October 13: Curse of Chucky

movie reviews

Today’s selection is in honor of my daughter who, for whatever reason, decided to have her first ever night terror midway through my viewing of this film. There’s nothing like walking away from a killer doll to deal with a kid (who looks vaguely like a killer doll) having an inescapable nightmare.

To be honest, the night terror scared me more than the movie, but I’ve got this whole parental bias thing to contend with. The movie, surprisingly, was solid. Over the years, I’ve become disenchanted with this series. Bride of Chucky and Seed of Chucky were a bit too lighthearted for my liking. Chucky is a character that my child self feared at the very core of his being. Seeing the guy tossed into repeated roles of comical domesticity was too much for me.

Curse brings us a new Chucky. This movie has the creepiness and humor of the first three films. Actually, I’d say it’s the scariest Child’s Play film to date. The plot goes a little something like this: a strange vintage 80s Good Guy doll is delivered to the home of a wheelchair-bound woman and her just slightly overbearing mother. The mother mysteriously dies, which prompts the surviving daughter’s sister to come to the house with her family (complete with au pair). The sister’s little girl takes an immediate shine to Chucky, a fun guy who whispers foul-mouthed secrets into her ear. You can probably imagine what happens next.

This is a true fan’s movie. If you’ve seen the rest of the films, you’ll appreciate the somewhat heavy-handed, relatively implausible dot connecting that takes place. None of it’s terribly realistic, but, hell, this is a movie about a killer doll. Be sure to keep watching after the credits for an additional scene.

October 7: Return to Horror High

movie reviews

horror highWhen I was a young boy visiting our small town video store, my horror-hungry eyes never stopped at this movie. I was more often interested in monsters or chainsaws (confession: I still am), but Return to Horror High was a part of the background. It was as familiar to me as the mailbox sitting slightly askew at the end of our driveway.

So, after all these years, I watched it again. You should, too. This movie is self-conscious, self-referential, and goofy: Police are called to the scene of a massacre at a local high school, where a film crew has been slaughtered. Years before, a heinous murder had taken place there, which the crew was looking to reenact. There are plenty of goofy killings and nothing even faintly resembling dramatic tension.

This is a nice piece of 80s schlock. It makes for a good time.