Movie Review: Puppet Master (1989)

Synopsis: When their former colleague commits suicide, a group of psychics travel to a hotel to search for the ancient Egyptian scroll, with the ability to bring inanimate objects to life, they believe he had in his possession. While there, they are stalked by a group of killer puppets.

Who's in it? The movie stars Paul Le Mat, William Hickey, Irene Miracle, Matt Roe and Mews Small.

Review: It was cold, windy and rainy outside yesterday and my wife and I wound up spending most of the day on the couch binge watching Game of Thrones. By yesterday evening, I was ready to change things up a bit with a movie and since this was one of my wife's favorites when she was younger, found it on Peacock. It wasn't as good as we remembered.

I think the biggest disappointment for us is it turned out not to be as scary as we thought it was. If anything, it is kind of a dull film. The puppets are quirky rather than frightening, especially with the weaker 1980s special effects, and the filmmakers seemed to put much more effort into a somewhat ridiculous sex scene than the violent scenes. 

It also didn't help that the psychics themselves weren't exactly noteworthy either. As I told my wife, this film felt a lot like a sequel since none of the characters were given any sort of detailed backstory and, at least for the first 10-15 minutes, it was almost as though we were expected to know who they were. This is especially true of the surprise main antagonist, who's motivations were weak, at best, unclear at worst and ultimately took away from the twist ending, which wasn't at all unexpected.

I also felt like this movie leaves a lot of loose ends (which may or may not have been addressed by the sequels). This includes how the survivors explained all the dead bodies to the police and what happened to the puppets after the killing stopped. It was almost as though the filmmakers ran out of money and just decided to end the movie as quickly as possible, even if it didn't answer any of the questions that were left unanswered.

Final Opinion: I may end up watching at least one of the sequels to see if it gets any better but, at least based on this film, I'm not sure how this franchise did well enough to even justify having sequels in the first place.

My Grade: D


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