Tristar
Run time:86 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense sequences of horror and terror/violence, and some partial nudity

This review of Boogeyman was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 14 years old Written byMeow314159 August 15, 2010


I completely agree with the review below me. When I saw this movie I wanted to hit myself in the head with a lamp. It was so lame that it was almost funny. I laughed so much at the bad acting that it could almost be a comedy. This movie is so lame that I can't describe it in words. I am actually pretty angry that people would actually watch this. I could definitely make a scarier movie if you gave me a video camera and a rubber ducky. Seriously, no joke. The acting would be better too.
Adult Written byMichael Sladek November 8, 2014

Suspensefully Creepy

This movie will definitely be giving kids nightmares!! This movie has a lot of violence and gore, lesbian kissing, and mild language.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Kid, 12 years old June 4, 2013


Worst. Scary. Movie. Ever. All this movie has is scary scenes and things that make you want to cry.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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