The 1980’s was an important decade for the Horror movie genre. Many films including Friday The 13th, Hellraiser, & Nightmare On Elm Street, became instant classics due to its main antagonist, backstories, and of course, the bloodbath for each series. One of the most iconic villain in the Horror genre is Chucky from the “Child’s Play” series.
The first installment was released in 1988. (same year Die Hard came out) It went became a critical commercial success. Siskel & Ebert gave the film 3 out of 4 stars, while Leonard Maltin praised the movie for its special effects. Encouraged by the success of the first film, Don Mancini (the creator of Chucky) went on to write three more sequels and also directed Chucky related films including “Seed Of Chucky,” “Curse Of Chucky” and the upcoming 7th entry, “Cult Of Chucky.”
I thought about sharing this review to get ready for the future installment coming out this October so don’t forget to mark your calendars.
This review contains no SPOILERS whatsoever, feel free to read all about it. Is it better than the lackluster sequels except Curse Of Chucky? Time to find out.
Pros & Cons
Pros: Chris Sarandon, Catherine Hicks, & Alex Vincent all did a good job on their performances.
Brad Dourif did a superb job on his performance as Charles Lee Ray/Chucky.
Fun Fact: While recording a scene for Chucky screaming in agony, Brad’s daughter Fiona, (who later went on to star in Curse Of Chucky with her father) heard her daddy screaming, causing her to burst into tears, Brad himself told her its all make believe, think of it like a Tom & Jerry cartoon.
Opening Scene shows the origin of Chucky, thus the franchise was born or in this case for Chucky, reborn in a new body.
Cinematography was decent, using Point Of View (POV for short) shots to show what Chucky sees as he orchestrated his designated target using creative stealth tactics.
The High Concept or What If Scenario, about a serial killer transferring his soul into a harmless doll, felt unique and ridiculous at the same time.
Chucky’s villain motive is a race against the clock for him, you’ll have to see why he wants the kid so badly. If you’re aware of his motive, you know why.
Practical Effects were heavily used to create the doll with a combination of animatronics and stunt doubles to bring him to life. This was done without C.G.I.
During an ADR recording session, Dourif ad-libbed a line with Chucky in an elevator scene.
Death Scenes were crafted realistically. One of them is an over-the-top overkill. (beyond an instant kill)
A pre-kill line with one character saying, “This is the end friend!” I’m giving it Bonus Points as one of the best pre-kill lines in movie history.
Opening credits shows us viewers that Tom Holland directed this movie. Did Peter Parker persuade Dr. Strange to go back in time to direct this picture? I sense Marvel fan fiction coming soon!
Cons: Incompetent police officers, one involving cop car not properly seeing Chucky on the run, and another scene with one cop reading a newspaper while a crime scene is ongoing. Nobody does that in real life! When did a psychological mystery horror crime thriller suddenly transformed into an episode of “Reno 911?”
The Final Shot of the film ended with a Freeze-Frame. Again, like my reviews from “The Wedding Singer” and “The Ringer,” I always make fun of it by pretending to be a narrator whenever a TV crime drama ends with that kind of technique.
The Final Verdict: B for BIG SUCCESS!
In my opinion, this was a fresh start to enter the big leagues of Horror icons next to Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, (not the actor) and Pinhead. I hope one day, all of them should be in a Sinister Six type of team up similar to “The Avengers.” You hear me Hollywood? Please make this happen! I’d definitely pay my money to see this become a reality!
If you’re a mega fan of Horror films, give this one a try if you want to gear up for the upcoming Cult Of Chucky. I’ll continue to work on more each film related to Chucky and share my thoughts about them.