This is the Ninth PUPPET MASTER film. To see previous reviews of films 1-7 as part of the boxed set please see my review of the boxed set here.
It may provide some historical reference for this new product, but this seems impossible indeed for ultimately there is none.
In true PUPPET MASTER fashion this latest film actually takes place as the fourth in chronological order of the series. It seems that moments after his suicide Toulon's puppets are rescued by a previously unnamed young carpenter named Danny Coogan. Danny works in furniture repair at the Bodega Bay hotel and as any young man who is skilled with his hands it is only a matter of time before hetruly completes the puppets hidden in a false wall in Toulon's bedroom. He soon awakens them or is it the other way around? In time he and his new puppet friends struggle win the heart of a pretty girl, foil an Axis plot to destroy our atomic energy program and generally pay homage to (rip off) every single PUPPET MASTER movie that came before this.
Let me lay this down for you, this has been all been done before (about ten times). The PUPPET MASTER movies are usually about a talented but downtrodden (often disabled) outcast who gets in more trouble than they can possibly bargain for and it is only the invention/discovery of the ancient magic puppet trunk full of hand tooled justice that allows this downtrodden protagonist turned “Puppet Master” to prevail against insurmountable odds. Whether it be Nazi's, Alien Sutek's or Egyptian cultists, everybody wants a piece of these little pain playthings, always to either to discover/reclaim/destroy their secrets of reanimation. Along the way we may gain a puppet, lose a puppet or receive some further understanding into what really makes these little wooden weirdos tick, but because every PUPPET MASTER film rewrites most every facet of it's own universe, you really shouldn't pay much attention to any of the usual elements of what makes a good film because they simply aren't here.
Now that we have established that all these films are EXACTLY the same except for the continuity errors let's review it as a Puppet Master film because let's face it, at nine volumes in, only the PUPPET MASTER fanatics are still on board with this series (as well as anyone else whose film tastes haven't grown in the past twenty years since the original volume).
There is no depiction of real time violence, no real stop motion, and the bad guys this time are still a couple Nazi's with a garrison of (well actually three) Japanese imperial soldiers on backup. Danny is likable, well rounded enough, and even his vicious, various tirades against “Krauts” and “Japs” don't even seem too insensitive, because it is perhaps the only nuance of this movie that is considered to be historically accurate. (For example, young Danny talks about Pearl Harbor before it even happened and keeps a color picture of a girlfriend in a locket). And let us not forget all the delicious backwards swastikas from a WAR VICTIMS fetish film, even though they are shown correctly on the cover art.
Look, the puppets themselves are still kind of cute, especially when they clumsily yet somehow ingeniously slaughter evil murderous humans five times their size. Yet these PUPPET MASTER reviews are getting harder to pen because the more I write, the less I actually say as none of this makes any sense anymore despite the fact that they all perfectly adhere to the exact same predictable formula. If you liked PUPPET MASTER this should not thwart you from buying the next installment. Yet if you want a good jumping point to the rich and detailed intricate plot-line that is this series, this is is as good as any, or as none for that matter.
Because the next film will deny any of this happened anyway.
Like killer puppets? Get 'em here.