What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Scooby-Doo! Frankencreepy is jam-packed with comic spookiness, action, monsters, and creepy bad guys. Kids who are comfortable with cartoon violence as opposed to real violence should have no trouble understanding that all is meant to be funny-scary. The movie includes all the "gothic" people and events a fan could dream of: Dr. Frankenstein's monster, the von Dinklestein Curse, a spooky castle, a ghost, a hunch-backed assistant, and a menacing housekeeper, as well as townspeople out for vengeance. Although Velma's family history is the engine for this movie's plot, Fred, Daphne, Shaggy, and Scooby-Doo all take center stage at times for their usual individual nutty and endearing behavior. Daphne, whose vanity and pride in her appearance is key here, is cursed by "losing her good looks." The visuals of her weight gain and a specific reference to dress size, though mocking that vanity, may perpetuate unrealistic and undesirable standards of beauty for girls.
What's the story?
An astonished Velma finds out she has inherited an estate from a recently deceased uncle -- the Baron von Dinklestein -- in SCOOBY-DOO! FRANKENCREEPY. The gang travels to Transylvania (Transylvania, Pennsylvania, that is), only to find that the von Dinklestein castle (darkly spooky and fraught with danger) comes complete with a ghost, an oddball staff, a monster lying dormant and waiting to be set free, and a nearby village whose vengeful citizens blame the family for the von Dinklestein curse, which promises that its victims will "lose the thing they love most" and then face destruction. Of course, practical, brainy Velma simply doesn't believe in monsters or curses, but even she is at risk when mysterious events rapidly overtake the Scooby-Doo crew. They are all quickly victims of the curse and at the mercy of a slew of legendary villains of all shapes and sizes. Will this adventure prove to be the undoing of the stellar solvers of the supernatural?
Is it any good?
There are lots of levels of funny in this Scooby-Doo adventure, from the villagers who pride themselves on their endangered torch factory ("Our burning pieces of wood are second to none!") to the irreverent parodies of classic gothic characters (hunchbacked assistant, forbidding housekeeper, Dr. von Dinklestein's "monster"). Assorted spooky scares (fires, explosions, chases, fights) alternate with some psychological comedy-drama as one by one the gang members become victims of the curse. Too many endings and one ludicrous reveal in the final moments take the story over the top, but young Scooby-Doo fans and even some grown-ups who watch with them should be entertained by this offering (the 22nd in the Scooby-Doo direct-to-DVD catalogue).
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about all the different legendary and mythological characters and places the Scooby-Doo gang encounters in this film. Which ones, if any, did you recognize? Why do you think they've retained their popularity so long after their creation?
The von Dinklestein curse causes each of the heroes to "lose the thing they love most." What did each hero lose and then learn about him or herself from that loss?
The Scooby-Doo five have been solving supernatural mysteries since 1969. Use the Internet to find out more about these successful comic adventurers. How have they changed over the years? What has remained the same?