Sunday, May 23, 2010

Puppet Master III: Toulon's Revenge - 2.5/5

What would a franchise be without a prequel and prequels were starting to become very popular starting in the 90's. Overall I'm not a fan of prequels as they tell a story that doesn't really need to be told as the audience knows the outcome from the previous films. Nothing is usually left up to surprise. Not with Puppet Master III however as it adds a lot of material not known by the audience and I actually had a better time watching this entry than the original film, which is not common especially in horror franchises.

This sequel tells the story of original puppet master Andre Toulon (now played by Guy Rolfe, perfectly cast I might add) and how he obtained his talent for reanimating inanimate objects while being in Nazi Occupied France. He becomes the interest of Nazis when they witness a puppet show of his which featured puppets with no strings. Wanting that special power, the Nazis force him to give them his secret. When Toulon refuses, they kill his wife and then Toulon re-animates his puppets for revenge!

Fans of the franchise will especially like as it gives back-story to each individual puppet and what innocent soul destroyed by the Nazis now resides inside the wooden interior. They even add another new puppet, this time in the form of Six Shooter who is a cowboy that has six arms each containing a small gun that can actually kill (one of my favorite lines is when a Nazi is investigating the death of an officer and discovers a small bullet saying "I've never seen a bullet this small." Classic b-movie material!). Adding this new puppet in a prequel does make one question "then why wasn't he in the first film" but one must not think too hard about the Puppet Master franchise our you will burst a blood vessel on the continuity errors (I did on many occasions). One aspect some fans may not like is that our puppets are more "good guys" in this picture but don't let that denture you as they still kill, just this time it's Nazi bastards! The Nazi's are lead by seasoned villain character actor Richard Lynch, one of my all time character actors and his presence brings this low budget film up in quality.

Going into this film people have to realize that this is a ultra low budget movie with a budget even less than a million dollars. Due to that you can't except this to be a realistic period piece and historically accurate. Trust me I know of people that complain about that. For a low budget B-movie sequel I found this very entertaining with a some great casting making this perhaps the best entry into the series. Director David DeCoteau, though not great or very visual, keeps the film together and David Allan's stop motion effects shine as usual. It seems Full Moon knew again they were going to have another huge video success as the beginning of the end credits promise "COMING SOON - PUPPET MASTER 4: WHEN BAD PUPPETS TURN GOOD."

Written By Eric Reifschneider

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