Stranger Things review

Stranger Things was recommended by a friend who said the show was “Excellent”, and I couldn’t agree more.

Others have compared scenes from the show to The Shining and Firestarter, and likeness to a Stephen King novel.  I feel the show has more of an E.T. meets The Goonies vibe.

The show is set in a small town in the ’80s and focuses on the disappearance and search for Will Byers, played by Noah Schnapp.

Will was last seen playing Dungeons and Dragons with his friends, Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Mike (Finn Wolfhard), and Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo).  When Will returns home, he realizes some thing is in the house.  He heads to the shed and loads a gun, but never uses it before he is transported to another dimension.

Will’s mother, Joyce, played by Winona Ryder, is convinced she heard Will’s voice and that he is communicating with her through the lights in their home, which prompts her to put up Christmas lights throughout.

The town’s police chief, Jim Hopper, played by David Harbour, doesn’t believe Joyce at first, but does investigate and finds a cover-up by a shady government agency.

Not only are the adults investigating the boy’s disappearance, but so are his friends and their older siblings, unbeknownst to each of the three groups.

While looking for Will, the boys find a girl with a shaved head dressed in a hospital gown.  They become friends with the girl, and find out she has telekinetic abilities, which she uses to aid them in their search for Will.

The camaraderie amongst the group feels genuine, due to both good writing and excellent performances given by the young actors.

While the character of Will’s older brother, Jonathan, is a minor role, the performance by the actor, Charlie Heaton, is outstanding.

The writing was incredible throughout.  I really enjoyed that the majority of the characters didn’t have only stereotypical characteristics – the science teacher wasn’t a complete nerd, and the rich kid wasn’t a total douchebag.  There were also no typical frustrating moments of stupidity by the characters, and I found that refreshing.

If I listed all of the great things about this show, I may never stop typing.  I highly recommend this show.

My only criticism of the show was the use of CGI in the lab and with the monster.  I believe the slimey webbing and creature would have looked much better using practical effects.

Stranger Things is a definite watch if you are a fan of sci-fi with a bit of laughs, but not done in a campy way.  There are a few creepy moments, but nothing over-the-top or gorey.

You can currently view all 8 episodes of Stranger Things on Netflix.

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