Puppet Master 5: The Final Chapter (1994)

Puppet Master 5: The Final Chapter (1994)

Puppets Vs. An All New Evil!

After his last demon was destroyed by Rick and Toulon’s puppets, the demon Sutek creates a puppet of himself to get revenge. Rick’s actions have also drawn the attention of the authorities and The Omega Corporation, who want to get their hands on Toulon’s puppets. Soon a three way struggle is about to begin!

 

Shot at the same time as the last sequel, Puppet Master 5: The Final Chapter is potentially even worse and more pointless simply for the fact that at least in the last film there were numerous miniature demons battling the puppets – here there is just one. Instead there are more token human characters wandering aimlessly around the hotel looking for the puppets (and looking to get killed too I might add). However I must add that you need to see the previous film to understand what the heck is going on here and that may even be a stretch.

I can see the attraction in the Puppet Master films – little things hitting each other and blowing each other up is a fun concept, especially when the puppets can look as good as these. Again it’s the puppets that are the stars of the show and each show a lot more character and personality than their human counterparts. Blade is always the highlight as he’s the leader of the gang but the likes of Jester and Pinhead get a bit more screen time. And finally Torch makes an appearance (he was absent from the last part for some reason) although he might as well not have bothered. Their movements are limited and they don’t actually do a lot of walking around on the camera, instead preferring to stand still and growl or raise their arms. In fact you rarely see their legs at all unless they are standing against a wall – perhaps to avoid seeing the stage hand holding them up?

It’s a bit sad to see how the special effects in the series have gradually declined. I mean the first was no masterpiece but at least the puppets moved around. Now there are too many puppets, too much animation to do and not enough budget to cover it all. I guess what budget they had went into the ridiculous puppet Decapitron. As I said in the review for the last film, it’s a silly concept for the puppet given that Toulon created the puppets in Nazi Germany. The film always picks up when the puppets are on screen but dramatically reduces in quality when the humans take over. The main characters return from the previous film and they’re just as bad as they were previously. One of the females just spends the entire film in a coma, occasionally being involved in a dream sequence. And British actor Ian Ogilvy is on hand as the token evil British guy who attempts to steal the puppets but gets his comeuppance along with his cronies. The puppets stalking and killing humans thing got old in the earlier films so why they decided to retread old ground is anyone’s guess.

The story is all over the place here with some big contradictions with the last part. I can’t really understand why they felt the need to spread this whole demonic story across two films – one film would have been sufficient and, had they combined budgets and put their creative energies into making one film instead of two, then maybe the story could have worked. After all, we’d have had more puppet action and maybe some better effects. But with the budget clearing not scraping past Decapitron’s fancy laser weapons, the rest of the film suffers greatly. Sutek’s demon lair is a terrible stage set and looks like it belongs on some ropey 80s kids show. Even the hotel seems to consist of the same three rooms and two corridors. At least the signature Puppet Master theme tune is back which is still probably one of the series’ positives.

 

Puppet Master 5: The Final Chapter continues the self-destruction of the series with another weak entry. It’s hard to recommend this to even die-hard fans of the series but if you’ve seen Puppet Master 4 then you’ll no doubt have a burning desire to see the resolution of the story. Or maybe not…

 

 ★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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