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