Movie Review- The House With a Clock in Its Walls

The House with a Clock in Its Walls— the perfect balance of horror and shock as well as lighter comedy and realism. It centers around a 10-year-old boy named Lewis, whose parents passed away in a car accident. Thus, he is sent to live with his Uncle Jonathon (Jack Black) in what seems to be a haunted mansion. 
The director of the movie, Eli Roth, (a renowned horror film director) effectively executes the ideal balance between light and dark as well as fantasy and realism. On the side of the latter, the main character, Lewis, goes through bullying at school. One of the popular kids, Tarby, runs for class president and starts out by being super nice to Lewis, then turns on him once he’s elected. In an effort to prove himself as cool to the “coolest kid,” Lewis faces peer pressure situations that lead to more magical and mysterious consequences.
Lewis’s misfit character is the type of character that you sympathize with—no parents, always picked last for the basketball team, intelligent beyond his years and a kid who just doesn’t quite fit in. 
He’s even more set apart from this kids in his grade when he starts living at his uncle’s house. The house, as the title shares, has a clock in its walls, but nobody can figure out where it is or what it does, just that it’s counting down “till something horrible happens.”
Florence Zimmerman, your friendly next door witch, and Lewis’s Uncle Jonathan search for the clock and also the balance between telling Lewis the truth about the house and keeping him from being petrified.  Related image
Lewis’s character did take some warming up to, but he was very well-rounded and realistic with a solid character arc. The two other main characters, Uncle Jonathan and Florence Zimmerman, were both dynamic and the actors, Jack Black and Cate Blanchett has visible on-screen chemistry. They definitely brought out the best in each other— Black’s character provided reliable comic relief and Blanchett’s character provided mystery and balance.
Overall, the movie was solid, although one could argue the pacing was a bit inconsistent (some components felt drawn out while others felt fast-paced) and other parts did seem a little cliché, but that was somewhat expected.
The House with a Clock in Its Walls is definitely the perfect movie if you’re looking for a Goosebumps or Harry Potter-esque film— a movie with lovable characters, magic, mystery, and thrills with the occasional scare.
Eli Roth was quoted saying, “I wanted to make a movie that felt more like a fantasy; I like to say it’s 2 or 3 streets over from reality.”
The movie has countless magical elements, some whimsical (a pet-like armchair, for example,) and some much more creepy (such as the army of automatons that comes to life.)
Despite it being PG, certain elements of the movie felt a bit much for a younger audience. For instance, the plot leads to necromancy and even introduces Azazel, the Prince of Hell, to assist the antagonist, Isaac Izard. 
The likable and somewhat relatable characters, the magical and mysterious plot, and the director’s vision all intertwined to create a movie perfect for something to get you in the Halloween/spooky frame of mind.
Lewis finds his own magic within himself and just in time, because not even birthday candles or shooting stars can keep that kind of evil at bay.