A single mother gives her son a much sought-after doll for his birthday, only to discover that it is possessed by the soul of a serial killer.A single mother gives her son a much sought-after doll for his birthday, only to discover that it is possessed by the soul of a serial killer.A single mother gives her son a much sought-after doll for his birthday, only to discover that it is possessed by the soul of a serial killer.
Director Tom Holland crafts this very original tale written by Don Mancini, where a dying sociopath (Brad Douriff) uses voodoo to transplant his soul to an inanimate toy. Catherine Hicks plays Karen Barclay, a single mother who gets the possessed toy for her little son Andy (Alex Vincent), not knowing what is hidden deep inside the doll.
Despite its apparent cheesiness, Holland truly creates a haunting atmosphere filled with suspense by following the trick Steven Spielberg used in "Jaws". While we know from the very beginning that the toy is haunted, we never get a glimpse of what he can do and neither does the characters; only the young Andy knows the truth, but nobody believes him.
Unlike its current MTV-inspired incarnations, "Child's Play" starts a bit slow, but suddenly it turns into a suspense-filled roller-coaster with enough thrills to keep you at the edge of the seat. Holland directions truly makes the difference between a cheap B-movie and the classy film this one has become.
Brad Dourif makes a superb job and this movie started his now-legendary career in the genre. Catherine Hicks is a very good lead character, surprisingly realistic, thanks in part to the very well-written dialog. Chris Sarandon completes the cast as the detective investigating the mysterious murders surrounding Chucky and Andy.
The movie moves at a very good pace, despite its slow start; it has that 80s feeling and it is surprisingly violent for its time (it was released when rules were turning a bit stricter). It has great special effects and a very creepy atmosphere inside it's urban landscape.
While many reviewers consider a flaw the fact that Chucky's possession is not a mystery, I believe that a lot of the suspense is in the fact that we know that, but the characters don't. It is a very well constructed film in the end, and definitely better than its current sequels. 8/10
- Mar 29, 2006