Puppet Master 5

Disregard the title discrepancy.  Depending on where you look, the five in Puppet Master Five is either a number or a Roman numeral.  If you're holding the VHS box, this avertible sequel is known as Puppet Master 5: The Final Chapter.  I swear to Christ, is there any consistency in this series whatsoever?  The plot picks up mere days after the events in the previous entry, and yet, the puppets are different.  Guess who's back?  Fucking Torch!  Where the hell has he been?  For all I care, he could have been dipping Bokeem Woodbine's toenails in mango chutney.  The script does do one thing right; it shows that there are consequences for being found in a hotel with several cadavers.

Needless to say, the cops don't believe our hero's story of doll necromancy.  He's a prime suspect, but is allowed to be released on bail.  The bulk of the action takes place in a familiar setting.  I've seen this lush auberge in several movies now, and I'm growing weary of it.  At least Camp Crystal Lake was outside, perched with vernal foliage and framed in a wide variety of climate changes.  PM5 looks exactly like PM4.  The characters are just as banal as they were the first time around.  What's worse, we get a smaller dose of Sutekh, the best/worst creature in Full Moon's arsenal of addlebrain devilry.  Here, he instills his spirit into a Totem doll.  With a cape.  A Totem doll with a cape.

The special effects are still laudable.  I have to wonder how long that will last.  The rest of the franchise was shot without the backing of Paramount, a key ingredient that entrusted Charles Band's filmography with some degree of professionalism.  While it's true that a budget doesn't guarantee quality, it certainly helps.  A hearty chunk of the running time is devoted to people bumbling around in dark, umbral hallways.  This flick should have been dubbed Padding: The Movie.  If you omit credits and the futile recap of PM4, you're left with approximately 70 minutes of fresh footage.  Gore?  Nope.  Nudity?  Nope.  Jeff Burr returned to the director's chair, but I honestly couldn't tell.

In terms of the story arc, there isn't much progression.  Not a lot of stuff happens, which might be the worst comment that you can level at a monster mash.  I'm actively trying to think of something I dug.  Yeah, the puppets are cool, but so fucking what?  They're cool in each installment.  I barely remember the death sequences.  Egads.  Basically, Puppet Master 5 is a diluted version of its predecessor.  I have reached the halfway point, and I am quavering with consternation.  When I'm an old man, I will look back at these reviews and sigh.  I'll probably cry a little.  It gets better, right?  Right???

No comments:

Post a Comment