Child’s Play

Vampire Owl: Do you remember Chucky?

Vampire Bat: How can we not remember Chucky? He was the coolest scary doll until Annabelle came into the picture.

Vampire Owl: Annabelle could never be that creepy, as the spirit is not always creepy enough.

Vampire Bat: Well, he has been an inspiration for vampire dolls too.

Vampire Owl: They say that this time we have a reboot and not a sequel.

Vampire Bat: That is not natural. Usually, the come up with more and more sequels as if this is something eternal.

Vampire Owl: This one also got Artificial Intelligence.

Vampire Bat: Yes, what is a doll without AI during these days of science and technology?

Vampire Owl: That would make it a robot.

Vampire Bat: A robotic doll which would replace all, maybe.

[Gets some tapioca chips and three cups of masala tea].

What is the movie about? :: Kaslan Corporation has a new type of high tech dolls called Buddi, which are designed to be long time companions to kids, learning their interests and what happens around, and then acting accordingly. These dolls become huge hit among the children, as parents find them to be substitute for other children and pets – the dolls are also supposed to be flawless, passing a large number of tests, and not reporting a faulty piece anywhere. With factories for manufacturing and assembling all over the world, one of them in Vietnam, has its safety protocols manipulated and disabled, just before one of the fired workers finish his final Buddi doll. After doing the same as an act of vengeance, the worker commits suicide, but the doll is packed among the other dolls and sent to the United States of America to meet the rising need for the models.

So, what happens with the events here? :: In the city of Chicago, a retail clerk and single mother Karen Barclay (Aubrey Plaza) and her son, Andy Barclay (Gabriel Bateman), movies into a new apartment, where latter struggles to make friends. To help Andy move away from his continuous staring at mobile and television, and to take his attention away from her newfound boyfriend Shane (David Lewis) who is with her most of the time, Karen blackmails her boss to get a faulty Buddi doll which was returned to them, as a new version of the doll was ready to hit the markets. The doll which does seem to have some problems with its working procedure, calls itself Chucky (Mark Hamill) and is instantly attached to Andy, whom he considers to be his best friend, and a pal forever. Due to interest in Chucky, two kids in the building also becomes friends with him, Falyn (Beatrice Kitsos) and Pugg (Ty Consiglio).

And what else follows with the happenings? :: But Chucky doesn’t seem to be the usual Buddi doll, as it develops violent tendencies from the horror movie it watches with the kids, and almost stabs them mimicking what happens on the screen. It strangles Andy’s pet cat which had scratched Andy, and scares Shane for making him happy. Chucky is one possessive doll that doesn’t like anyone other than him to be too much attached to him. Andy and his newfound friends make the other neighbouring kids like Omar (Marlon Kazadi) unhappy. Meanwhile, Andy also becomes friends with other neighbours Detective Mike Norris (Brian Tyree Henry) and his mother Doreen Norris (Carlease Burke) to whom he gives advice on new technology. But this increase in the number of friends is not something that pleases Chucky, as he is the one who is supposed to be the best friend forever – for that to happen, he would do more.

The defence of Child’s Play :: There are some nice scary and even more creepy scenes in this movie, as the doll becomes more of a threat than it had ever been in the past, with Artificial Intelligence threatening to do more. There is also the presence of blood and gore, especially related to the killing, and the final fight scene has more of it, with a lot of dead bodies involved with chaos being unleashed by the doll. The new generation who has not watched the original will like it even better. In the age of Annabelle doll with a spiritual presence, Chucky does more with Artificial Intelligence and catches our attention in style. Aubrey Plaza as the mother leads the way here with the performance, followed by Gabriel Bateman and the other kids, mainly Beatrice Kitsos. In between, Brian Tyree Henry also has a fine role done well.

The claws of flaw :: The fans of original movie and its early sequels might not like to stick to this one with a different look and also a divergent tale about its origins. The violence brought forward here might not make some people feel happy either. There are garden tillers and chainsaws in action here with the soon-to-be dead people not getting any close to a deviant respect either. The movie also ends too soon, as there is less happenings after the doll goes rogue – we should have certainly had more of them. Child’s Play is a franchise which was always destined for more greatness than it ever had. We can hope for the same greatness to be achieved in the possible sequels. We know that there is always more ideas coming up as far as horror is concerned, and with the slasher elements added, it is yet to be seen how much this can accomplish.

How it finishes :: The original version of Child’s Play was about a serial killer performing a Haitian Vodou spell to transfer his soul into a Good Guy doll. This one changes the storyline to match the current situation, as Artificial Intelligence becomes the key. Curse of Chucky and Cult of Chucky have been some very interesting movies in the franchise, and so a reboot here was supposed to arrive at some point. The variation that this movie had brought might not feel good for people who wanted to keep the original idea alive, but one has to agree that this one also brings a lot of scary and creepy moments to remember. It can even stand as a stand-alone film without the help of the previous movies – a claim which not many movie reboots can claim. Well, horror here can have many more sequels, and they can strive to be even better with this particular premise.

Release date: 21st June 2019
Running time: 90 minutes
Directed by: Lars Klevberg
Starring: Aubrey Plaza, Gabriel Bateman, Brian Tyree Henry, Mark Hamill, Beatrice Kitsos, Ty Consiglio, Tim Matheson, David Lewis, Marlon Kazadi, Carlease Burke, Nicole Anthony, Trent Redekop

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@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.


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