• OVERALL
    3.0
    WORTHY
  • Feature
  • Extras
  • Replay Value
THE FEATURE
You really can't go wrong with horror franchise pictures. Why? Because they make so many of them that they stop taking themselves seriously. Take for instance the Friday the 13th series. What began as a slasher flick with a middle-aged woman as the killer evolved into a science fiction movie on a spaceship with a mutated freak in a hockey mask as the killer. Films such as this originate as something that is supposed to be frightening, then gradually become watered down by sequels, and then resort to ridiculous comedy to cover their asses.

Child's Play originated in the 80's and told the tale of a boy's cute doll becoming possessed by a murderer named Charles Lee Ray (Brad Dourif). After a pair of sequels came the fourth installment, Bride of Chucky, where the murderous toy finds love through a female doll named Tiffany (voiced by Jennifer Tilly). So what's next? You guessed it: children.

Seed of Chucky is the latest installment in the Chucky series. Picking up where the last film left off, an illegitimate young doll is enslaved in Britain as a sideshow freak. This doll is, of course, the offspring of Chucky and Tiffany that was hinted at the end of Bride of Chucky. Determined to find his parents, the androgynous Glen (voiced by Billy Boyd) travels to America and finds his parents who have been miraculously resurrected once more.

Now a family unit, Chucky and Tiffany decide they need to transfer their souls into human bodies in order to live their lives. The lucky carrier candidates end up being Jennifer Tilly (playing herself) and Redman (playing himself). To complicate things, the doll clan must figure out a way to impregnate Jennifer Tilly in order to provide a carrier for their son Glen. However, the sexually confused Glen can't decide if he is a "Glen" or a "Glenda."

Blood gushes, heads roll, and internal organs fall out as Chucky and Tiffany strive to create a familial unit.

I do not expect brilliance from Seed of Chucky. After all, once Bride of Chucky was released, I only began to expect low-brow comedy from the series. Seed of Chucky provides plenty of good laughs, especially in the subplot revolving around Glen's gender-bending crisis. However, there is hardly a story here.

One thing I failed to identify was a protagonist. I hate to use proper plot terminology in critiquing a Chucky film, but the film's lack of a hero figure prevents it from being pushed forward. This seems to be an intentional choice in the film as possible heroic candidates are carelessly murdered in a very graphic nature. As I watched almost every character get wasted I realized that Seed of Chucky is simply a showcase of splatter. It is a Fangoria reader's wet dream. It is a tribute to the gore hounds who have gotten the Chucky franchise where it is today with their hard-earned money they make working in video stores. The closing credits even cover the bases as they present every actor in the film being unmercifully butchered. When I saw this movie months ago, the theater was empty. But I could hear the gore-lovers across the nation cheering.

In the midst of the blood and guts display that fails to go in any direction, Seed of Chucky still offers up quite a few laughs. Most of them come from Jennifer Tilly who boldly portrays herself as a starving actress willing to whor* herself off for a part. Ironically, the role she is vying for is that of the Virgin Mary in a film directed by Redman. Cult director John Waters also pops up in a hilarious cameo as a tabloid photographer who mistakes Chucky for a masturbating midget.

THE EXTRAS
The supplemental features contain a lot of material made exclusively for the DVD. Universal has really come through with insightful features and novelty pieces.

My favorite of all is the featurette Conceiving the Seed of Chucky. This doc*mentary not only talks about the film, but also looks back at the last two decades of Chucky films. Film buffs will especially love this look back on the murderous doll that has become a horror icon. FuZion Up Close With The Seed of Chucky Stars does not nearly stack up to the previously mentioned featurette. This is a set visit from some Entertainment Tonight wannabe with interviews lacking depth.

For those into pre-production development, a side-by-side storyboard comparison is available with some impressive drawings from the planning phase.

There are a couple of novelty gags included on the disc. Family Hell-iday shows the family looking at vacation slides and Heeeeeere's Chucky shows an interviewer embarrassing the satanic doll on broadcast TV by showing his audition tapes. These both are good concepts, but the jokes just end up being about brutally murdering people. Being that the movie really overplays the blood and gut jokes, these extras following the feature did not do much for me.

As well there is a commentary track with director Don Mancini and puppeteer Tony Gardner. Plus a deleted scene featuring actress Debbie Carrington almost taking the knife from Tiffany.
THE VIDEO
Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1 Aspect Ratio) The product on DVD is a nice finish. Like a lot of scary films, many scenes take place at nighttime, and the picture quality makes everything clear. As well, Mancini's fun directing style is like watching a music video with blood and guts.
THE AUDIO
Dolby Digital Surround 5.1. English Language. There is a whole lot of jumping going on with this one! My neighbor pounded on the wall a couple of times. In my sound rating system, this translates to terrific sound. There are a select few genres that can be enjoyed to the max in surround, and horror is one of those genres. With plenty of screams, evil laughter, and a jumpy musical score, be sure to have the surround sound revved up for this one.
THE PACKAGE
Standard DVD keep case. Chucky and Tiffany are shown overlooking a stroller. I am guessing the cover is somewhat of a play on the Rosemary's Baby video cover.

THE FINAL WORD
I really do like Chucky. Over the years he has gone from scary and intimidating, to a foul-mouthed toy with a bag full of jokes. While the Chuck does have his moments of funny time, it becomes drowned out in a puddle of stage blood.

The movie is brought up a notch thanks to some splatter and laughs out of the special features. Horror film students will bring back a lot, especially from the look back at the Chucky franshise.

Seed of Chucky is not a terrible movie in my eyes, but it is a disappointment. If the series is not put to rest soon, it may even lose the honor of being so bad that it's funny. After an unwise opening of the film AFTER Halloween, I will be curious to see how much energy Chucky has left in him. Father of Chucky anyone?

Questions? Comments? Just want to talk movies? Drop me a line at dodd@movieweb.com

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