Child's Play (2019)
A couple of years ago, when I reviewed this, I think I was a little more forgiving than I probably should have been. While Chucky was never really my favourite horror villain, the idea behind the original makes for a better mythology. It's a strange thing to say, but what's lame about this is that it makes (a little) more sense as a cautionary tale about technology going awry. I'll grant that it is a good direction to take things in order to try something new, and if that's for you, then I won't argue. But for me, there's something so much better about the old school voodoo Chucky.
Plot-wise we have more or less the same idea as the original. Andy Barclay (Gabriel Bateman) and his mother (Aubrey Plaza) move to a new city, and his mother gives him a new "Buddi" doll that names itself "Chucky" (Mark Hamill) after a bad Han Solo joke. As mentioned, in this version, Chucky isn't a serial killer's soul inside of a doll. Chucky is an A.I. that works much like Alexa or Google Home, and it's really just so creepy and ugly that I can't imagine anyone ever being into it. In this version, Chucky's evil ways here are due to... well, remember that 'Simpsons' take on the killer Krusty doll, where someone simply set it to evil?... Yeah, that's pretty much what happens here too. Some disgruntled employee is just picked on one too many times, and he takes out his anger by messing with Chucky's parameters.
Chucky ends up not quite understanding what to think. His killing is, at first, done out of good. He witnesses Andy watching a slasher movie, Andy's being entertained by it, laughing, etc., so all Chucky picks up on, as an A.I., is that killing is what makes Andy happy. I have to give the film credit for the whole idea. They brought back an 80's/90's horror monster, and made it it's own thing, instead of just being repetitive, and relying on fan service more than anything. It's a new twist, and the idea that Chucky has access to a lot of dangerous electronics makes things extra creepy. But once again, on a personal level, I find the creepiness of the lifeless Chucky doll (namely in the original and 'Curse') while knowing there's a serial killer in there somewhere is just showing that less is more. This is a little more straightforward.
I think my main problems with the movie lie in the fact that it doesn't really make any sense to give your kids access to all of the electronic shit in your home. It further makes no sense that a kid Andy's age would prefer a Buddi doll over something like Google Home. He's not 6 like he was in the original. It's a funny thing to be able to give a film credit for having an original idea, but at the same time, question why the original idea exists. I suppose the idea is to give an older version of Andy access to technology as much as kids have access to cell phones (and more) these days. But again, in the form of a creepy doll, it just feels weird. Why not make something more like R.O.B. the Robot from the NES games - but functional.
I ended up meeting this film in the middle originally. The overall execution wasn't great, but I did enjoy the original concept here, which sort of makes it a long 'Black Mirror' episode in a way. As a reboot of a horror franchise, I have to say that this is probably one of the better ones, even if I found it somewhat mediocre. It still wasn't Freddy just doing his thing again with a creepier origin, or Jason just doing his thing again... again (although, so help me, I still enjoy that one for some reason). Upon second viewing, my opinion has dropped on it overall. While clever in some areas, it fails in others - especially when there's no question of Chucky having human strength; he's a straight up machine here and feels like no threat at all. It's a solid attempt at a reboot, but it might have worked better without the 'Child's Play' title.
Rebooted Body Count: 9
Rebooted Total: 9
Cult of Chucky
The original 'Chucky' series ends here with 2017's 'Cult of Chucky'. While a lot of it does feel like fan service for a final film, I can't help but enjoy some of the original ideas behind it that further the lore of Chucky and what he can do. This one picks up where 'Curse' left off, and it makes it so that you kind of have to see the last three " of Chucky" films for it to make any real sense. It's clear that this was one made for the fans who have been through this journey over the past few decades.
We see that Nica Pierce (Fiona Dourif) has been committed after being accused of the murders from the previous film, with "delusions" of a Chucky (Brad Dourif) doll doing it the whole time. With plenty of positive progress, she is transferred to a minimum security ward. There, in a group session, head doctor Foley (Michael Therriault) brings in a new Good Guy doll (one that came with the name of Chucky) as an attempt to make Nica see reality for what it is, since she blames the murders on the doll. While she claims not to fear it, another patient named Madeleine (Elisabeth Rosen) claims the doll as her own baby, bringing some apprehension to Nica in her new setting.
Meanwhile, we meet back up with Andy (Alex Vincent, all grown up) and find that after the stinger at the end of 'Curse', he's been holding Chucky's head prisoner. He takes delight in tormenting him, since he lost his entire childhood because of him. However, what Andy doesn't realize is that Chucky did his voodoo homework and found a way to spread himself around, putting Nica and the rest of the hospital's patients in real danger. Besides the doll Madeleine has claimed as her kid, another is brought in by Tiffany (as Jennifer Tilly) to give to Nica, and another is sent to Doctor Foley by an unknown source. Soon, multiple Chucky dolls are piling up a body count, and Chucky's goal for a human body just might come to pass after all these years.
This one ends up bringing back just about everyone we've seen in past movies (except '3'). Andy's here, Tiffany's here, Nica's here, there's even a very special stinger cameo that I won't spoil here. It all comes together, making it feel like a sort of "final chapter", which is just as well, since things were rebooted in 2019. The ending of the film is actually a really cool twist that one might not quite expect - but it's great for a horror movie, and a great way to end the series. I further appreciated the various horrific ideas behind this one. For starters, they bring in not just one, but several Good Guy dolls, posing a bigger threat. With committed patients who may think they are suffering some sort of paranoid delusion, there's that extra little bit of questioning whether or not Chucky's real.
The film also brings something truly terrifying to the screen, when we see an example of a crooked doctor using his patients in nasty ways. No anyone with a mental health problem, that sort of thing can really hit home - the idea of not knowing whether or not you can trust your caretaker. That sort of thing feels scarier than the killer doll(s) present. But with it comes balance. With so many Chucky dolls walking and talking, we get that dark and twisted sense of humour back. This isn't quite the horror/comedies that 'Bride' and 'Seed' were, but the humour is still there, although I have to admit that some of the laughs they were going for weren't entirely received well.
My only real criticisms here involve Chucky's cartoonish design, and... well, I hate to say it, but Andy. I'm not entirely sure of his purpose here other than providing fan service. He tries to be useful, but usually isn't, and he doesn't really do much of anything. His whole secondary story is damn near pointless. You could almost take him out of this completely. I thought it was a shame that the original victim of these films got dealt such a short hand while Nica becomes the new main. The guy came back after all this time to reprise his role, and I think he should have had more to do.
Criticisms aside, there's still plenty to enjoy here. It's still a good fan service flick if you're into these movies, some of the ideas are interesting and original, you might get a decent laugh here and there, and the kills are pretty damn gruesome and cool (for you gore hounds). In the end, I get the idea that this was mostly made for the fun of it all. For my money, 'Curse' was much better, but this was still decent, despite any gripes I might have. Again, the way it ends is a pretty awesome way to close off the series before the 2019 reboot - which doesn't really do this series justice, but more on that soon.
Body Counts: Chucky - 7, Tiffany - 1
Totals: Chucky - 44, Tiffany - 9
Curse of Chucky
I have gone ahead and claimed this particular chapter of 'Chucky' as my personal favourite. I've always considered Chucky to be on among the weaker side of horror villains. I mean, he's a doll. It never made sense to me that he could be much of a threat. Sure, he could get a few good jabs in, but logically, you should be able to stop him. So, when it comes to the haunted/possessed evil doll, turning the creep-factor up is what makes it scarier, and this does go back to its roots.
We start off here with a brand new cast, introducing paraplegic, Nica Pierce (Fiona Douriff - Brad's daughter) and her mother (Chantal Quesnelle). They receive a mysterious package in the mail, and upon opening it, Chucky is revealed, and given to Alice (Summer Howell), the daughter of Nica's sister, Barb (Danielle Bisutti) and husband, Ian (Brennan Elliott) who come by to stay for a little while, after Nica suffers through a major tragedy. Things start happening around the house, and it goes back to the old "Chucky did it" or "Chucky said it" ways of the first film - which was part of what made it creepy to begin with. He does come to life in this as usual. But I find something more sinister with this incarnation of Chucky - I daresay, better.
Another thing to admire about this chapter was the cinematography. There was something about the way this was filmed, using light to its advantage, as well as certain perspectives that just added to the horror aspect of everything. It's a true breath of fresh air from the horror comedies we recently sat through. Those were okay for a time when horror was becoming self aware and silly, but eventually that got old, and things needed to get eerie again. And I think 'Curse of Chucky' delivers it very nicely as a bit more of a haunted house film than a straight up slasher flick.
A lot of this movie is just creepy and slow-paced, and it does a very good job of upping the suspense level. I further admire how a lot of the kills in this aren't entirely predictable. You'll easily assume something's gonna go one way, but then we're surprised by something else taking the victim out. That's something I've always appreciated a great deal when it comes to horror; making something seemingly predictable and catching us off guard. The last time I saw it done this well was probably 'The Final Destination'.
We eventually get to see how this one connects with all of the previous films as well, as eventually, previous characters start popping up around the end of things. There's also a stinger to this one, that sets up the next movie, but allows the whole thing to just end if you so choose. The film, as a whole, is a pretty great smorgasbord for fans of the franchise. It refers back to the previous films, there's plenty of fan service, nostalgia, and it's a great balance of fun and scary. But it does it without becoming a horror comedy. It's nice to see it go back to its roots, and perhaps be even creepier than the original.
Body Counts: Chucky - 8, Tiffany - 1
Totals: Chucky - 37, Tiffany - 8
Seed of Chucky
While I have to admit that I somewhat admire what they were trying to do here, I have to say that this is where the series finally reached "overkill", and not really in the good slasher-movie-fan kind of way. 'Bride' leaves us hanging in the same way 'Alien vs Predator' did; with a glimpse of a new hell spawn of an offspring. 'Seed' carries things on six years later, where we see "Shitface" (eventually Glen/Glenda, played by Billy Boyd) living a life of embarrassment and abuse as a ventriloquists dummy. There's no origin here, it just opens like this.
Soon enough, he sees Chucky (Brad Douriff) and Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly) on TV, promoting a new meta movie about the mysterious killings taking place over the years, ironically with Jennifer Tilly playing the lead role. At this point, Chuck and Tiff are restored, lifeless dolls, only brought to life with Hollywood animatronics. Instantly, the kid manages to put together that they are his parents. He manages to run away from the ventriloquist, and travels to Hollywood to find his parents, and he even accidentally brings them back to life by using the amulet Chucky supposedly left him. It feels like there's a lot missing from the opening, but nevertheless, Chucky and Tiffany come back, realise they have a son or daughter, and they tend to fight over which - Glen of Glenda?
Meanwhile, Jennifer Tilly is starting to lose out on her promising career, even bringing up her Oscar nomination that the entire world probably forgot about from back in '95 for 'Bullets Over Broadway'. So she does the logical thing by auditioning for Redman (also playing himself) for the role of the Virgin Mary. Long story short, the pair become the new human targets for Chucky and Tiffany to transfer their souls into. And, needing someone to transfer the kid into, there's some unfortunate artificial insemination gags that go on here, with Tilly as the surrogate. So yeah, things definitely get weird here for a movie about a possessed killer doll, his bride and son, all of whom were made in Japan.
Now, there are two things in movies like this that I truly admire. For one, the lead celebrity (Tilly) is able to laugh at herself, and is clearly having fun with the role. Secondly, I'm a sucker for fourth wall gags. But with those mentioned, this is a film that delivers these things with a hand as heavy as an Acme anvil. Tilly can definitely poke fun at herself, but if this was written for her, I can't help but feel that a lot of it was very intentional on almost punishing her in some weird way. The voice, the weight (oh please), the personality, it's all seemingly bullied here. If she's cool with it, then God bless her. If she improvised it, even better. But a lot of it feels very low-blow to me. Meanwhile, Redman is basically playing a player here, and somehow I don't think he could possibly have a problem with that.
The film also tries to drive an almost back handed message home to its audience with the context of "be yourself", using both Glen/Glenda and Chucky as examples (his is the "back handed" part of this). It really does ultimately end up being the strangest entry into the series, in my opinion. It plays as much more of a comedy/fantasy with hints of slasher horror than a straight up comedy/horror like last time. I'll give them credit for trying out something new, and taking the idea of making Chucky a horror/comedy icon a bit further. However, this really does just get ridiculous, and you can't help but find it pretty mean-spirited, even for a slasher flick. This has to be the weakest, silliest entry into the franchise - it's not bad for a chuckle, but all of the scare is just gone now.
Body Counts: Chucky - 6, Tiffany - 3
Totals: Chucky - 29, Tiffany - 7
Bride of Chucky
Within the realm of horror history and its big-wigs, the early 90s marked the end of a lot of it. 'Child's Play 3' wrapped up the Chucky trilogy, 'Freddy's Dead' and 'Jason Goes to Hell' killed off the two biggest horror names of the era (with a certain tease that seemed to last forever), and no one but the die hard fans really cared anymore. That is until Wes Craven made 'Scream', added some fourth wall comedy to the mix, made it self-aware, and slasher horror could be considered reborn after that.
It got to the point where self-aware horror, and horror comedy was the wave of the future. However, that's not with a few long and annoying detours to Torture Porn Terrace, and Demon Possession Drive. Anyway, I remember at the time, seeing 'Bride of Chucky' when it got its home video release and thinking it was actually pretty stupid (and it still is). It was also my introduction to Chucky in general, so probably not the best place to start. However, it wasn't until watching this with new and more appreciative eyes that I fully grasped that this was always meant to be some self-aware silliness - the film itself suggests through a bit of dialogue that the idea of a murderous doll is pretty dated and ridiculous by 1998. Not to mention some horror easter eggs in the opening scene some true horror fans would appreciate.
Taking place approximately one month after the events of 'Child's Play 3' (at least according to Wiki), Andy is now taken out of the picture completely, and replaced with Chucky's old girlfriend, Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly). She gets her hands on the not-as-exploded-as-the-last-film-would-make-it-seem Chucky (Brad Douriff), stitches him together using spare doll parts, and through using a 'Voodoo for Dummies' book, resurrects Chucky. Soon, however, Chucky winds up transferring Tiffany's soul to another doll, and they ultimately "Bonnie-and-Clyde" it, using a couple of dumb teenagers as their alibi; Jade (Katherine Heigl) and her rebellious love interest, Jesse (Nick Stabile), who have a side-plot of their own, trying to duck and dodge her overprotective uncle (John Ritter). And yes, eventually we get into the dolls' whole need for a human body again.
All in all, it has some fun moments, especially for horror fans, but it still falls pretty flat altogether. Most of the comedy involved here has to do with the struggling relationship between Chucky and Tiffany, and at times things get pretty lame, and even a bit awkward. I mean, there's a sex scene between these dolls (definitely setting up for the eventual sequel). 'Team America' did it too, but that felt like it was meant to be taken FAR less seriously than this, even if this is classified a horror/comedy. The first few times seeing it, it's super weird and awkward. But once you know its coming, it does sort of add to the comedic aspect of the whole deal. It's still weird, but nowadays, you kind of get what they were going for.
What I will definitely give this chapter, is that the Chucky and Tiffany dolls look pretty damn awesome in their execution. It may look a tad more cartoonish, but one must bear in mind that these are still dolls, so realism can only go so far with something like this. I also like that Chucky finally has some war wounds (even if it's less than we might have expected) after three movies. I'd say the most cringe-worthy thing going on here is the acting. It's an interesting situation when the two puppets from the film far outweigh the acting skills of literally everyone here. That sadly includes John Ritter, so maybe its more about the direction. I think it may have been done on purpose for the time, parodying a lot those horror tropes, but that doesn't mean it aged well at all. 'Scream' did the same thing, but was far superior.
Nevertheless, it's still a half-decent self-aware horror/comedy, constructed for those who are not only 'Child's Play' fans, but 'Child's Play' fans who fully realize that the whole idea is silly, and not entirely scary. It does a decent job of breaking the fourth wall ever so slightly, but not enough to be 'Deadpool'-like. But by now we do realize that when you weigh a doll with a knife against someone who kills you in your dreams, and a big lug, unpredictable force of nature who seems to have teleportation abilities, things just aren't as threatening here. This is super cheesy, but it's aware that it's super cheesy, and that's the charm you'll get out of it. If you want classic 'Child's Play', you're out of luck here. But it is kind of fun that for a short time Chucky takes a break from the serious.
Body Counts: Chucky - 5, Tiffany - 4
Totals: Chucky - 23, Tiffany - 4
Child's Play 3
Moving right along, here we have one Chucky title that I'm not the biggest fan of. Although it's not without a few moments, I'd have to say it's mostly just bad. This was right around the time the series started adding a few elements of comedy, but it was still okay about being a horror flick. It felt like it didn't know what it wanted to be, and while 'Child's Play' 1 and 2 provided a good couple of films that suited the time well (using Cabbage Patch and My Buddy dolls for inspiration), this was a bit more of a cash grab for the series.
We start the film off with Chucky's (Brad Douriff) resurrection. Once again he's rebuilt and comes back to life, but this time before the credits stop rolling (way to build tension). The Play Pals toy company is running out of ideas and running out of money, so it's recommended that after 8 years, they bring the Good Guy doll back on the market - starting with Chucky, the rebuild of the old doll. Why they wanted to rebuild a melted heap of plastic to bring back a doll that has offered them nothing but bad publicity over the years? Your guess is as good as mine. I mean, they could just start from scratch but... we need to bring Chucky back to life for this movie, right?
Enter Andy (Justin Whalin), now 16, who is shipped off to Military School after a series of foster home failures. There, he befriends a boy named Tyler (Jeremy Sylvers), a dude named Whitehurst (Dean Jacobson) and a girl named DeSilva (Perrey Reeves). He also has to cope with lieutenant colonel Brett C. Shelton (Travis Fine), who routinely bullies the cadets in ways that I'm fairly certain are totally illegal in real life. But, I mean, correct me if I'm wrong. There's a hell of a lot I don't know about that kind of stuff. Times are tough for Andy now, but he holds his own as he tries to push through it with the support of his newfound friends. But little does he know, an old "friend" has figured out where he is.
Chucky manages to mail himself to Andy, only to stumble across Tyler instead, who greedily takes the package and opens it to find Chucky in his Good Guy package. Through a loophole that doesn't feel like it makes any sense, Chucky realizes that since being brought back to life, he hasn't told anyone his secret yet. Therefore, Tyler becomes the new body Chucky's soul is going after. Personally, I don't get how this works (even in 'Child's Play 2') since the ending of 'Child's Play' supposedly traps Chucky in the doll's body for good. He's rebuilt in '2' as well, but there's nothing to suggest everything kinda just "reboots" for him when this happens. Trying to get to Andy was just a plot point that carried through, logically. There's no explanation, and for that tidbit, the original 'Child's Play' is far superior than its two original sequels, until it starts to develop a comedic, self-aware twist with 'Bride'.
While the 'Child's Play' movies are by no means perfect, I still tend to hold the first two in higher regard than this one. For yours truly, it feels kind of rushed, and the acting's pretty rough - although personally, I can believe that Whalin is portraying the same Andy we saw in the previous two films. They did do a pretty good job of matching him up for the time, since Alex Vincent wouldn't have been much older and honestly couldn't have really done this role. In the end, this is pretty mindless, but I didn't dislike it as much as I did last time. As a slasher horror fan, one must be able to appreciate chapters like this where this time you might be here for a few more laughs. It's the 'Elm Street 4' of this particular franchise, but this is about where the real horror aspect ends for Chucky (at least until 'Curse').
Body Count: 7
Child's Play 2
Like all great horror villains, Chucky would have his fair share of sequels to follow, starting with 'Child's Play 2' in 1990. It's relatively standard as far as horror sequels go - villain miraculously comes back to life for revenge, the lead comes back to be placed in some sort of special care scenario ('Elm Street 3', 'Halloween 5', 'Friday 5'), and several "nobody" characters are taken out by the killer in an ultimate mission of revenge (or copycatting). This was right around the time slasher horror was at a tipping point, but this managed to hold its own.
This time around, we are reunited with an 8-year-old Andy (Alex Vincent), two years after the events of the first film. He has since been placed in foster care while his mother has been placed under special care for her "delusions" about her boy's murderous doll, Chucky (Brad Douriff). Because of Andy and his mother's ravings about Chucky, the PlayPals toy company finds and rebuilds the doll in an effort to prove to the public that he's actually safe, and the Good Guy toy line isn't faulty. Once the eyes are put in, Chucky comes back to life, and he continues to pursue Andy in order to get his soul into Andy's body. Otherwise, he becomes "human" (but still in doll form), and trapped in that body.
In this chapter, Andy meets and befriends a teen trouble-maker (using the term loosely) named Kyle (Christine Elise). Here, she plays the role of caretaker to Andy just a bit more than the actual Foster parents. In some ways, she could be seen as the "final girl", but she's also a one-off who seems to be more of a mother figure for this chapter. Andy is the lead for this series, making the 'Child's Play' movies a little more unique in comparison to slashers of the time - the hero is just a little kid whereas the hero for basically anything else horror is a teenager played by a 30-something-year-old (with a few exceptions). It's further unique how often Vincent comes back to reprise this role, when you take Tommy Jarvis of 'Friday the 13th' and John Conner of 'Terminator' into consideration (someone new every time). They only missed once with 'Child's Play 3'.
I might like this one just a little bit more than the original. They both have their merits, and I might suggest that the original is far more creepy. But as a slasher flick, this fits a bit more with the horror tropes of the time (which my or may not be a good thing, depending on personal opinion). Plus, if I'm being honest, Chucky just looks a hell of a lot better here. He's still got that otherworldly animation to him, but he also looks and sounds so much more sinister in this one. He's actually more scary here, playing a monster, whereas in the first one he was very much still just a killer inside a doll. Sometimes it still looks kinda silly, but it didn't seem like we were watching children running around in Chucky masks as doubles, like in the first one (although we probably still did - they just did a better job of it here).
For my money, 'Child's Play 2' is a very worthy sequel to its predecessor, and the two films are very easy to watch back-to-back as a three-hour film. Though it might not quite be as creepy as the original, it still does a good with job developing Andy, making Chucky a little more vicious than he was before, and some of the kills get pretty creative. Of the original three, I'd probably suggest that this is my favourite, but the original is still the best overall. As for three, that re-review is coming soon. Although Chucky's not exactly my favourite horror villain, this is probably where I've enjoyed him the most aside from 'Curse'. So if you wanna go back to the old school slasher days, I'd recommend back-to-backing these on a dark and stormy night. It's good old fashioned slasher horror fun with a unique twist.
Body Count: 7
The 80s was a hell of a decade for horror. It breathed life into some of the most iconic properties we still remember fondly today. But while things that started off scary, they eventually became self-aware and even a little comedic by the late 80s. Characters like Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees became pop culture icons as opposed to objects of terror, and at this point, horror was fun more than it was scary. This was around the time cinema introduced us to the likes of Chucky the murderous doll, starting in 1988 with 'Child's Play'.
Our story begins with Chucky's origin, as we see serial killer Charles Lee Ray (Brad Douriff) on the run from Officer Mike Norris (Chris Sarandon). He seeks shelter in a toy store, but Norris manages to give him a good bullet wound. In desperation, and through the means of voodoo magic, Charles transfers his soul into a Good Guy doll - a fictional toy doll taking on the properties of "My Buddy" and largely inspired by the Cabbage Patch Kid craze of the early 80s. Playing on this craze, we eventually meet single mother, Karen Barclay (Catherine Hicks) and her son, Andy (Alex Vincent), who's about to celebrate his sixth birthday. Of course, he wants nothing but a Good Guy doll, causing his mother to buy one on the black market.
Soon, we learn that this is the doll Charles Lee Ray transferred his soul into, and under the guise of "Chucky", he's out for revenge on those who have wronged him. Throughout much of the film, Chucky is just a normal doll, and he remains creepy and hidden with simple, subtle, believable movements. He uses Andy as a means for his revenge while he stays in perfect doll form, and any time we do see his movements in the background, they look extra creepy. This is a good example of less being more, but he does come out in full animatronic form eventually, and for the time, it must have been pretty damn creepy. Nowadays, we're used to seeing Chucky do his thing, but this was a new take for the time, targeting some potential fears of parents who had kids who had dolls. That's not just the doll coming to life either.
One thing that stands out about this chapter, at least to me, is the idea that Andy goes off with Chucky on his own at one point, taking a train to get to where he needs to go. Considering he was all alone and no one said anything about it, it's unrealistic. But one fear any parent has is a runaway child, and this provides a whole new scenario for it in that, basically, it seems Andy's imagination gets away from him the way he communicates with Chucky. He's only 6 years old, so it's perfectly understandable. We know in the film he's really communicating, but it does put that "what if" fear in one's head. I have to hand it to the film for not only playing with these fears, but also being a cautionary tale of going certain lengths to give your kids what they want. Or, if you like, just a cautionary tale about purchasing black market items in general.
I think to some degree some effects are dated (it's sometimes funny to see what is clearly a kid in an elaborate Chucky costume), but it's a great piece of horror for its time. It's another horror villain to add into the pantheon, Chucky plays well as the pop culture horror icon of the time from the get-go, and as a sort of "first", it genuinely puts a kid in danger as opposed to the teenagers we're otherwise so familiar with in other franchises. Speaking for myself, that always adds another layer of dread to anything - knowing the killer is willing to go to such lengths. One thing I didn't cover is what exactly Chucky wants with Andy, and it basically involves possession. I dunno if it's still spoiler territory at this point, but you can probably put it together with what I've said.
Eventually, these films would come to realize how silly the whole concept is, and turn into a horror/comedy franchise. But 'Child's Play' still actually holds up as something genuinely creepy to me. Some dated effects aside, some of these effects are puppeteering a doll, and there's something otherworldly about it. Personally, I might suggest that this is the scariest Chucky ever actually looks (aside from 'Curse'), and for my money, the 'Child's Play' series doesn't get much better than the way this original was executed. Perhaps it's somewhat dated in comparison to the stuff we're used to now, but it's a great time capsule that added a whole different level of horror for the late 80s.
Body Count: 4