Double Feature: Child’s Play (1988) & Child’s Play 2 (1990)

Welcome to the next double feature! This time is part one of a 2-part double feature of the same franchise. I know I’m missing a few films to complete the franchise but they aren’t currently available on any of the streaming services and I didn’t want to rent them. First up is the original 1988 Child’s Play and its direct sequel, Child’s Play 2. I’ve actually never seen Child’s Play so first time watch for this franchise. Let’s check it out!

Child’s Play (1988)

child's play

Director: Tom Holland

Cast: Catherine Hicks, Chris Sarandon, Alex Vincent, Brad Dourif, Dinah Manoff, Tommy Swerdlow, Jack Colvin, Neil Giuntoli, Alan Wilder

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. – IMDB

As I go through the many horror franchises over the years and understand the horror movie genre a little bit better, its really great to finally see Child’s Play and see this killer doll called Chucky come to life. In fact, there is a lot to love about Child’s Play and while the effects themselves are very much 80s, the origins of how Chucky becomes the killer doll and the lore behind it as well as the whole bonding with a boy and manipulating him while killing still manages to add quite a bit of tension. It has a lot to do with how everything is rather well-executed.

Chucky has always been this very popular link to possibly the origins  of killer doll slashers (or one of..I’m not very well-versed in killer dolls). There are some interesting kill moments here and its creative to say the least. At the same time, Chucky is one of those villains which has an understandable revenge plan that links to the beginning and lets the audience in on the secret while watching the characters being deceived or misled or end up in bad situations. On that level, Chucky is a fairly smart villain and the backstory itself makes him legit. If you think about, Chucky’s kind of like if Pinocchio went bad except Chucky really just wants to get back into his human form to undo the voodoo ways he had to use to not die in the first place.

Child’s Play 2 (1990)

Child's Play 2

Director: John Lafia

Cast: Alex Vincent, Jenny Agutter, Gerrit Graham, Christine Elise, Brad Dourif, Grace Zabriskie, Peter Haskell, Beth Grant, Greg Germann

While Andy’s mother is admitted to a psychiatric hospital, the young boy is placed in foster care, and Chucky, determined to claim Andy’s soul, is not far behind. – IMDB

I’m always a little wary on sequels nowadays, especially when it comes to long-winded franchises that started in the 80s. Child’s Play 2 picks up 2 years after after the events of the first movie. Andy is sent to foster care and while no one believes in the whole story about the killer doll, Chucky finds a way to get back to him after being revived at the Play Pals factory in an effort to relaunch the doll after the negative publicity. Of course, as the remains of Chucky is put back together so does the villain possessing it and it sets off once more to find Andy and capture his soul before he becomes one with the doll exterior. Its a bit of the same thing as the first movie just in that this one has a slightly older Andy who acknowledges the dangers and tries to save himself so the differences are still there in terms of plot.

It still is a decent watch if not a little familiar and predictable. However, the characters here and choosing to follow the plot from the first makes it feel grounded and believable. The logic behind Chucky and how long he has to capture Andy’s soul and how all that works is a bit blurry. At the same time, Chucky still has quite a few moments to find his ground and still is a pretty decent villain in the situation. The only issue with this film is just the familiarity of it. The final act was however quite decent as Andy finds an ally that believes him and it all goes back to a dangerous location for the finale but a fitting location as well.

Child’s Play 2 is not quite as strong as the first one but its still a decent sequel. It has a lot of good elements to it and still relatively well-executed.

That’s it for this double feature!
Have you seen the Child’s Play franchise? Thoughts?
Part 2 of the Child’s Play double feature is coming up soon!