Monday, January 19, 2015

Puppet Master 4 (1993)

Director: Jeff Burr

Writers: Todd Henschell, Steven E. Carr, Jo Duffy, Douglas Aarniokoski, Keith S. Payson

Composer: Richard Band

Starring: Gordon Currie, Chandra West, Ash Adams, Teresa Hill, Guy Rolfe, Felton Perry, Stacie Randall, Michael Shamus Wiles, Dan Zukovic, Jake McKinnon

More info: IMDb

Tagline: When Bad Puppets turn Good

Plot: A young scientist working on an artificial intelligence project is the target of strange gremlin-like creatures, who are out to kill him and thus terminate his research. By coincidence, in one of the rooms he uses, there's a mysterious case containing the puppets of the "puppet master". When the puppets are brought to life, they help destroy the creatures.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again? No.

Man, part 3 was great and my favorite of the franchise so far.  This fourth picture feels more like the second film.  It's got a handful of attractive twenty-somethings at the same giant old ass hotel and the puppets are loose to do some damage.  One big difference between this one and the previous films is the introduction to some underworld creature, Sutek, who sends his minions to the topside to stop anyone else from getting the 'secret formula' that makes the puppets come alive.  Now they killer puppets get their orders from a voice from the past to help destroy these little demons and save some of the kids from death. In the end the torch has been passed from the previous Puppet Master to the next one now that Sutek has failed.  It's OK.  Fortunately it's about 78 minutes long.  There was still room to cut but fans of the series shouldn't hate this one.  Sadly there's very little stop motion animation with more and more reliance on much cheaper (in dollars and aesthetics) methods of moving the little guys.  It has its share of slow spots but there's enough puppet action in the second half to keep the picture from grinding to a prolonged, screeching halt.  It's probably only worth watching if you're plugging through the series from start to finish.  Still, it's not that bad of a series when it comes to low budget horror franchises.  There are no extras on the disc.  This is from the Full Moon 12 movie collection that has the first 9 PUPPET MASTER films and the first three KILLJOY pictures. 

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