We’ve all played with dolls. Maybe you have G.I. Joe,Transformers or Star Wars dolls. Perhaps Barbie and loyal Ken dolls clutter up your toy chest. No matter if you’re a boy or girl – or adult – we love dolls. For you macho guys, don’t worry, your dolls are action figures. The truth to all our doll endearment is we all love playing with dolls. But as these movies show us, sometimes those dolls love to play right back.
Toy Story (1995)
With a franchise approaching nearly two billion dollars – that’s a lot of digital doll parts – and counting of gross box office revenue, and millions more in merchandising, this Disney Pixar film is truly a sweet baby doll of a movie. It’s not only a crown jewel in the Pixar blockbuster cannon of movies, but Toy Story is a Hollywood landmark as the first feature film to be created entirely through CGI – computer generated imagery. Despite the digital artifice of creating artificial characters, the original, and juggernaut profitable films that followed, rely on a most human of all elements – an actor’s voice. Tim Allen and Tom Hanks play Buzz Lightyear and Woody The Cowboy respectively, and though they star in other arguably more high profile or respected roles – Hanks is a two time Oscar winner – the family friendly flicks cement both a lasting place in Hollywood history.
Child’s Play (1988)
Chucky (Brad Dourif) is your best friend to the end! Hidey ho! That is until you really piss him off. It all started when a caring mom (Catherine Hicks) decided that her son Andy (Alex Vincent) needed a new best friend. So she went to a toy store to buy him one. Sadly, the doll turned out to be a psychopathic killer who’s soul was magically fused to the sweet looking plastic Good Guy doll. This profitable demonic doll franchise was created by writer and director Don Mancini. We’ve not seen the last of the dangerous doll, as a remake is being planned, with Mancini scheduled to direct and Brad Dourif again providing Chucky’s trademark vocal terror.
Trilogy Of Terror (1975)
Amelia’s (Karen Black) personal life isn’t so hot. Her mom smothers her so much, she can’t have a love life. When she purchases a Zuni Fetish Doll, but clumsily lets its golden chain break loose, all hell breaks loose soon after. Filmed for TV by Dan Curtis (Kolchak: The Night Stalker), and based on short stories by Richard Matheson (The Twilight Zone), the movie weaves three terror tales – all starring a phenomenal Karen Black. The two other tales are perfectly fun and fine, however it’s Amelia fans most remember. The TV movie came a full 13 years before Chucky. When you see the little Zuni Doll scrambling about the apt with his knife, you see how it influenced all monster doll movie afterwards. It’s becomes so beloved, you can even buy a full scale replica of the Zuni Fetish Doll. Remember: Keep the gold chain on him!
Puppet Masters (1989)
Though the stars of this little horror gem are technically puppets, they’re doll like in appearance – but their brutal behavior is anything like a baby doll. Starring Paul Le Mat (American Graffiti) and William Hickey (Prizzi’s Honor), the moody movie takes place at a massive hotel atop a cliff in Bodega Bay, CA. Andre Toulon (Hickey) is and elderly puppeteer and something of a sorcerer. He crafts his puppets to not only last, but to live. After breathing life into one of his latest creations, he takes his own life so not to become a Nazi prisoner. It may sound a bit over the top, and it is at times, however it really works, and even spawned nine sequels, though of varying quality. Its creepy ambiance, spooky direction and solid acting makes this one doll of a doll movie.
Small Soldiers (1998)
Toy Story gave us really cute dolls. Here, we get really tough dolls who play rough. Directed by Joe Dante (Gremlins) and starring Phil Hartmanand Kristen Dunst, with the voices of Frank Langella (Frost/Nixon) and Tommy Lee Jones (The Fugitive), the movie poses a what if question: If militaristic dolls came to life itching for a fight, who would scratch them to protect us all? The movie, though not as insanely popular as other doll flicks, certainly is a fun ride for the action figure loving fan in all of us.