Because People Watch These Movies for the Humans – Curse of the Puppet Master (1998)

Remember when this series was about killer puppets?  Being that three movies of continuous story would be asking too much, we flashback to yet another prequel, taking place before 4, but after 1.  We have a brand new cast of human characters, as the puppets have been bought in an auction by the Magrew family of two.  They go on to adopt a boy (Josh Green), who doesn’t have much going on upstairs, but is a world-class carver.  You see where this is going.  I momentarily got my hopes up for this, because looking at the IMDb page, they brought back the director of what is easily the best Puppet Master movie, Toulon’s Revenge.  At least we know we’re getting a director that can calm down, focus on the story and give the aud…

Victoria SloanBamboozled again.

He must have known that he was dealing with a turkey here, hence the pseudonym (or he might just like cross-dressing, as he credited as being Mary Crawford in the smash hit A Talking Cat?!?).  This series has the tendency to get way off track, and I completely blame 4 for turning these puppets into adorable pets; they’re essentially viewed now as small dogs, where they will attack an outside threat if absolutely necessary, but for the most part, they exist so you can have something to cuddle to sleep and to do circus tricks.  For example, do you know how long you have to wait to get your first puppet death?  It doesn’t arrive until the 51 minute mark.  Even then, it’s not somebody you sympathize with, as it is somebody who is body building solely so he can (and I am not making this up) be a better rapist.  In total, there are 4 puppet deaths, and while they are some of the better kills of the series (which I do award points for), it’s just surrounded by a whole lot of nothing.  Why would you focus more on the human characters?  The puppets have more personality than the human characters, and they don’t even talk.  Most of the puppets return, but they don’t give Leech Woman a single thing to do, as there are only so many kills to go around (I realize that I may sound like a blood thirsty maniac, but this is literally the only thing this series has going for it).

leech womanWith an effect that is this unsettling, you think that you would go out of your way to feature it more.

Also, what the hell happened to Torch?  They keep showing him in the archive footage, and he is one of the best designed puppets.  Did they break him and not have the budget to get him repaired? They probably would have been better off leaving 5 as the “final” chapter.  The acting is poor, even by Puppet Master standards and if this movie does anything, it makes the other movies look better by comparison.

Curse of the Puppet Master (1998) **

– Critic for Hire


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