Child's Play (2019) Review

So I'm sitting here wondering what exactly to do with this website. It is, after all, my blog, my website that contains all my info and interests. I decided after going to see the Child's Play remake this past weekend that reviewing movies and TV shows was something definitely feasible. I don't do much writing anymore so I can't promise any reviews I do put out will be particularly wordy, but it's not like I currently have a lot of traffic here. Think positive, I guess.

Before I actually review the movie, I should start by saying that the original Child's Play franchise is my absolute favorite movie series of all time. The original Child's Play is my favorite movie of all time. I have all seven movies on DVD, I have a Chucky shirt, and I have a general underlying obsession with the series, meaning it's always there but something like a new movie really flares it up and gets me excited again.

You can imagine back in the fall when I saw the trailer of the new Child's Play remake I was a little split. They had such and interesting plot point at the end of Cult, where Chucky possessed the body of a human, but not just a human, a human girl. Instead of doing something with that, which I guess in all fairness would make it a little less of a Chucky movie, they decided to "remake" the original. Personally, I think it shows that Hollywood is a little out of ideas. Half of the movies that hit the box office and have a bunch of ads out to try and hype them up are remakes or sequels. Nothing is original anymore. This bias of mine, coupled with the fact that they were remaking a series so dear to me and changing so much about it, including the voice actor for Chucky himself, was making me almost not want to go see it. However as it got closer and I kept seeing their clever advertisements with Chucky killing off the Toy Story cast, I decided I was going to go see it. Past this point are my thoughts. Spoilers.

CHILD'S PLAY (2019) REVIEW

First off, I didn't care for the redesign of the doll at first. It occurred to me later that since the plot was entirely different it was almost necessary, but it just looks too ugly. The original Chucky was ugly but almost in a cute way. 2019 Chucky's gross mouth and weird eyebrows kind of turned me off. And like I mentioned above, I think Brad Douriff is the one and only true voice for Chucky, although I will say that Mark Hamill did a pretty good job, and I'm not trying to undermine his effort.

Like I said, the plot, doll design, and concept behind the movie are completely different, which makes me view it in such a way that it's taking the concept of Child's Play at it's core -- a murderous doll -- and re spun it in a modern world, hence the absence of weird voodoo magic and murderers possessing dolls and chanting incantations to try and transfer their soul into another body. The fact that the new movie has the reason for the doll going haywire as a programming blip -- a vengeful worker taking off all safety protocols and essentially corrupting the doll's coding -- makes the underlying scare factor technology, instead of a murderer. It does make it more "realistic", and scary to an extent, because it has a semblance of a chance more of being possible in real life. My way of seeing this is that it's an alternate universe of the original films, the same story, but if it happened 20 years later and how it would be different. I think this was their idea behind the movie but to be honest I didn't look too much into it.

I did think the acting was pretty spot on. Gabriel Bateman, the child actor who played Andy, was spectacular, and outshines Alex Vincent in terms of acting as a child in a horror movie. I can't tell if it's just that acting wasn't as good in the 80s or if Bateman is just really talented for his age. Anyhow, he made the movie feel more immersive and real, and his reactions were genuine. I didn't care much for his little friends, Pug and whatever the other one's name was. Their acting wasn't bad, I just didn't see the need for them in the story. As a matter of fact, I feel like there wasn't a lot of story at all. There's almost no background on Andy and his young mother, and considering the movie was as short as it was (only 2 hours in a 2.5 hour average now) I feel like they could have added a *bit* more worldbuilding, at least to flesh the characters out more. I found myself supremely not caring about any of the other children, hence why I've already forgotten their names. I did really like the story they spun with the detective, Mike, and his mom, living down the hall. They felt like genuine characters occupying the world, whereas Andy's friends felt like walking plot devices.

The murders were wonderful. Gruesome and gory, even for a Child's Play movie, but wonderful nonetheless. It was really interesting to see how Chucky utilized all of the Kaslan products to take out his victims, and only added to the "technology is bad" feel the movie was already pushing with corrupted-code-murder-doll. The scene where he killed Mike's mother in the Kaslan car was a little drawn out, but the jumpscare at the end of it made everyone in the theater around me jump, including my poor boyfriend who's never ready for those kinds of things. (I make fun of him, because I watch too many horror movies for it to affect me anymore). This movie had a pretty low amount of jumpscares, which is typical for a Chucky movie, but when they were used they were used right.

Overall, I'd say it was actually a really good remake, as far as remakes go. The acting was good, the plot was actually pretty damn frightening, and I love the ending, leaving it up to a second movie if they so decide to make one. I don't think I'm opposed to a second one, although it'll mean the Child's Play series will be nearing it's 10th installment, and I don't want to see my favorite series get stale. I think where the series has ended up at is really good, and now that it's got a modern spin on it it won't be lost to the ages, at least not until we revolutionize technology again.

My rating: 4/5

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