Curse of Chucky

It’s 2013 and Team Chucky is moving on from the black comedies of the late 90s and trying a little Artistry and Suspense this time. And while it’s not my favorite, it works well enough that it makes me want to watch Cult of Chucky again because NOW I get what was going on with all that. (I’m officially upgrading Cult of Chucky to 4 horrors, so everyone add that to your charts at home.)

First we meet FIONA DOURIF, who, apart from being Brad Dourif’s daughter, is also a literal genius in Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency, so please watch that if you like to enjoy things, and I know you do. She plays Nica, a paraplegic living with her mother in a giant, sad house with, as far as we know, zero connection to the Chucky family of products. Until a Chucky doll arrives in the mail at her house and her mother “commits suicide” shortly after. Nica’s sister brings her family to the house to box everything up and talk about selling and of course her sister has a young daughter who FUCKIN LOVES THIS DOLL. Hey you, reader, you were once a child. Does this Chucky doll hold literally any interest for any of you??? I can’t imagine a time in my life when I would have even noticed this doll because it wasn’t a My Little Pony so it can go die in a fire. (And it has!) Is this just part of Chucky’s voodoo majicks? Please show a picture of a Good Guys doll to a child and ask them if they like it. They will not.

Now Nica’s sister is an Actual Bitch who resents her disabled sibling for not having working legs (which, ps, she was BORN WITH so you’ve had like thirty years to get over this, lady) and spends the entire movie treating her with some combination of overprotection and disdain. (Don’t worry, she gets murdered directly in the eye later.) So as soon as weird shit starts happening, she immediately assumes Nica is trying to personally ruin her life, while Nica, an adult, tries to actually figure out what the fuck is happening by looking into this doll.

Of course by the time she has finished her googling half the family is dead and the little girl is missing. And then etc etc crawling on the floor to escape a doll yadda yadda murder trial insanity plea asylum. It’s hard to give a real synopsis on this one because very little happens up front and the bulk of the set-up for Cult of Chucky happens in the last twenty minutes of the movie and even after the credits, where we get to enjoy the return of Alex Vincent as Andy and Jennifer Tilly as Tiffany, both of which made me literally clap my hands in glee. We also get to enjoy an extended flashback sequence wherein we actually see some face acting out of Brad Dourif, who unfortunately is made to wear a Tommy Wiseau cosplay which does undercut the severity of his serial killings a bit, but I’ll take it.

This movie wasn’t necessarily amazing, but it was pretty okay (Fiona Dourif was actual fire) and it succeeded in making me REAL jazzed for Cult of Chucky, which, again, is a movie *I just watched.* So that’s pretty good, I think.

…..SOLID 3 HORRORS.

Which brings me to something that troubles me. I only have one film left to watch in the series and so far I have only *not* enjoyed two out of six films. (I’m skipping the remake for now because I saw a picture of that doll design and, woof.) In fact, there were a couple in there that I very much DID enjoy. This is a much higher hit rate than Children of the Corn. Therefore…..am I a Chucky fan? Do I LIKE these movies? I had assumed for so long that I did not like this stupid doll and now, after around ten hours of being sucked into the Chuckiverse…..I’m not sure what to think. What if that weaselly little puppet does possess powers of attraction….

That lovable scamp

Curse of Chucky

Child’s Play 3

Ah, finally, the comforting familiarity of a truly mediocre horror movie.

Where Child’s Play 2 was a buck wild adventure in making me personally feel uncomfortable and depressed, Child’s Play 3 is exactly what I expected it to be: a forgettable and unimportant sequel with virtually no bearing on the franchise as a whole, never to be spoken of again.

Child’s Play 3 also suffers from the casting of a Replacement Andy, as the events of this film take place eight years after Child’s Play 2, but the movie itself was released only nine months after the previous installment (almost as if they didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about or working on it, huh), meaning that the character of Andy needed to be a young teen while OG Andy is a seven year-old. In fact, I recognized exactly zero of the lead actors in this one besides the inevitable return of Brad Dourif, who now has to drag the entire movie uphill as it kicks and screams to be allowed to die. So from the beginning I knew I was in for a relatively boring evening.

And we begin back at Play Pals Inc where a board of old white men have decided that the second spate of Chucky murders is not enough to risk their bottom line, so they are REOPENING THE CHUCKY FACTORY, which is apparently such a frugal venture that they scraped the melted Chucky monster off the floor, dusted the cobwebs off it, and dumped it right back into the machine to be melted down again with the rest of the Chucky goo. Now one would think that this would result in all the dolls in that batch being just a *little* bit serial killery, but no, somehow the entire contents of Floor Chucky end up in a single Good Guys doll that gets taken directly to the CEO’s office as an example of “the Good Guys doll of the 90s.” Cue the murders.

Andy, meanwhile, is now 16 and starting military school, which puts us solidly in the Teen Screams category of horror movies, complete with a Bully, a Hot Chick Who Can Handle Herself Without A Man Thanks, and a Bespectacled Nerd. For some reason, the 6 year-old child of one of the instructors (I guess?) also hangs out on campus and he 1. likes Good Guys dolls and 2. has the judgement of a 6 year-old. So when a Good Guys doll arrives in the mail and he is asked to deliver it to Andy, he instead opens the box himself and starts to play with his new friend without a single concern about the fact that this doll is clearly alive and an asshole. Chucky decides this will be a good opportunity to get a new body without having to deal with Andy, so he tries to start up a voodoo ceremony before getting interrupted and thrown in the garbage, which, for the record, does happen multiple times in every movie.

So now Andy has a child to save and a girl to impress and a bully to fight against and a nerd to….make him look more impressive by comparison I guess. And then yadda yadda he does all that stuff and defeats Chucky, the end. The kills in this one are fine I guess, the most potentially inspiring of which is the result of Chucky switching out all the blank ammunition for a practice battle with live rounds, which could have been DEVASTATING and really cool but instead only gets him a single victim that I don’t think we ever met before. Or maybe we did and I didn’t care because *gestures vaguely at the entirety of Child’s Play 3.* The film also ends with Chucky being shredded into a bajillion tiny Chucky bits by a giant fan, which is fine in and of itself, but I know that Bride of Chucky is next and is set only a month in the future, meaning that somehow over the course of 30 days, those infinite tiny bits coalesce into five or six Chucky chunks which end up in a murder museum (presumably after a stop at the police evidence locker???) for Tiffany to steal and reassemble into a functioning Chucky. Maybe I just don’t understand the physics of the Chuckiverse, or maybe it’s voodoo magic, or maybe I was just meant to forget about it entirely in the eight years between 3 and Bride.

……TWO HORRORS.

Maybe it’s Maybelline.

Child’s Play 3

Child’s Play

It’s fine.

Child’s Play is the OG Chucky film from back in 1988 and it’s about a serial killer who gets shot at a toy store and places his soul in a popular 80’s doll to avoid dying altogether, and then a cash-strapped mother buys the doll from a man in an alley for her kid’s birthday, brings it home, and then Chucky things happen.

I will say I definitely disliked the movie less on this viewing than I have in the past, though that is probably due in part to the fact that the only copy I could find online had Spanish subtitles so I got to learn words like estrangulador and abominacion so that part was definitely worth it. (Which, ps, for being the Lakeshore Strangler Chucky sure does a lot of not strangling. I would say it’s because his tiny doll arms are short and weak but he does choke a police officer towards the end of the movie so maybe he’s just taking advantage of the opportunity to reinvent himself. Like when you go to college and decide THIS time you’re gonna be COOL.) It was also nice to see Brad Dourif’s actual face as he plays the live-action Charles Lee Ray in the opening scene, which I had totally forgotten. And I do have a lot of respect for the actual design of the doll. It has the perfect late-80s look of Ernie from Sesame Street but with overalls and that Cabbage Patch-y face that dominated the whole decade for some reason. It’s exactly what that doll should have looked like.

But generally I feel pretty meh towards the original movie. If you wanna save yourself some time, you can just watch that Zuni doll short from 1975’s Trilogy of Terror and imagine the doll just saying “bitch” a lot.

Anyway, I have shit to do today and this movie merits very little discussion so whatever….TWO AND A HALF HORRORS I GUESS.

I would hope that the sequel will be better but I know it won’t be so I will have to settle for hoping that it’s significantly worse.

Like this terrible doll you can get at Spirit Halloween if you hate yourself and your money

Child’s Play