Puppet Master 2

January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

Andre Toulon’s lethally entertaining puppets are back, and now they have a new lease on life and a mission. No longer just waddling around killing everyone in their paths, the puppets now seek to exhume their creator’s corpse to stake claim to the formula that allows them to remain alive. In the process, they seek to assemble a large enough amount of brain matter so that the Puppet Master can reanimate himself, and return to be with the puppets. But in case you didn’t know, you can’t just walk into any old store and purchase brain matter, so the puppets have to do what they do best to get their hands on some. Of course, this means people are gonna be droppin’ like flies, usually in painful and horrid fashion. Whether it’s a drill through the forehead or being beaten to death by huge hands, it’s just not fun being killed by a supernatural puppet. So the puppets amass the needed brain matter and prepare for what’s to come. While the puppets think they’re doing the right thing, it might just be their own dooms they’re planning, when things get out of control.

There’s nothing quite like seeing a group of paranormal investigators being murdered and tortured by a team of supernatural puppets, is there? I mean, wouldn’t that make for a terrific episode of The X-Files, seeing Agent Scully’s head drilled in and Mulder being bled by a bunch of leeches? Ok so maybe that idea is stretching it, so this film is the next best thing. As if the first movie didn’t deliver enough puppet chills and thrills, this one packs a powerful punch of puppet mayhem. We even meet a new “puppet sensation” as the packaging calls it, the fiery tempered Torch. When I say fiery I mean it, this little guy has a flame-thrower arm and is always itching to let it loose on someone. And the puppets, well they look even better in this follow up, and manage to be just as entertaining as well. Heck, there’s even romance that sparks between two of the humans while they’re being stalked by the little scalawags. This is pretty much more of the same as far as storyline and action, so if you liked the first movie, you should find yourself in puppet heaven with this one. I recommend this movie to Puppet Master fans of all types, and anyone who gets a kick out of seeing puppets on the rampage.

This film was directed by David Allen, who was also behind the puppets and their creation. I guess after the first movie, where Allen served as a special effects supervisor for the puppets, Allen was ready to take charge of the whole shooting match. Given his inexperience as a director, Allen does a fine turn behind the camera here, and captures the same visual style of the first film. Allen would serve as supervisor for many of the Puppet Master films, and his work is certainly one of the major reasons this series has enjoyed such success over the years. Better known for his work in the special effects field, Allen has worked on such films as Robot Jox, Young Sherlock Holmes, Ghostbusters 2, and The Stuff, all impressive special effects films. Although the puppets steal the show again, the human actors manage to stand their ground at times. Collin Bernsen (Mr. Destiny, Future Shock) and Elizabeth MacLellan (Crash and Burn) seem to give the best performances, but the cast as a whole is decent at best. This film also features performances by Gregory Webb (Invader), Steve Welles (The Long Rope, The Addams Family), Nina Talbot (Serial, Night Shift), and Sage Allen (Armageddon, Ed).

Video: How does it look?

Puppet Master 2 is presented in the original full frame aspect ratio. While this visual presentation is below what we’ve come to expect from this format, it certainly is a step above the previous releases. Imagine a VHS transfer with a sharper picture and that sums up what this looks like. I didn’t expect much more from it, but the compression does leave me with a bad taste in my mouth. You see, several scenes show some artifacts and edge enhancement, which tend to be a little distracting. But, unless you’re looking for them, I doubt they will pull you out of the film much. The colors seem solid, with a natural scope used, and flesh tones look normal also. I didn’t see any problems with the contrast, as no murky shadows or detail loss was evident. While this isn’t the best transfer out there, if you’ve been watching this on VHS, you’ll be pleased with this edition.

Audio: How does it sound?

While the included audio track isn’t a powerful one, this movie doesn’t call for audio power, so don’t feel short changed. The audio is based within the front channels, but still manages to come across in a clear and distinct fashion. The music and effects sound good, but not great in this mix, but it all seems to be in adequate order. The dialogue is the main audio deal, and it comes through without serious issues.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This release contains a weblink, Full Moon merchandise guide, extensive talent files, and a terrific VideoZone featurette. The featurette contains interviews, behind the scenes footage, coming attractions, and even some shots of the puppets being handled and modified. This piece runs for about twenty-two minutes and makes for a very interesting watch.

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