Demonic Toys 2 (2010)

Demonic Toys 2 (2010)

You shouldn’t toy with your personal demons….

A small group of collectors head to a castle on the outskirts of Rome where they attempt to gain possession of the Divoletto doll, billed as the oldest toy in existence. However when they get there they find that the mysterious doll has brought to life the evil Demonic Toys who trap the group inside the castle.

 

Yet another of Charles Band’s formulaic ‘tiny terror’ films that he’s made a career out of, Demonic Toys 2 is a sequel to a film few people would have seen or remembered in the first place. In fact the Demonic Toys have appeared more in crossover films than they have their own franchise which says a lot about their drawing power. They took on the diminutive Dollman in the imaginatively-titled Dollman Vs Demonic Toys and then they fought the puppets from the Puppet Master franchise with the even-more-originally-titled Puppet Master Vs Demonic Toys. Now eighteen years after the original, they finally get their own standalone sequel. Was it worth the wait? Was it hell!

Only two of the original toys return – Baby Oopsy Daisy and the Jack-in-a-Box. Fans of the teddy bear or the robot will be disappointed and no doubt their exclusion is due to budgetary reasons. The newcomer, the devil puppet, looks like a relic from the Puppet Master series and is no way a capable replacement. Like most of Band’s ‘tiny terror’ films, if you can believe the idea that these small, weak and impractical toys can overpower and kill a full grown man, then no doubt your viewing experience will be much more enhanced than mine. Most of the time, the toys are just immobile puppets with little movement other than simple head turning or mouth opening. But and I stress this with importance, in some brief scenes they’re actually animated in CGI. I’m always bemoaning the use of CGI in horror films but not this time. The CGI looks as cheap and nasty as it usually does in low budget films but I’m pleased that the toys actually get more to do simply because they’re CGI and the film can show off a bit. If only some of the later Puppet Master films had gone down this route, they’d have been much the better.

Too often the stars of these films, the ‘tiny terrors’ as I keep calling them, are hardly on screen because it’s too costly to design puppets that move and too time consuming to turn them into stop motion monsters. CGI opens up the possibility that we may see more of these films in future and with the main stars of the show actually getting chance to do something worthwhile for a change instead of hanging around in the background. That said, the toys aren’t on screen for long. Baby Oopsy Daisy gets some humorous dialogue but it’s only funny because it’s obnoxious and foul language being spouted from a little doll.

As for the rest of the film, it’s your typical low budget Full Moon feature. There’s a bunch of eccentric characters gathered together for some reason. There’s about a million and one silly sub plots going on which all lead to nowhere in an attempt to disguise the fact that you hardly see the toys. There’s plenty of overacting going on. There’s an unnecessary light show at some point with smoke and bright lights illuminating some demonic human creature. There are a lot of scenes of characters skulking around in the dark, dank corridors and rooms of the castle. It’s the same set that they’ve used in previous Full Moon films (it’s Charles Band’s property apparently!) and it reeks of sameness. Typically of recent Full Moon efforts, the running time is short, the opening and closing credits take up valuable time and the rest of the film is dragged out as much as it can be.

 

Demonic Toys 2 is further proof that the toys were always sub-par knock-offs of the Puppet Master gang. This is a really feeble sequel which looks and feels cheap and gives us no indication that the quality of Full Moon films will ever return to that of their really creative early 90s output.

 

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