Search the Cinema Head Cheese Archives!

May 1, 2022

A Binge too Far #23 - Celluloid Debauchery from your Good Friend Chucky

Promotional art from Child's Play (2019)

Cult of Chucky (2017)

Cult Of Chucky


Convicted to a mental institution for the crimes committed by Chucky in the previous film [Curse Of Chucky (2013)[, Nica Pierce (returning Fiona Dourif) has been made to believe that the titular serial killer turned toy never lived (or killed, for that matter). However, when her psychotherapist (read: psycho the rapist) Dr. Malcolm Foley (prominent TV actor Michael Therriault) introduced a Good Guy doll (the basis of Chucky’s reincarnation via voodoo for dummies, as if you didn’t know) to the group therapy sessions, soon Chucky makes his presence known, in bloody manner. In the meanwhile Andy Barclay (Alex Vincent) has grown up to become a gun fanatic (who can’t keep a relationship past the second date because they Google him and they find all sorts of weird shit that he did in the previous films) that keeps Chucky’s head in his apartment, confined, in order to keep himself happy by torturing it. It was inevitable that a cult would form, and this is not a spoiler on my part (it says so in the damn title), although it would be much more suspenseful if Universal had went with a less revealing title.


Writer/director Don Mancini did the impossible and managed – for once – to successfully turn a franchise from horror to comedy and back to horror again. He also managed to do another impossible and aside from keeping the storyline about a very confined set of characters, essentially creating a family of people, he also kept it within the family with most people in front of the camera and behind the camera as well. Speaking of the storyline, this is mostly set within a clinic, and it is very reminiscent of ‘hospital horrors’ including Halloween Ii (1981) and Halloween: The Curse Of Michael Myers (1996), and as such it also happens to be of the ‘slow burn’ variety (by all means, this is a very hypotonic film). The music goes for a Psycho (1960) mood, and so do the titles in the beginning, but this is where the similarities end. Other than that this is a very modern film, and it is keeping up with the Blumhouse horrors that are so popular nowadays and it delivers several well-staged jump-scares. If anything, producers Ogden Gavanski  and David Kirschner (who has been with the franchise since the beginning) has managed to once again keep the budget low and the concept high. While certainly not the ‘best’ franchise in horror history, we are all happy to have this monster doll terrorize us once in a while.


Child's Play (2019) poster

Child’s Play


Down on her luck, single mom Karen Barclay (Aubrey Plaza) is struggling through double shifts at the local big store in order to provide for her son Andy (Gabriel Bateman). One day she brings home a secondhand Buddi doll (This is actually a great reference, as the original film’s doll was based upon the My Buddy dolls that were popular amongst 1980s kids), the one that all the kids want, thanks to aggressive all-day advertising on television. Andy is hesitant at first, but he accepts the high-tech gift – and names it Chucky (Mark Hamill provides the voice); you see, the doll can connect with all your smart devices and do all sorts of things. However, this particular doll was programmed by an angry Vietnamese factory employer to be faulty on purpose, and the malfunction goes as far as generating murderous instincts, especially if anyone tries to hurt Chucky’s friends.


This reboot of the Child’s Play franchise (1988 – ongoing) leaves behind the possessed doll of the original series, and takes a more up to date approach that revolves around the dangers of technology. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986) plays on a television screen, so it is also pretty easy to see where this is going aesthetically as well: the kills are imaginative and the end result is overall fun. On another note, the soundtrack by Bear McCreary is pretty epic, and maybe a bit too bombastic for a film of this scope (as in budgetary means; the film was made on a modest $10 million budget, and it went on to gross $43 million).


The project was announced on July 2018 by MGM and early on it was made known that the original series’ people (creators, stars, etc.) would not be involved. The shooting lasted from September to November 2018, followed by some pick-ups in December of that same year. The marketing department went bananas in April 2019 and released several posters in which Chucky was killing or otherwise menacing the toys from Toy Story 4 (2019). The film was made available to the public on June 2019.

Get books, comics, graphic novels and more at Use the code CHC at checkout for 15% off your purchase!

Follow Cinema Head Cheese:
Facebook: /cinemaheadcheese
Twitter: @CinHeadCheese
Instagram: abnormalpodcast 
Pinterest: /abnormalpodcast/cinema-head-cheese/
RSS Feed:

You can support Cinema Head Cheese and Abnormal Entertainment on our Support Us page.