Premiered on October 26, 2012.
"Everyone loves Halloween especially in Cleveland. When you’re known as “the mistake by the lake,” the chance to pretend you’re somebody else for a night sounds pretty good."
Wren Desantis (Victoria Justice) is getting ready to celebrate Halloween in Cleveland, OH. She's invited to attend a party by Aaron Riley (Thomas McDonell), a boy she likes. Wren's friend April (Jane Levy) thinks the party would be great for her popularity.
But Wren's plans are changed when her mother Joy (Chelsea Handler) tells her she needs to take her younger brother Albert (Jackson Nicoll) out trick or treating. Wren and Albert's father has recently died and this will be their first Halloween without him. Albert hasn't spoken since their father died. Joy is busy attending a Halloween party with her new (much younger) boyfriend Keevin (Josh Pence).
She drops everything to find Albert. She gets help from her "nerdy" friends Roosevelt (Thomas Mann) and Peng (Osric Chau). Both boys are nursing crushes on Wren and April, respectively. Roosevelt offers to borrow his moms' car to assist in the search for Albert. That is, if his moms (Ana Gasteyer and Kerri Kenny) give permission.
Joy's Halloween isn't going very well either. She accompanies Keevin to a party hosted by his friend Brueder (James Pumphrey). It's very loud and full of drunk people who are much younger than Joy, she feels out of place.
Albert ends up in a local convenience store where he befriends a clerk named Fuzzy (Thomas Middleditch). They embark upon adventures, attempting to play Halloween pranks on Fuzzy's ex and her new boyfriend Jorgen (Johnny Knoxville).
|Albert and Fuzzy team up!|
|Four teenagers in a Volvo on Halloween night. What could possibly go wrong?|
Fun Size is not very good, there's no sugarcoating it. On a positive note, the "romantic leads" Victoria Justice and Thomas Mann are decent (if not great) actors and they seem like nice kids. Jane Levy is pretty good at making the "stinkface" expression.
I haven't seen Chelsea Handler act before, she's okay too. And I'm always happy to see Ana Gasteyer (one of my favorite 90s SNL vets),even if her role isn't great.
|Kerri Kenny and Ana Gasteyer as Roosevelt's moms.|
However, Fun Size feels like several bits of movies stuck together that don't add up to a whole movie. We get a speech from Joy about how tough it is to be a single mother. I'm sure it is and I have lots of respect for single moms. But Joy's speech feels like it was phoned in from a much more serious movie.
There's also an awkward combination of the sort of humor found in sitcoms aimed at "tweens" and R-rated gross-out comedies. When Roosevelt backs his car into a chicken restaurant, the car gets..."violated" by a robotic chicken.
At one point, April tells Wren that she accidentally put Nair on her butt. This "plot point" exists so the Nair can cause Roosevelt's cat to get sick.
Albert and Wren are both placed into great danger when Albert is held captive by Jorgen. I have a pretty good sense of humor and I know this is just a movie, but child-endangerment isn't funny.
Fun Size is available on DVD and Blu-ray and can also be streamed on Amazon.
Unless you're a hardcore fan of any of these actors, there's not a lot to recommend in Fun Size.
J.A. Morris' rating:
1 and a half jack o'lanterns.
|Galaxy Scout to the rescue!|
I really want to like Fun Size more. There are not all that many feature-length Halloween movies out there, and in some regards, Fun Size gives an overview of various ways of celebrating the occasion.
We see a truly massive and impressive trick or treat scene ...
the teen house party ...
|Cute boy Aaron serenades Wren|
|Albert and Galaxy Girl tearing up the dance floor|
|Wren's mom Joy is not as comfortable partying with 20-somethings as she'd hoped.|
|Albert and Fuzzy attempt to TP someone's abode.|
The young actors are all appealing in their roles too.
There's even an appearance by Aaron Burr -- so to speak -- that would probably play better in this post-Hamilton world.
|Peng is not throwing away his ... shot!|
As it is, though, Fun Size feels more like a missed opportunity.
2 jack o'lanterns