I never got around to seeing Goosebumps while it was in theaters. That’s probably a good thing; while I found the fantasy flick to be mostly enjoyable, it is not a film that needed my presence in a theater.

In this fairly clever adaptation of the young-adult horror of R.L. Stine, Jack Black plays the author, a paranoid man living a hermitic life and keeping his daughter Hannah (Odeya Rush) in virtual imprisonment. When Zach (Dylan Minnette) moves in next door and befriends Hannah, they find themselves opening some books in Stine’s library—and unleashing the beasts within.

Black is pretty good in this typically manic performance, and the kids are OK. Ryan Lee gets the typical nerd role, and he does decently with it, although his character does feel a little clichéd.

The special effects are passable. They include a confused yeti, evil garden gnomes and the requisite evil ventriloquist’s dummy.

Rob Letterman directs; this marks his third teaming with Black after Shark Tale and Gulliver’s Travels. This is easily their best work together.

Special Features: You get deleted scenes, blooper reels and some featurettes.