Monday, October 28, 2019

Movie Review: "Bride of Chucky" (1998)

Director: Ronny Yu
Year: 1998
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 29 minutes

Tiffany, Charles Lee Ray's girlfriend, finds the dismembered remains of Chucky, reassembles himand brings him back to life. After an argument, Chucky sticks Tiffany in a doll of her own, and now, they are both desperate to find new hosts.

Jennifer Tilly holds Chucky while she's cooking in Bride of Chucky movie scene
"I've been a prisoner of my love for you for a very long time. Now, it's payback time." (Image Source)
"Bride of Chucky" might be the bluest hued movie we've ever seen. Just look at these film stills! The "Child's Play" series has moved beyond numbering their sequels and has finally started to use alternate titles. This is the fourth installment in the "Child's Play" franchise. Series creator Don Mancini is still writing the screenplays, but the person behind the camera is ever-changing. This time around, Hong Kong director Ronny Yu puts his spin on the little killer doll that could. For the past several years, the tattered remnants of Chucky (Brad Dourif) have been kept in an evidence locker at a police station that apparently stores stuff from all of the most well-known horror icons. Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly), the former girlfriend of killer Charles Lee Ray, pays a crooked cop to retrieve the infamous Good Guy doll for her. Upon receiving it, she sews Chucky back together and uses the book "Voodoo for Dummies" to bring him back to life. Wouldn't you know it, it works, but after an argument, Chucky, being the psychopathic murderer he is, butchers Tiffany and transfers her soul into a different doll. Now, they both desperately want to find new hosts for their souls, but they need the amulet that Charles Lee Ray was wearing when he was buried to do it, so they pay Tiffany's neighbor Jesse (Nick Stabile) to take them to the graveyard. Jesse decides to pick his girlfriend Jade (Katherine Heigl) up along the way. If Chucky can get his amulet, he and Tiffany will have the perfect hosts lined up for their new lives. 
Bride of Chucky horror movie still featuring Gordon Michael Woolvett, Nick Stabile, Katherine Heigl, John Ritter, and Lawrence Dane in the rain
"It ain't the size that counts, asshole, it's what you do with it." (Image Source)
The "Child's Play" movies have always had a goofy streak to them, but "Bride of Chucky" goes full-blown meta dark comedy. The humor is laid on reeeeal thick. Besides being self-aware, there are many references to other horror movie franchises. In the opening scene, we see masks belonging to both Jason Vorhees and Michael Myers, as well as Freddy Kruger's famous bladed glove. The title is obviously a reference to "The Bride of Frankenstein," and if you didn't get that off the bat, don't worry, a clip from the movie is shown just to make sure you know what's up. Even with all the added comedy and homages, there is still plenty of horror movie kills. In fact, the kills in this sequel are far more gruesome and grandiose than they were in the last three films combined, even when they are more cartoonish than the ones we've seen in the past. Blasting nails through someone's face with an airbag might be fun to watch, but it isn't all that practical. As far as the story goes, it's pretty much the same as it has always been. Chucky needs a human host for his soul, only this time, there is the added caveat of him having a girlfriend and the added necessity of an amulet, which he never seemed to have to use in the past but all of a sudden needs now. The amulet might remove the time limit, but we wouldn't know for sure because it's not made clear. This series has never been all that consistent with the rules of soul-switching. We have said it before, and we must reiterate, Brad Douriff's nasty, naughty voiceover performance really helps make these movies as successful as they are. Jennifer Tilly is an excellent, outrageous addition to the franchise, and she and Dourif play off of one another extremely well.
Brad Dourif and Jennifer Tilly plan their murder spree as Chucky and Tiffany in "Bride of Chucky" (1998)
"Stabbings went out with Bundy and Dahmer. You look like Martha Stewart with that thing." (Image Source)
In the end, though it is very flawed, there is no doubt that "Bride of Chucky" can be pretty damn fun. Sure, it might make you groan a lot from how cheesy and dumb it can get, but we also laughed a lot, and we think that counts for something.

My Rating: 5/10
BigJ's Rating: 5/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.4/10
RT Rating: 46%
Do we recommend this movie: Meh.

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