Welcome, children of the night! This Blog is for fans of vintage horror films as well as those who are just beginning to discover the joy of these classic movies. I'd love to hear from you!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Child's Play (1988)

Child's Play is one of the classics of 80's horror that spawned a franchise and an intensely loyal following.  Like A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) before it, Child's Play is able to inject humor into it's horror with great results.  The movie begins with a spectacularly intense scene where psychopath Charles Lee Ray is being pursued by the cops.  By way of dark magic, he places his soul into a doll that end us in the hands of sweet little Andy.  Naturally, things go downhill from here!
Brad Dourif [Exorcist 3, Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers] is Ray as well as the voice of Chucky.  He's wonderful in both role and brings a delightful menace to Chucky the doll that few could match.  He went on to voice Chucky in all of the sequels as well.  If you've never seen his performance in Exorcist 3, check it out.  He know how to do creepy really well.
Alex Vincent is also great as Andy.  For such a young kid, he brings tons of emotion to the role and is convincing and believable at every turn.  That's quite a feat for a child actors and he embodies all the qualities that are needed for us to want to jump onto the screen and save him from danger.  Catherine Hicks [7th Heaven, Star Trek 4] plays Andy's mom, Karen, and she fills the role quite nicely.  Together they have that "you and me against the world" vibe that works well in horror films.
The cast also includes Chris Sarandon [Fright Night, Nightmare Before Christmas ] who plays the cop investigating the case.  I love Sarandon in every film I've seen him in.  He does a great job with this role as well.  Director Ton Holland keeps the action rolling at a nice pace and the film score by Joe Renzetti adds to the overall sense of suspense and terror.
The only negative thing I can say about this movie is the use of little person Ed Gale as Chuck's stunt double.  It's so obvious they've switched from the doll to him that it's painful to watch.  My hope is that someday they will do a remake of this film and take advantage of the CGI technology we have these days to make Chucky come fully alive.  Now THAT would be something to see.  

RATING: Excellent.
For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.

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