A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Scooby-Doo!: Stage Fright, as with most Scooby-Doo films, contains some scary bits (in this case, a Phantom of the Opera-style "ghost" that terrorizes a theater) and some adolescent humor (Daphne keeps pining for Fred, and they eventually kiss). Although some characters are temporarily injured, rest assured that the Mystery, Inc. gang always catches the villain.
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What's the story?
In SCOOBY-DOO: STAGE FRIGHT!, the Mystery, Inc. gang heads to Chicago, where Daphne (Grey DeLisle) and Fred (Frank Welker) are set to compete in the finals of an American Idol-style reality show. Only once they reach the theater are they told it's haunted by a dangerous "phantom" with a penchant for dropping props and setting curtains on fire. Daph and Fred immediately enlist Velma (Mindy Cohn), who wants to tour the city's cultural institutions, and Shaggy (Matthew Lillard) and Scooby (Welker), who just want to eat pizza, to help them solve the mystery.
Is it any good?
Although some of the Scooby-Doo movies don't seem set in a particular time and place, this entertaining entry is clearly the product of an era when reality talent shows are all the rage. So, everything from the popularity of the fake show and the behavior of the contestants and the attitude of its host (brilliantly voiced by Wayne Brady, no stranger to variety shows), is extremely believable, as is the ongoing romantic tension between Daphne and the clueless Fred.
Scooby-Doo movies come out so regularly it's easy to assume they're not any good. Yes, they're an acquired taste, but they help kids understand the basics of suspense/mystery stories, appreciate the way different personalities can mesh to work together, and laugh heartily at how a dog and his best friends can always manage to save the day.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what makes Scooby-Doo such an enduring character. Why do these mysteries continue to be popular? How does this Scooby-Doo movie compare to the many other Scooby-Doo stories?
What makes reality talent shows so popular that a fake one is a major part of this Scooby-Doo story? What are your favorite talent shows?
This movie has more romance than other Scooby-Doo installments. Do you think romance fits into the story?
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