“Fun Size” – Review by MovieManMenzel
This is one Halloween adventure I didn’t mind being a part of.
Fun Size follows Wren (Victoria Justice) and her friend April (Jane Levy) who are planning on attending Aaron’s (Thomas McDonell) Halloween party. After picking out the perfect costume, Wren is ready to head to the party until her mom (Chelsea Handler) stops her and tells her that she must watch her brother Albert (Jackson Nicoll) while she attends a party with her boyfriend. Upset and disappointed, Wren and April break down and take Albert trick-or-treating and while in a haunted house, Albert goes missing. This begins an unexpected adventure that ultimately leads to fun, laughs, and a surprising amount of heart along the way.
When going into Fun Size, I feared for the worst. After seeing this trailer and seeing it was Nickelodeon film I was almost 100% certain that I would hate this film with every bone in my body. With that being said, I want to admit right now that the marketing for this film is horrendous. This movie is marketed completely wrong and geared towards the wrong audience. This film is a fun filled teenage adventure that brought me back to my childhood while I was on this adventure to track down Albert.
It’s hard to really pin point one thing especially that I liked about Fun Size because there were so many little things about the film that made it so enjoyable to me. This film felt like a 80s, 90s, and even today’s teenager films mixed up in a blender and tossed onto the big screen. The result was something that was never unique, but instead extremely entertaining throughout. This film does what so many teen themed movies nowadays try to do: it delivers laughs and outrageous moments but does it without going over the top.
Unlike many teenager movies, this film doesn’t revolve around drinking and nudity as the center focus of the film. It’s more about the characters themselves and as the search for Albert continues you see these characters as being individuals rather than stereotypes. It’s nice to see a film that features teenagers who aren’t all the same and one dimensional. Victoria Justice’s character Wren has a brain and is focused on finding her brother rather than worrying about going to the party unlike her friend April. She is a teenager who not only respects herself, but realizes she has responsibility and I am glad to see a film showcases teenagers like this. If you are worried that this film doesn’t feature the normal “sex obsessed” teens don’t worry; those types are here as well only not exploited as they are in such films as Project X.
Something that I really liked about Fun Size was the fact that film seemed so self-aware of what it was doing. When Albert goes missing and gets picked up by Fuzzy (Thomas Middleditch), it is addressed by Fuzzy himself that it’s kind of weird he is hanging out with an 8 year old kid. It is moments like this that made me chuckle and smile throughout this film. This film feels like “Ferris Bueller” meets “A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas” meets “Home Alone.” There are so many strange scenes and situations but they work because the film is geared towards the right audience and the director Josh Schwartz knows how to implement the jokes into the film.
The strangest thing of all about Fun Size is the fact that the film becomes genuinely touching in the third act. The film comes together as expected for a teenager film, but at the same time it does so by adding depth to the story. It sounds strange saying that there is depth in Fun Size, but truth-be-told the film gets rather touching and various characters seem to grow a little by the time the film ends. I was expecting this film to have a forced and unbelievable ending but instead this film was rather genuine and believable even if it was a tad bit clichéd.
In conclusion, it has been a long time since I walked about of a teenager themed film with a smile on my face, but this film made me have a good time. I really enjoyed the humor even though some of it was infantile. This isn’t a perfect film because it does have its share of flaws especially the first 15 minutes which were pretty painful to be honest. The thing, however, is that the film never went too far with its humor and knew its limits. This is the near perfect teen film because it features everything teens want from a movie: attractive leads, weird situations, some sexual humor, and even well-crafted characters. Fun Size was a real treat from the normal “teen” movie crap like American Pie and Project X, but will more than likely be overlooked due to the poor marketing campaign targeting the wrong audience. It’s a shame because this film really did have a nice 80s and 90s teen flick feel to it. It’s a shame but C’est la vie, at least I know I will be revisiting it again once it hits Blu Ray.
MovieManMenzel’s final rating for Fun Size is a 7 out of 10.