Day of the Dead: Bloodline

Well, common Google searches, let me tell you! Remember the 1985 movie Day of the Dead by George Romero? That was good movie, wasn’t it. A classic. And you know what we like to do to classics – ruin them with repeated remakes!

Which I guess is technically what Day of the Dead: Bloodline is, despite what the presence of a subtitle implies, and despite the fact that the only character present in both films is (sort of) Miguel Salazar, (unless you count Lady Scientist as a specific character, which I kinda suspect they do). And also despite the fact that the entire plot has virtually nothing in common with the original movie apart from the general setting of “military base.” Tldr, go watch a Romero movie and then don’t watch this. I don’t even want to write about it, but I do very much enjoy a good Complain, so.

I shall now list all the things I hate about this movie.

The first thing I hate about this movie is that Lady Scientist already has her bra showing in the very first scene. Calm your literal tiddies, Bloodline. You haven’t earned the right to throw bras around yet.

The second thing I hate about this movie is that they absolutely had to have Lady Scientist be sexually assaulted by a patient. The patient himself becomes important later on (assuming you give a single shit about what is happening in this movie, which is a pretty thin assumption) but there is exactly zero reason to have this dude try to rape her in a morgue. I am tired, Horror Movies. I would love for you to try harder than to use rape as a shorthand for “this is guy sucks.” This becomes even grosser when the rapey dude becomes the only zombo with some human awareness and function meaning that his would-be victim then has to *advocate for his safety* (in order to use him to do science, but still) and *convince her boyfriend that she doesn’t actually like this rapey bastard who is also a zombie*. Y’ALL. NO ONE WANTS THIS. A better way to accomplish what I assume they were going for would be to have the patient just be a regular boy, which would make his violent turn to zombodom and the relationship between him and Lady Scientist interesting instead of traumatic for the sake of trauma. You know, like…in Day of the Dead. Or do this I guess, I don’t care anymore, I am already tired of this movie.

The third thing I hate about this movie is that we’re not just calling them zombies, we have to call them “rotters.” Guys. You have set the movie in this universe. The concept of zombies already exists. We call basically anyone slow or distracted or dumb a zombie already. Just call them zombies and save the creativity for, I dunno, the plot maybe? I fucking hate this, I don’t even like zombie movies, this hour and a half felt so long.

The fourth thing I hate about this movie is that all establishing or development of characters is rushed to get to the action, which is also rushed. Like….what is the point of this whole thing if it isn’t the story OR the gory zombie fights? We’re just running headlong through a bunch of bullshit to get to the end of the bullshit. Which I do sort of appreciate, because I would very much like to get to the end of the bullshit. But even better would be to not have bullshit in the first place.

The fifth thing I hate about this movie is that only one guy has important blood, which does not a bloodline make. Should have been called Day of the Dead: One Guy’s Special Blood.

The sixth thing I hate about this movie is that it’s on Netflix and actual Day of the Dead isn’t.

I give this mess…….TWO HORRORS BECAUSE IT IS BAD BUT NOT FUN BAD JUST REGULAR BAD.

I am done, just go watch Train to Busan again, we officially don’t need any more zombie movies.

See now THESE are the REAL ZOMBIES hahaha minion emoji
Day of the Dead: Bloodline

Darna Mana Hai

Here we go, number 17 of my 31 for uhhhhh 365 if I’m being honest, and it only took me…five months to revisit! At this rate I’ll be able to just wrap this 31 for 31 into the next Halloween season and it will NEVER NOT BE HALLOWEEN, HURRAY.

Anyway, Darna Mana Hai is an Indian anthology horror film from 2003, and as you all know I LOVE an anthology. I love an anthology for two reasons: one, because it is far easier to make a good horror story last for ten minutes than it is to make one last for ninety minutes, which means anthologies are on the whole more likely to be good than the average feature length horror movie; and two, because it is far easier to watch something terrible for ten minutes than for ninety minutes. These will both be tested in my viewing of Darna Mana Hai.

Darna Mana Hai (which roughly translates to “Fear is Forbidden,” thanks to my friend Manoj for translating what I was too lazy to google) (and it is definitely extremely easy to google) is about a group of Cool Teens who get lost in the woods when their car breaks down and who wander into the forest (????), find an abandoned house, and tell scary stories around a bonfire. After each story (read: anthology short) one Cool Teen at a time decides to walk back to the car (?!?!?!?!) and gets disappeared by a Mysterious Killer until only a couple teens are left. Then they all die the end.

Fortunately for this movie, most of the shorts are marginally better than the cliche and underwhelming wraparound story. Unfortunately for me, this is not true for all of the shorts. Example: the short film Apples is about a guy who sells apples and everyone who eats one of his apples turns into an apple. That’s it. That’s the story. I know my intense fear of saying something mildly awkward at a social gathering wouldn’t make for a great movie either, but is this something people are afraid of? Being an apple sounds pretty chill. Especially if everyone else who might eat an apple is now also an apple.

But I wouldn’t worry about this one too much as it has already been pulled from Netflix in the time it has taken me to write this review, so you won’t even have the option of wasting your time with it. Plus I already spoiled the Apples story for you, so what’s the point.

……TWO HORRORS, IT REALLY WAS NOT GOOD.

But that’s okay, at least now I get to move on to the next one, maybe that one will be AW JEEZ

The link won’t even load, that’s how rotten this tomato is.

Darna Mana Hai

Dark Skies

THANK GOD now that I can stop thinking about the inevitable end of the world for like a second I can get back to my special edition extended 31 for 90-ish (or however long it takes). And luckily the next movie on the list is one of my favorites, which helps because I am SO TIRED THIS WEEK, GUYS.

I watched Dark Skies for the first time several years ago for this project, and it’s stuck with me ever since. If you like alien abduction horror, this is a pretty great example of the genre and, for the first time basically ever, the kids are actually the best part.

Dark Skies is about a painfully white suburban upper middle-class family struggling to maintain that position once the dad loses his job and can no longer afford the MASSIVE house and privileged lifestyle to which they are accustomed. So while Mom and Dad gossip with the neighbors and bicker about shutting off the cable, their two sons tell scary stories to each other over walkie talkies and just generally exemplify a healthy sibling relationship in the face of their parents being kind of garbage.

UNTIL SPOOKY SHIT STARTS HAPPENING.

It starts with things being moved around in the house and photos going missing, and the youngest son starts talking about something coming into his room, telling him secrets, and being creepy, as these things do. But as soon as Dad finally sucks it up and invests in home security, the problems with the youngest son escalate to mysterious behavioral issues and memory loss. Mom mentions maybe taking the kid to therapy because he is CLEARLY not well, but Dad loses his entire mind because THERAPY IS SOOOOO EMBARRASSING AND WHAT WILL THE NEIGHBORS SAY AND ALSO WE CAN’T AFFORD IT AND ALSO THERAPY IS EMBARRASSING AND BAD AND EMBARRASSIIIIIIIIIIING did I mention these parents are objectively bad parents. It’s not until similar things start to happen with the older son as well that the parents agree to GO SEE A DOCTOR, but by that point shit is well and truly fucked.

More weird shit goes down and Mom starts googling to discover that a lot of the recent events can be explained by one thing and one thing only:

And then the rest of the movie happens.

Okay so I am doing a very bad and lazy job of describing this movie because this election week has ruined my ability to think good and do words, and also because I don’t actually want to include spoilers of all the good parts because I do want people to see this one. So while the premise of “weird things happen to family and it’s aliens” sounds pretty basic, you’ll just have to trust me when I say it’s better than that. It’s successfully spooky and the scares still get me even on the third viewing, and the cast is very good at pulling it all off. (And JK Simmons shows up as the expert on aliens because of course he does.) At the end of the day I’m not entirely sure why I love this movie so much, but I really do. It’s well-executed, tells a good story, and the climax at the end just sticks in my head for some reason. Because of how good it is? Or whatever.

Boy what a great review I have written.

I don’t have the energy or brains to tell you why but…FIVE HORRORS BECAUSE I JUST LIKE IT.

THING IS GOOD

Dark Skies

Dark Light

This one’s in English! Finally, a movie I can watch while scrolling through garbage on my phone. My favorite.

Dark Light is a 2019 sci-fi horror movie, which is one of my favorite types of horror movie. I will vote for spooky aliens over vampires and werewolves any day. BUT WAIT ARE THERE SPOOKY ALIENS THOUGH? Because Dark Light is about a woman named Annie moving back to her childhood home with her young daughter after a “breakdown” related to a non-specific hereditary mental illness, which means that literally anything she has concerns about is invalidated. NEAT. It does not help that the only resource she can find to validate her claims of spooky activity is some kind of angelfire black-background-white-comic-sans-text bullshit run by a beardy nerd, which frankly makes me wish she had just put cameras around the house like every other horror family does.

Because the better evidence is that the house is in a CORNFIELD, which means that there MUST be spooky aliens because THAT IS THEIR JAM. Children of the Corn, Signs, A Quiet Place, as a horror fan I know that every corn field holds Eldritch horrors beyond imagination but this Sheriff keeps showing up and insisting that it’s “kids with flashlights” like some fucking noob who’s probably going to get her head ripped apart by spooky aliens later. OR WILL SHE she will. Also the Sheriff is a lady! Hurray equality! And all her rural white male employees respect and listen to her. Haha, this is truly science fiction.

Except ah shit wait there are indeed spooky aliens, and they have taken Annie’s daughter for….food? According to Angelfire McBeardo’s video, these are not actually aliens, but creatures indigenous to Earth who creep up out of cornfields to collect children, who have the tastiest life force of all the humans. So when Annie easily escapes from custody (which, yikes, this police force has some major issues to work out, PROBABLY CUZ THEY HAVE A WOMAN SHERIFF, AMIRITE) where does she go to save her daughter? That’s correct, she makes a beeline for Angelfire’s house, because if there’s anything I know, it’s that a bearded white dude on the internet whose opinions are not allowed on mainstream social media must know too much truth.

This goes very wrong like immediately, leaving Annie locked in McBeardo’s basement while aliens are out there snacking on her daughter’s delicious life force and Lady Sheriff is hunting around for THE WOMAN SHE BELIEVES IS A CHILD MURDERER who just kinda wandered out of the crashed transfer van and went on her merry way a few hours ago. Will Annie save her daughter from being an alien meal? Will McBeardo finally get MUFON to listen to him? Will Lady Sheriff get her escaped criminal back in custody or will she get aliened to death right in the head? WHO CAN SAY.

What I can say is that this movie is not necessarily good. There’s a lot that doesn’t make sense, for example, the fact that Annie started out by seeing small ghosty-type shenanigans in the house (opening doors, things moving, etc) and when we finally see the aliens they are eight foot tall living flashlights who couldn’t be sneaky if they tried. Or how Angelfire McBeardo listens to Annie’s story and the FIRST THING he does is drag her to his basement saying “NOW I HAVE PROOF HAHA” as if 1. a stranger coming to your house and saying she saw aliens is proof and 2. locking the only person who agrees with you in your basement will lend credibility to your argument. The police WILDLY ignore any sort of legal regulations and haha nevermind that’s pretty normal.

But the movie is kinda fun. The creatures are pretty great, and I just spent the whole film thinking “MAN I would love to play this video game.” It has all the best video game locations, police warehouse, river just outside of town with submerged vehicles, creepy house, corn, and both trying to convince people that the aliens are real and killing the shit out of piles of aliens would be SO. MUCH. FUN. If the Dark Light people are reading, please call the Last of Us team and get them to work on this, they’re not busy right now.

So I’m giving the movie……THREE HORRORS.

Video game would get 10/10 though.

also I would like a corn monster minigame please and thank you
Dark Light

Dark Forces

Hey, did you know that trying to do literally anything during a global pandemic is a real fuckin drag? Anyway, that’s what I’m blaming for my inability to keep up with this blog this time around. But I’m not letting myself off the hook until I’ve watched and reviewed 31 terrible Netflix horror movies, so if it takes me until Christmas to get through this Halloween season so be it. This whole year is garbage so I’m going to make the spooky times last. I’m basically doing you a favor by not using it all up all at once. You’re welcome.

ANYWAY speaking of terrible Netflix horror, boy howdy do I have a treat for you! Dark Forces is a Mexican horror movie from THIS YEAR done in an 80s-inspired noir style, kind of like if cyberpunk were neither cyber nor punk but also sometimes the women wear victory rolls. Our hero is a mustachioed man named Franco who has come to sex around a weird hotel until he finds his missing sister. Everything in this film is sloooooow and seeexxxxy, provided you are attracted to mustaches and excessive fog machine action with jewel-toned lighting for *atmosphere*. He meets several Sexy Brunettes on his adventure, including Sexy Front Desk Lady, Sexy Lady in the Room Next Door, and Sexy Lady Who Sings Down the Hall. All of these women look the same to me and I have only the vaguest understanding of which one actually ended up being important. I think it was Sexy Next Door.

In which case, it is definitely Sexy Next Door who, after Mustache saves her from her mean boyfriend, decides she wants to 1. slowly rub her bloody lip all over Mustache’s mustache in a slooooow and seeexxxxy way and 2. help him do crimes to find his sister. Why are crimes necessary to find his sister you might ask? Because that is what the wizard at the end of the hallway said to do and he knows because he wrote a wizard book called Dark Forces. (Ps, it’s actually Fuego Negro which means Black Fire which is a way cooler name? And also would have meant I wouldn’t have had to watch this very bad movie right now.) And I’m calling him Wizard because he has a terrible Spirit Halloween bald cap/long white hair wig and owns candles and shit even though there is so little context in this film I have no idea who he actually is or why he’s there. Mustache takes his advice with absolutely zero questions asked and goes a’crimin with his new sexy girlfriend.

And Sexy Girlfriend just gets SO TURNED ON BY DOING CRIMES Y’ALL. She gets all excited and we are treated to a bunch of seeeexxxxxxy sex scenes while Mustache has a bunch of ‘Nam flashbacks that make him wonder if this woman is actually on his side, but that will absolutely not stop him from having two more sex scenes with her before this movie is over.

But wait, there’s ALSO an Albino Lady on the roof who is ~*mysterious*~ and knows things and if you pay her mother $2,000 she can tell you the things she knows, like where your missing sister is! So….let’s do that I guess, since it’s so convenient. And then go hunt around a crime syndicate looking for Mustache’s old boss. And…have sex dreams about Wizard? I do not understand this movie even a little bit.

The point is that there is a demon thing inside Wizard shaped exactly like a double-ended dildo that you vomit out of your mouth directly into someone else’s to capture their soul or whatever. Anyway. That’s where I’m done reviewing this movie.

I’m torn about what to give it but…..THREE HORRORS because it’s so bad it barely deserves 2 but I had the right combination of wine and edibles that gave me the enjoyment of a 4. You can absolutely MST3K your way through this thing and have a grand time but jesus christ is it bad. Results may vary, view at your own risk.

10/10 for the mustache though
Dark Forces

Seed of Chucky

I TAKE IT ALL BACK FUCK THIS WHOLE FRANCHISE.

WHAT THE HELL DID I JUST WATCH.

Here I was all “oh, Jennifer Tilly will probably be back in this one, that’ll be nice” and THEN SEED OF CHUCKY HAPPENED.

I am not doing a synopsis of this movie because IT IS NOT POSSIBLE so instead I’m just going to list a few of the things that happen here in no particular order because I CANNOT THINK ABOUT THIS MOVIE FOR A SINGLE SECOND LONGER THAN I HAVE TO. So please enjoy this list of actual horrors so that I may delete this entire thing from my memory banks:

  • John Fucking Waters is in this movie.
  • Jennifer Tilly is also in this movie, as both the Tiffany doll and as HERSELF, REAL JENNIFER TILLY. She gets roasted so hard and is absolutely brilliant about it. I would happily rewatch this movie with only her scenes in it. I mean sort of. No I wouldn’t.
  • Redman is in this movie, also as himself, and he’s directing a movie called “The Virgin Mary.” You know, like Def Jam rapper Redman would do. He is also brilliant and is mostly in scenes with Jennifer Tilly, making those scenes a sweet safe haven for my ruined mind meats.
  • The voodoo puppet child of Tiffany and Chucky from the end of Bride is in this one and THE DOLL IS ABSOLUTELY HORRIFYING TO LOOK AT. I HATE IT SO MUCH.
  • The child is named Glen and prefers he/him pronouns but is canonically nonbinary? In a way that alternates between positive representation and VERY BAD REPRESENTATION. I’m not even touching this topic.
  • We have to watch Chucky masturbate into a cup. For like A LONG TIME.
  • We have to see an ENTIRE CUP of puppet jizz.
  • That cup of puppet jizz is sucked into a turkey baster and used to ARTIFICIALLY INSEMINATE ACTUAL JENNIFER TILLY.
  • Tiffany and Chucky attempt to quit murdering using the methods of Alcoholics Anonymous. It does not work.
  • Glen is still just awful, this whole time. It DOES NOT STOP.
  • Chucky kills Britney Spears by running her off the road in Redman’s stolen car. They could not get actual Britney Spears for this, for some reason. She must have been busy.
  • Actual Jennifer Tilly becomes pregnant overnight and gives birth to fraternal twins MADE FROM CHUCKY SPERM. The Tiffany doll acts as midwife.
  • Chucky decides he actually likes being a doll because dolls are immortal. That’s the exact opposite of what we’ve been told this whole series but okay.
  • I STILL HATE GLEN AND NOW HE IS A MURDEROUS DRAG QUEEN SOMETIMES I GUESS.
  • Tiffany takes over Jennifer Tilly’s body because she loves her so much. I like this.
  • DOLL FIGHT.
  • Jennifer Tilly’s two horrible red-headed murder children grow up and are never ever seen or heard from ever again. Including Glen, thank christ.

ZERO HORRORS BECAUSE THIS IS NOT A HORROR MOVIE THIS IS A FEVER DREAM FROM WHICH I WILL NEVER AWAKEN BECAUSE THE EVENTS OF SEED OF CHUCKY HAVE SEARED THEMSELVES INTO MY DELICATE BRAIN AND I WILL NEVER GET AWAY NO MATTER HOW MANY MORE MOVIES I WATCH. SEED OF CHUCKY WILL ALWAYS BE THERE. SEED OF CHUCKY HAS ALWAYS BEEN THERE. SEED OF CHUCKY IS ETERNAL. SEED OF CHUCKY IS THE ABYSS.

THIS FUCKING DOLL HAUNTS ME

Seed of Chucky

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

Bride of Chucky

THE YEAR: 1998.

THE CAST: Brad Dourif back on his bullshit, the incomparable Jennifer Tilly with her adorable voice and her horror movie star titties, a pre-Grey’s Anatomy Katherine Heigl, a pre-dead John Ritter at his John Ritter best, a gothy, trashy Alexis Arquette (who, if you’ll recall, had my very favorite line in Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror), and, the one you’ve all been waiting for, Gordon Michael Woolvett, yes, THE Gordon Michael Woolvett, best known for portraying ship’s engineer Seamus Harper on Kevin Sorbo’s Andromeda in the mid-2000s, in Canada. I LOVE YOU, ANDROMEDA BOY, AND I ALWAYS WILL.

Jennifer Tilly plays Tiffany, a serial killer just starting out and hoping to reunite with her old boyfriend Charles Lee Ray, who just happens to be the serial killer trapped in the Good Guy doll known as Chucky. She busts the broken doll out of the local murder museum (jealous), sews him up, and voodoos him back to life with some vaguely Latin chanting over a pentagram surrounded by candles, because the Chucky team does not know what voodoo is. The doll awakens, kills Alexis Arquette (sorry, girl), and immediately starts being shitty to Tiffany, who thought they would be getting married. Tiffany stuffs Chucky into a playpen and gives him a bride doll since he won’t commit to marrying HOT TITTIED HUMAN WOMAN JENNIFER TILLY, and then goes to take a bubble bath and watch Bride of Frankenstein. Not a joke. Chucky busts out, dumps the television into the tub thereby electrocuting Tiffany, and does some more “voodoo” to put her soul into the bride doll. And now we have Bride of Chucky.

But, oh wait, MEANWHILST, Officer John Ritter does not like that his high school daughter Katherine Heigl is dating some anonymous late 90s guy and uses his power as a cop (THEY ARE ALL BASTARDS) to fuck with them. Also Heigl’s gay bestie is Gordon Michael Woolvett. 90s Boyfriend is desperate and just happens to live in the same trailer park as Tiffany, who now needs a ride to the New Jersey cemetery where Charles Lee Ray is buried because that’s where the “voodoo” amulet to turn both her and Chucky back into humans is buried along with him, but now they are dolls and can’t drive. (Seems like something Human Woman Jennifer Tilly could have helped with, but dumb shitty Chucky can’t deal with his feelings in a responsible way so he just HAD to lash out and make her a doll too. *eyeroll emoji* I would say he could use therapy but the quality of the therapists in this franchise has been suspect so maybe unspecified Hollywood satanism is his best bet, who am I.)

So Tiffany calls 90s boyfriend and offers him $1000 to deliver these two dolls to New Jersey, half up front and half upon completion. And because it’s 1998, $1000 is enough to START A NEW LIFE I GUESS so 90s Boyfriend decides this is how he and Katherine Heigl can get married and live together far from Dad Ritter and takes the deal. So now we have two high schoolers running from the law on a road trip with two secret murder dolls and damn if that isn’t THE BEST SHIT.

The success of this movie (and fuck yes is it a success) is fully on the shoulders of these two doll puppets and the fun kills they do, and they do a GREAT job. I’ve got to say, this is another case where two dolls are infinitely better than one. I didn’t realize how much of this movie would be two doll puppets getting into highly choreographed fight scenes, making out and having weird puppet sex, doing cool murders, *~falling in love again~*. And it’s the best thing I’ve ever seen. 10/10 for the doll puppets, Brad Dourif, and Jennifer Tilly. Incredible. No notes.

Also this soundtrack is the MOST 1998 horror movie soundtrack I can imagine. Rob Zombie, Judas Priest, Type O Negative, Motorhead, Slayer, FUCKING CHEF’S KISS. There is just so much joy in this installment being exactly what it should have been, dumb and fun and *fucking rock n roll man*.

Plus I now realize how much of Cult of Chucky was clever callbacks and self-referential bullshit which, I’m sorry, I fucking love. Even one of the kills in Cult harkens back to an amazing water bed murder Tiffany commits in Bride, and I am impressed. How far back do these jokes go? Did they start with Bride? Or does Bride represent a decade of callbacks coming all the way from Child’s Play? Only time will tell. And that time is later tonight, because I hate myself.

Y’all, Bride of Chucky is fucking rad……SOLID FOUR HORRORS.

That said, I am getting the distinct feeling that this will be my favorite installment in the Chucky franchise and that it will be a sharp downturn from here on out, which is unfortunate because I still have five more movies to watch. But Chucky has proved me wrong before, and the knowledge that I have at LEAST one more movie with Tiffany in it will keep me going. Because that doll is great and I love to watch her serial kill.

Shine on, you crazy diamond.

Bride of Chucky