Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pinocchio's Revenge - 1996

This is going to be my first, and maybe only review written of a movie I haven't watched recently. Usually my routine has been to watch the movie, then the next day write the review.  I saw Pinocchio's Revenge maybe a year ago, so I'm going off pure memories. I'm doing this because I have seen Pinocchio's Revenge twice, which is rare for some relatively average, forgettable puppet attack flick.  And yes, this is like Pinocchio as in the animated thing, the puppet.  But this one is live action and is a lot more like Child's Play than Pinocchio.  And it's not alone.  This and the 1988 movie Pin are both worthy entries into the puppet attack films that took on Pinocchio as a perpetrator.

Imagine Child's Play, the initial build, but without ever seeing the doll move, talk, etc.  It's all the child saying it did this, saying it did that.  Now, we do hear it talk, as the audience.  However, it's puppet mouth doesn't move and the creepy puppet thing never moves either.  We start with a guy out in the woods burying the puppet and the film goes from there.  Puppet is evil, it says all this weird-ass shit to a little girl.  She tries to convince her mom of the puppet's evil-ness, but mom ain't having none of it.

We as the audience want to see the puppet move, want to know that it is evil for sure, and that's the number one reason why this movie works.  I'm not going to say at any point that this movie is awesome, cause at best this is getting 3 stars (spoiler alert for my review there).  But this movie is not bad.  It instead walks that thriller / whodunnit / mystery / suspense line throughout, and we are made to wonder if indeed Pinocchio is committing these crimes - and if so, it he's doing it physically or mentally, and if he's not doing it, who is?!  The girl is around for all the kills so she is naturally blamed for them, and we have to wonder if it's her.

This was directed by Kevin Tenney, who did Witchboard and Night of the Demons.  Similar to those movies, this movie is well paced, keeps you guessing and interested, and has some creepy props.  It's very minimal, low budget I'd guess, and uses the fear of the unknown over monsters, blood, and extremity.  For what it is I liked it a lot, hence why I saw it twice.  I have a small thing for puppet attack movies, and since I refuse to sit through the Puppet Master series, I have to watch this shit.  I did see Demonic Toys and the sequel too.  There needs to be more puppet attack films.

Clearly ripping off the success of Chucky, released directly to VHS, movies like this are freakin sweet.  Where would we be without some bullshit trash like Pinocchio's Revenge?  3 full stars for the puppet, the girl actor, and the thrill of seeing Pinocchio maybe kill some peeps.

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