Monster Trucks

Randomly stumbling across Herbie Fully Loaded on TV the other day, a few things stood out. First, how delightful Lindsay Lohan and Justin Long were as fresh-faced teenagers. Second, just how dang charming the Herbie movies were. There's something about teens and a magical car with a mind of its own that just plain works. That formula is also why everything with Sam and Bumblebee is the best part of the first Transformers movie.

Now that the first trailer for Monster Trucks is here, it looks like Hollywood has found the spiritual successor to the Herbie franchise. It also looks like the title is surprisingly literal. It's about a teen whose old beat-up truck gets infested with a monster. But that's not a bad thing. The monster is supercute and apparently gets a kick out of turning himself into the truck's engine.

Don't ask us the science of how that works, because we don't know and we don't want the movie to explain it. All we need to know is that an adorable monster can be a truck engine, and we're good to go. Monster Trucks, like the Herbies before it, looks like the kind of movie that isn't worried about making excuses for its ludicrous plot. Instead it exists just to give kids dreams about some day having a superpowered truck that's also their pet. Nothing wrong with that.

Funny enough, there is a direct tie between Herbie Fully Loaded and Monster Trucks. Thomas Lennon wrote the former, and he acts in the latter. Apparently you can't make a modern family movie about supernatural cars without him.

Monster Trucks is in theaters January 13, 2017.