The House with a Clock in its Walls Blu-ray Movie Review

The House with a Clock in its Walls Blu-ray Movie Review

The title of this movie is mysterious and will have you wondering what the movie called The House with a Clock in its Walls is all about. I had previously seen trailers and was intrigued but it was not until Halloween 2023 that my husband and I put this 2018 movie on to watch. 

The story, is based on a children's novel by John Bellairs and Edward Gorey. The movie tells the story of a clever 10-year old boy named Lewis Barnavelt (played by Owen Vaccaro) who goes to live with his slightly odd uncle, Jonathan Barnavelt (played by Jack Black) and his friend and neighbor Florence Zimmerman, (played by Cate Blanchett). It turns out that his uncle's house is full of mystery and intrigue and danger. It's the first children's spooky movie from Eli Roth, director of a number of adult horror stories. Roth considers this film a "starter horror movie" for families and tweens. Here's the official trailer:  


Common Sense Media gave the movie 3 stars saying, "it isn't a masterpiece, but it's just spooky and funny enough to entertain young moviegoers who are new to the horror genre."

Simon Abrams on Roger called the movie, "basically watchable" was fairly critical and gave the film a 2.5 star rating.  

Finally, The Hollywood Reporter calls the interactions between Black and Blanchett (that Simon Abrams did not like) an "enjoyably unlikely pairing." 


Common Sense Media recommends the movie for children aged 11 and up.  They say, in their Parents Need to Know Section, that "the movie is very creepy, and that there are a few scenes that are downright jump-worthy for kids. There are scary toys and dolls, ominous sounds, a demon, witchcraft, necromancy, and the occult" but they also say "that good ultimately prevails against the forces of evil." Within the story are also a few injuries, a few milder curse words and an exchange of insults. It is not a lightly frightening movie but it does have messages about "teamwork, perseverance, friendship and facing your fears."


The House with a Clock in its Walls is part fantasy, part horror and part comedy. It's a supposed children's movie that might be too scary for your children so beware. Consider Common Sense Media's age recommendation from above, KNOW YOUR CHILDREN and pre-watch the movie if you are unsure

As an adult, I enjoyed way this movie was able to go, as one reviewer said, from "really funny to pretty freakin' scary" and I loved the house and all of its trappings. I think that this movie is just the sort of movie that might become a cult favorite in the way that Hocus Pocus, Halloweentown, Under Wraps and The Peanut Butter Solution have. Also a fun movie for adults who don't want a horrific horror film. I loved the baby scene!


With regard to the Blu-ray version, High-Def Digest says, "The enchanting fantasy flick casts its charm on Blu-ray with a mesmerizing picture quality, a reference-quality Dolby Atmos presentation and an enjoyable set of supplements" and gives it 3.5 stars. I will add that there is much to see in this film and Blu-ray shows it well.

Order your copy of The House with A Clock in its Walls here from Amazon. It is available in your choice of format including Prime Video, DVD, Blu-ray and 4K.

See you
at the movies!


A page of Not-Too-Scary Movies for Tweens.

Disney's Under Wraps movie reviewed.

The Peanut Butter Solution movie reviewed.

What's Spinning? The Best of Dr. Hook

Remember songs from Dr. Hook? I do! You'd enjoy this album, The Best of Dr. Hook.Learn a bit more about the band here!

I remember songs from Dr. Hook (and the Medicine Show) from my youth. I would have been a bit young when songs like Sylvia's Mother (1972) and Cover of the Rolling Stone (1972) were released though they are well know to me. However, I definitely remember when Sharing the Night Together (1978) and When You're In Love With a Beautiful Woman (1979) came on at our school dances. 

I don't remember owning any of Dr. Hook's albums despite the fact that many of the songs on 1979 album shown here called The Best of Dr. Hook are so very familiar but I suppose that can be attributed to the group's popularity. They had a highly successful but not particularly long career that included nine albums from the late 1960s to the early 1980s.

I realized this morning when I was playing this record that I don't actually know much about this band nor have I heard anything about them lately, which leaves me with questions like who were they and who are they now? I am no expert. The following information has been gathered from various sites online. I hope you find it interesting as I did.

You can find the album shown here, The Best of Dr. Hook, on eBay by clicking right here. I see it readily available on your choice of vinyl record or cassette tape. I saw other 'Best of' compilations on CD but did not see this one. It is possible that the cover art was changed or that this album was never released on CD. Maybe it will be available for you today. 


In 1968, Dr. Hook began playing together as Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show. In 1975, they came more simply known as Dr. Hook. 

The band had a lot of member changes over the years but was originally founded by George Cummings, Ray Sawyer, Billy Francis, Dennis Locorriere and Popeye Phillips and was named with reference to the eye patch that Sawyer wore that obviously references the worlds of Peter Pan and Captain Hook.

Their hits included songs by well-known children's author, Shel Silverstein and self-written songs as well.

Their music has been labelled in many genres that include country rock, ballad, soft rock and easy listening and in total they released 12 albums. They had a highly successful but not particularly long career that included nine albums.


Defining best is awkward but this short list includes some of their well known songs:

Sylvia's Mother 
Cover of the Rolling Stone
Only Sixteen
A Little Bit More
Sharing the Night Together
When You’re in Love with a Beautiful Woman


In 1985, the group played together for the last time on a farewell tour. Ray Sawyer and Billy Francis have since passed away. Dennis Locorriere holds the rights to the name Dr. Hook and uses it sometimes when touring.


Literally. Dr. Hook's song Cover of the Rolling Stone led them to being caricatured on the cover of the magazine!
  • The song Cover of the Rolling Stone became a top 10 single on the American Billboard Hot 100 and resulted in the band being featured in cartoon form on the actual magazine in March, 1973. Original copies of that magazine now sell on eBay for well in excess of $100. See for yourself the original copies of Rolling Stone magazine with Dr. Hook on the cover by clicking right here. If you are in the market, be wary. There has been a reprint of that cover.
  • Bruce Springsteen opened for Dr. Hook in 1973. 
I hope you have enjoyed this look back into one of the very popular bands of the 1970s!

See you
at the record store!


Check out all of the more than 3,800 Dr. Hook recordings and items listed on eBay.

There is a lot of good information about Dr. Hook on

Tom Hanks' Book: The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece

Tom Hanks upcoming novel, The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece, is about how a movie is made. Apparently, it is “funny, touching and wonderfully thought-provoking and is also about the changes in America and American culture since World War II.” 

Here's a video with a few more details about the book:

As someone who appreciates Tom Hanks' movies, I am curious to see how talented he is at writing. This sounds like it could be a good book, too bad it won't be able for Christmas gift gifting in 2022. However, you can watch for it May 2023 or preorder it now from Amazon by clicking right here. You are going to love that you can buy it in whatever format you prefer from book to Kindle to audio CD.

See you
at the movies!

Quick Links:

Toy Story of Terror Review

Toy Story of Terror was Pixar's first television special. Learn more here.


Disney's Toy Story movies have been hugely successful both in terms of sales and with the critics and the public. In 2013, Disney-Pixar presented the whole gang again in the first Pixar television special, Toy Story of Terror. It was a Halloween television special that aired on ABC on October 16, 2013. Fans of the Toy Story movies embraced the spooky special that featured their favorite friends from the movie franchise. On this page, learn a bit more about the special. Be sure to let us know what you thought of it once you have watched it.


An ordinary road trip with all of our favorite friends from Disney-Pixar’s Toy Story Franchise takes an unexpected turn in the road when it checks into a motel and a toy disappears. Sorry, we’re not saying which one. The remaining cast becomes entwined in a series of events, which must be unraveled before they occur again.

Love this plush version of Toy Story's Mr. Pricklepants!

Jessie: Joan Cusack
Woody: Tom Hanks
Buzz Lightyear: Tim Allen
Rex: Wallace Shawn:
Mr. Pricklepants: Timothy Dalton
Trixie: Kristen Schaal
Combat Carl and Combat Carl Jr.: Carl Weathers
My Thoughts About Toy Story of Terror

I was suitably impressed with the special other than the fact that I disliked the product placement. It was a fun show and it was intense. Jessie never gave up and that is what Combat Carl would advise you if you are ever in a difficult situation. If I had to complain, I would say only that it was too short. It was over before before we were ready for it to be over!

Find the Mr. Pricklepants plush toy here on Amazon.


The Blu-ray disc and the DVD were on August 19, 2014. Toy Story fans will want this television special in their home collection! Find Toy Story of Terror here on Amazon in your choice of formats including Amazon Prime.

What do you think? Did you see Toy Story of Terror? Did you like it?

See you
at the movies!


The Peanut Butter Solution Movie Review
Bald is beautiful...unless you are a young boy who suffers a bad fright and has all of his hair suddenly fall out. That is the story in The Peanut Butter Solution, a rare movie from 1985, which is currently only available on VHS videotape and not on.

Under Wraps Movie Review
Under Wraps: A Disney Channel Original and a Hallmark Movie As an eBay seller, I seek out unusual, out-of-the-ordinary movies to sell. Recently, I came across a move called Under Wraps and I carried it home, curious about it for two reasons....

Betty White: A Celebration Documentary

Discover the documentary film and Betty White's life in Betty White: A Celebration.

We all know the world lost the talented Betty White just shy of her 100th birthday but we, or at least I, did not know that she had been working on a new documentary, which was to air on her 100th birthday. That is, today, January 17.  

Originally called, "Betty White: 100 Years Young — A Birthday Celebration", the title was subsequently changed to "Betty White: A Celebration" after her death on December 31, 2021, when the directors pivoted to make the movie a celebration of her life rather than of her birthday.

The film includes looks at her life both of in front of and behind the cameras. That is, at her home life and her working life. It includes looks into shows like The Golden Girls, Saturday Night Life, The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Hot in Cleveland;  interviews with friends and actors like Ryan Reynolds, Tina Fey, Carol Burnett, Valerie Bertinelli, Jennifer Love Hewitt and Morgan Freeman; and, shares final interview, which was given shortly before her death. 



This documentary is being released today, January 17, 2022, in movie theatres. I do not think it is very often that documentary films make appearances at the movie theatres. Sure, there are a lot of stories like biopics but not so many actual documentary films are shown on the big screen. Interestingly, it is a special one-day-only release. Where it goes from there, I do not know though I presume it will appear on a streaming network.


Goodbye, Betty White. I have not seen the film yet but definitely will. As it turns out and not deliberately, the film will be a form of goodbye to White for her fans. It also includes a goodbye from White to us as she took a couple of minutes during filming to give thanks to her fans for always being there. A totally natural, unscripted, genuine moment. I cannot wait to see it.

Stay tuned for details on where you can watch Betty White: A Celebration.

See you
at the movies!



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