Sunday, 24 July 2011

Child's Play 2 - Terror Toys Season

Child's Play 2 was released in 1990, two years after the original film.  It did well in terms of box office revenue and was received well by fans.  Alex Vincent returns as Andy and Brad Dourif returns as the voice of Chucky, as far as I am aware from the blurb at the top of wikipedia, they are the only returning cast members, but this was the film which sparked a huge merchandise push for the franchise.

Warning, this is a spoiler based review


Like the first film, I haven't seen this yet, but I have a sense of apprehension about watching it, due it to always being a banned topic of discussion in our house as well as numerous rumours to it being banned as I was growing up.  However, typing that isn't helping to put off the experience any longer so I better load up the film and press play.

I have the feeling this copy might have a few seconds shaved off the start as I get a spinning eyeball and a music score already in progress.  This is the surviving eyeball of the melted Chucky head from the previous film and a person unknown pries it out of the head with a knife.  These shots are intersected with shots of a car and the city.  The knife then starts to scrape the bad burny bits from the doll, then scraping the dolls teeth and then polishing up the metal beneath. 

Top notch doll dentistry
In the previous movie, it was pretty clear that Chucky did not have a metal head and body beneath the plastic, but I'll let them off this one bit of discontinuity, this is the one shot you get, movie, make sure you aren't wasting it.  Then a lady fits a new head skin over the top, then someone places a white mask and spray paints it, adding eyebrows, eyelashes and freckles to it's skin.  Is that how they do that?  Then we see a new body being assembled and the head, with wig is attacked and batteries are fitted to the back before clothes are finally added.  We then see the limo we've been getting shots of arrive at the Play Pals Toys factory, where they make the Good Guys dolls.  (According to the sign.)

Greg Germann helps a white haired man out of the limo who is concerned about a meeting with stock holders.  So get a helpful info dump explaining what's happened since the events of the last movie, Andy's story hit the tabloids and went national, the police denied everything, Norris, you twat.  Karen, backing up Andy was sent for a psych evaluation, leaving Andy in a care home.  They think that someone must have tampered with the dolls voice cassette and recorded joke messages to get them into trouble. 

The good news is that they now have the doll and have rebuilt it, it was supposed to be working perfectly, Greg hands the white haired man a folder with a report in it to please the stock holders, though the white haired man wants to see the doll for himself.  The last thing to be added in are the dolls eyeballs, the machine won't work properly so the technician hits it, which causes, and I'm guessing here, Chucky to get zapped with electricity which will probably bring him back to life.

Because this doesn't look normal.
This electrocutes the technician to death, but before he finally dies, flings himself across the room and into the window.  Drama Queen.

Then we go to Andy who is playing a child's card game with a bald dude, the bald dude wants to talk about Chucky, but Andy doesn't want to, the bald dude tells him talking will help the nightmares go away.  Andy recounts the story of Chucky, though of course, he isn't believed.  Back at the factory, ambulances arrive for the tech and the white haired man tells Greg to insert the Chucky doll into his rectum.  Charming.

Back with Andy, some woman is telling a couple about Andy being traumatised by the murders and needs someone to foster him, the woman is all keen, but the bloke is dubious.  They agree to take him anyway.  In car the couple, Joanne and Phil, ask Andy what he likes to eat and say they should stop by the shop on their way home.  Joanne is Jessica from Logan's Run, SQUEE!

Jumpers supplied by the Cosby family
Not paying attention to the road, Phil almost drives into a Play Pals truck which scares Andy.  They arrive at the house and Andy takes a look around, it's full of antiques and old stuff and they tell Andy not to touch the family heirlooms, a very pretty figure of a lady wearing a blue dress is noted in particular as it has been in Joanne's family for years.  They tell Andy to go upstairs, which he does and is drawn to the first room as he hears music coming from it.  He opens the door and a teenage girl inside complains about him not knocking, Joanne comes in and tells the girl, Kyle, that she shouldn't be smoking inside the house.  Also that she's been there for three weeks and hasn't unpacked yet, Kyle says there's no point as she's never stayed anywhere longer than a month.  Joanne tells her to unpack and then come help with dinner, Kyle says she has to work, Joanne complains that this is the third night in a row, but Kyle says she'll need the money for the next year when she's out of the system.  Joanne tells her that until then, she's with them and would appreciate her spending time with the family.

Joanne takes Andy to his room and tells him she made the curtains just for him.  Andy runs straight to the toy chest and starts looking at the toys, pleased, Joanne tells him there's more toys in the closet and tells they can explore the back yard later and that there's plenty of kids in the neighbourhood to make friends with.  I really like this character, she seems to genuinely care for the kids and wants to help.  Andy goes to the closet and looks at a skateboard, he goes to pull it down and it falls on him, bringing a Good Guys doll along with it.

Smart move, guys
Andy tries to run away and Phil tells him off for running.  Joanne grabs the doll which starts to talk and quickly runs it out of the room.  Meanwhile, Greg goes to his car in the rain and puts the Chucky doll in the boot, but it won't close so he throws it into the back seat.  He makes a call on his car phone, oh man, it's been so long since I've seen a car phone in a movie.  He makes a call to Gabriella who tells him to get vodka for their two week anniversary, classy.  Greg runs to a liquor shop, leaving Chucky in the car, Chucky eyes the car phone.

We cut back to the care home where the phone rings, guess who?  Chucky tells the woman that he's looking for Andy, he's his Uncle Charles.  Not very imaginative are we, Chucky?  Inside the shop, Greg tries to pay with a credit card, but the shop only takes cash.  Wow, 21 years later and people wonder why certain shops still bother with a cash drawer at all.  Greg's car alarm starts going off and he goes out to check his car, Chucky is nowhere to be seen, he gets in and drives off.

You're going to drive me to Toys R Us, I want me some Tiny Tears action.
Chucky jumps up and holds what I believe (it's dark) is a small gun against Greg's face, Chucky tells him to drive and makes him drive to a car park.  Chucky ties Greg's hands with a skipping rope and Greg begs for his life, Chucky squirts him with the gun which turns out to have been a water pistol.  then he suffocates Greg with a plastic bag, killing him.

Chucky runs in POV to the house, in Andy's room Joanne reads him a bed time story when she decides he's had enough Hansel and Gretal, he asks Joanne not to leave and to sing to him because he misses his mother.  Downstairs, Chucky runs into the other Good Guys doll and since it starts talking, he hits it over the head with the ornament from earlier.  Andy hears something and Joanne tells him it was nothing as Chucky smashes both the ornament and toy and then takes the latter outside to bury in the garden, laughing maniacally. 


At the breakfast table the next morning, Phil accuses Kyle and Andy of breaking Joanne's ornament, telling them that one of them owes her an apology.  Both of them declare their innocence because they are, Phil tells them until one of them confesses they are both grounded.  Kyle gripes to Andy whilst doing laundry about being stuck inside all day, Andy again professes his innocence, but makes Kyle laugh by telling her a joke.  She asks him to hold her cigarette, which he tries and she tells him off, saying that it's for grown ups.  She asks Andy to help her pin up her clothes, Andy says that Phil is kind of grumpy, understatement, Kyle says he isn't so bad. 

Upstairs, Phil says he isn't happy about Andy because he isn't perfectly fixed over the murder thing and needs more attention, Joanne tells him she likes Andy.  Andy overhears this.  He goes into the living room where Chucky is sat and tells him he hates him, Chucky spouts one of the dolls phrases, but forgets what the other dolls name was for a second and looks to the side as he remembers it was Tommy.  Andy checks to make sure there was batteries in the inside, then takes the doll outside with him. 


In a somewhat sweet scene, as Kyle does some gardening, Andy sits on a swing and asks her if she misses her parents, Kyle says that she never really knew her parents and therefore can't miss them.  Her Dad left before she was born and her mother put her up for adoption at three.  Kyle sits on the swing and Andy pushes her and they play together, Chucky watches as Kyle kicks the ground where he buried Tommy.  Phil calls them for dinner and Andy brings Chucky inside with him. 

That night, Chucky watches Andy as he sleeps, Joanne sits at her sewing machine, making something for Kyle.  She wants to get something for Andy, Phil suggests a valium.  Because he's a dick.

"Did ya miss me, Andy?  I sure missed you!"
Andy wakes up in his room with his hands and feet ties to the bed and his mouth stuffed with a sock, Chucky tells Andy that he missed him and that he told him they'd be friends to the end and now it's time to play.  Chucky begins to chant his voodoo spell, but Kyle is at the window, so Chucky tells Andy that the next time he's alone, he'll get him.  Kyle climbs in the window and pulls the gag out of his mouth and even though he is tied to the bed, when Joanne and Phil enter the room, no one believes him when he says that Chucky did it, Phil accuses Kyle of doing it, but Andy reiterates that it was Chucky.

Phil says he's had enough and takes Chucky out of the room, Andy tries to warn Phil, Phil throws Chucky down the stairs of the cellar and tells Andy he won't bother him again.  After Phil shuts the door, Chucky notices he has a nose bleed and laments that he's becoming human again and if he doesn't get out of the body soon then he's screwed.

The next morning Kyle and Andy head off for school.  I like that Kyle has instantly taken to Andy as a little brother figure.  Kyle asks him how he got tied up, Andy tells her that she's just like everyone else and that no one believes him.  Andy gets on the bus and Kyle is met by friends.  As the school bus drives away we see Chucky climbing aboard.  At play time, Andy throws a ball against the fence, in the classroom Chucky searches for something.  We transition to the lesson.

Beth Grant, completely underrated actress
The teacher is recounting the story of Pinnochio to the children, they watch fascinated, though a bully flicks Andy's ear and Andy gets the blame for disrupting the class.  The bell rings and the children tidy away their things while the teacher looks over the children's work, finding Andy's which Chucky has scrawled 'FUCK YOU BITCH' across in red crayon.  Andy finds Chucky in the cupboard and starts to freak out, but the teacher grabs him and shows him the paper, which of course Andy denies doing. 

She grabs Chucky and locks him in a storage closet and then tells Andy to sit at a desk and put his head down before locking him in the classroom, bloody hell 1990 American school system, could you actually do that?  Andy goes to the closet to check it's locked and Chucky shouts PEEKABOO, then shouts at Andy to let him out, Andy escapes through the classroom window.  The teacher returns to the classroom to find Andy gone and for some reason thinks he's in the closet that she locked, because the handle is shaking.  She tells Andy to come out of the closet.  Tee hee.

She opens it and of course Andy isn't in there, she looks for him behind racks of clothes which are there for some reason.  Then a ball lands on her and as she reaches up to place it back on the shelf, Chucky stabs her with an air pump.

Surprise!
She falls back out of the closet into some desks and Chucky comes after her with a ruler and beats her with it.  At home, Andy tries to tell Joanne and Phil about Chucky, of course they don't believe him.  Phil opens the door to the basement and shows Andy Chucky lying on the floor and verbally abuses him. 

Joanne and Phil argue about keeping Andy.  Phil's a dick. 

Kyle comes to comfort Andy about being sent away because she's been with a lot of different families.  She tells him that he's the only person he can count on.  Andy tells her it doesn't matter because where ever he goes, Chucky will find him.

Andy grabs an electric knife, which was left plugged in on the counter, he goes to the basement, Chucky has moved from his spot, forcing Andy to go downstairs to find him.  There's all sorts of deadly implements in the basement, Andy hears a spinning wheel move and it scares him, he looks around more and we see Chucky's shadow run behind him.  Andy hears this and looks, but Chucky has gone, then Chucky drops on him and Andy loses the knife.  Chucky starts biting his ear. 

Upstairs, Phil hears something and goes to investigate, in the basement Andy manages to grab the knife and Chucky runs just as Phil arrives, telling Andy to put the knife down.  Chucky pulls down Phil through the stairs using a hook and he finally sees Chucky, Chucky lets go and Phil falls, breaking his neck, just as Joanne and Kyle arrive.

Farewell Phil the dick.
Kyle runs to calls an ambulance and Joanne tells Andy to get away from her.  The ambulance arrives to take away Phil's body and Joanne packs Andy's things whilst Kyle tries to comfort her.  The care home lady is there for Andy and Kyle brings him his suitcase.  Andy warns Kyle that Chucky is still in the cellar. 

Two police officers ask Kyle questions in the basement and she grabs the Chucky doll and takes it outside, putting him in the bin.  She sits on the swing smoking a cigarette and her feet kick at the ground, gradually exposing the foot of the broken Tommy doll which she pulls out of the dirt.  She looks at the bin, suddenly afraid and walks towards it slowly, finding that Chucky has gone. 

Kyle goes inside the house and from the cupboard grabs a dagger from a box, as she walks upstairs a ball of wool is untangled and running along the carpet.  She makes her way slowly to Joanne's room where she sees Joanne sitting at her sewing machine, not moving. 

Don't worry, tomato sauce washes off easily
Joanne has been killed by Chucky, Kyle sits on the bed, in shock and is grabbed from behind by Chucky, she reaches for a lamp and hits him with it and he disappears.  She goes to grab her dagger, but Chucky grabs it from beneath the bed, then he trips her over.  He makes Kyle drive him to the care home, she isn't too freaked out about it, a police car puts on it's sirens, Chucky tells her to floor it, but Kyle tells him to 'get real' as they're driving a station wagon.  Chucky resigns to allowing her to pull over and goes into doll mode.

The police officer asks to see her license and asks why she was doing 60 in a 45 zone, then he notices Chucky and gets excited because he likes the Good Guys dolls.  He asks his name and Chucky tells him, but then his nose starts bleeding and the officer notices.  (In the wide shot, it so isn't bleeding.)   Kyle tells the officer that the doll bleeds instead of peeing, the officer tells her to slow down and buckle up, as he leaves, Chucky tells her to get going.

In the care home, Andy is put to bed, but as the lady leaves Andy starts going through his suitcase.  Chucky tells Kyle to drive faster and she buckles up, then slams on the breaks, sending Chucky flying through the window, she can't see him, then he jumps up on the bonnet so she slams him into a fence and then tries to run him over again, but Chucky moves at the last second.  Unable to see Chucky, Kyle gets out of the car, but is grabbed by Chucky.

Play time's over.
The the care home an alarm goes off and the children start heading out of the building, Andy sees Kyle and Chucky waiting for him at the bottom of the stairs.  The Care Home woman shows up and asks Kyle what she's doing there and brings her into her office, she grabs Chucky and Chucky stabs her, then as Kyle tries to grab Andy, Chucky locks her out of the room, trapping Andy. 

Chucky makes Andy carry him out of the building and onto the back of a newspaper van, Kyle gets the door open, but sees that Andy has left via the window and chases after the van as it drives off.  She gets into the car which has some difficulty starting.  In the van, Chucky tries to start the voodoo ritual, but Kyle catches up and starts beeping the driver to pull over, eventually making him stop with the car, she looks in the back, but andy and Chucky are gone.  The van driver grabs her and she sees Andy running, she breaks free and chases. 

This is going to be like finding a needle in a stack of needles
We see that Andy and Chucky are at the Play Pals factory and Kyle just makes it under the shutter in time as it closes.  Chucky makes Andy wander through the factory and then knocks him out, he begins his voodoo ritual again and the thunder and lightning begins above the factory. 

Then it stops and Andy looks at Chucky whose nose begins bleeding, Chucky screams as he realises he's spent too long in his doll body and is now trapped.  Kyle pushes over a stack of dolls on Chucky, allowing Andy to escape, Kyle grabs him and they try and make their way through the maze of boxes, but keep running into dead ends.  

They eventually make it to the chute where the dolls come out, Kyle climbs up and Andy comes up behind her, it's a difficult climb as it's a big slope and Andy falls down, with Chucky there to greet him.  Andy begins climbing again and Chucky is right behind him.  As soon as Andy gets free, Kyle drops the lock on the chute, trapping Chucky, forcing him to rip off his hand to get free.

Kyle and Andy make it to the assembly line and have to climb past the eye insertion machine to get to an exit.  Chucky jabs the handle of the dagger, which he still has, into the stump of his arm, which from his face, hurts a bit. 

Making him now somewhat like Blade from Puppet Master
The eye insertion machine backs up and a tech guy hears an alarm and goes to fix it.  Kyle and Andy stare at a machine and Kyle pulls Andy away before hot plastic drips on his head.  The tech guy climbs into the eye machine to fix it, and as he gets it working again, Chucky hits him and knocks him into the machine.

Oh eye say!
The other machines start to break down and Andy accidentally causes one to run backwards which glues many arms and legs to one doll.  Chucky appears behind them and they seal him to the conveyor belt and send him backwards into the machine.  Chucky screams for his life and they bring him back out again in a puddley, melty mess. 

I don't think this is going to go down well with the 6-10 demographic
As Kyle and Andy start to leave we see a blood trail on the floor, then the tech guy who is tied up by his legs, swings into Kyle, kocking her to the ground.  Chucky then appears, well, his top half does, pushing himself along on a wheeled box bleeding and broken.  Andy tricks Chucky into getting his knife hand stuck in a vent and Andy pours the red hot plastic on top of Chucky's head, then rescues Kyle from being sucked into a machine. 

They inspect the melted pile of plastic, but Chucky jumps up and Kyle shooves the plastic nozzle into his mouth and Chucky explodes.  They open the shutter door and it's day time outside the Play Pals factory.  Kyle tells Andy they are going home, Andy asks where that is and Kyle tells him she has no idea.  End of Movie.

Summary:  Well, I actually think this was better in some ways than the first one and worse in others.  I know it's a pain when actors don't want to return, but having Andy in this setting with no one to believe him for the first 50 minutes of the movie is a bit annoying.  It might have been good if they could have got back Norris or the other cop, for a short scene, only for them to be killed by Chucky.  Just so Andy had someone to believe him and we weren't rehashing the first film again.

Brad Dourif's performance in this one, is most certainly better, not that his performance in the first film was bad, far from it, by this instalment however he's really got a feel for the character and voices it throughout and we get to see a lot more of the scary Chucky. 

Andy was good again, however, they didn't really give him an emotional scene to play as they did in the first film and I think the film is poorer for it.  Beth Grant is shockingly underused and it would have been great if they could have given her more screen time.

The characters of Joanne and Phil are interesting, Phil's a dick, Joanne is a genuinely caring person, however, because she's such a likeable character, they had to make her turn against Andy so you weren't too upset when Chucky killed her.  I think it would have been better if Joanne had seen Chucky, believed Andy, then been killed, so Andy loses a confidant as quickly as he gained one. 

Kyle is well played against Andy, she has some great scenes with him and you really get to like her character and she slips between troubled teen and action girl very well. 

I thought there was a couple of silly deaths and some dodgy effects shots.  They didn't utilise putting someone in a Chucky mask in this film, which was so effective in the first film at making his movements look so realistic. 

The metal parts from the beginning of the film never really came into play and since they were a stretch of the imagination in the first place, I'm going to call them pointless. 

Ultimately it comes down to two things, 1 - did it scare me?  No, not really.  2 - Did I enjoy it?  Yes, yes I did.  I actually probably enjoyed it more than the first one, but it loses out a little on some of the points I made above.

8 out of 10

1 comment:

  1. I agree completely.Part 2 was very enjoyable.1 was slightly better.I loved the romp through the factory in the end though.

    ReplyDelete