Friday, March 13, 2015

Film Review: Pinocchio's Revenge (1996)

Pinocchio's Revenge (Review)
United States/1996
Format Viewed For Review: Netflix Instant
Netflix Streaming: Yes
Amazon Prime: No

"It may not be frightening, but I enjoyed it."

Attorney Jennifer Garrick (Rosalind Allen) unwittingly brings home a wooden puppet belonging to a child murderer. Jennifer's daughter, Zoe (Brittany Alyse Smith), grows oddly attached...

Pinocchio's Revenge follows Jennifer and Zoe. Jennifer's most recent client, a child murderer, is put to death. On Zoe's birthday, Jennifer unwittingly brings a Pinocchio puppet home -- the puppet belonged to the child murderer. Zoe, who's already distraught from losing her father, grows attached. Zoe's behavior becomes more aggressive and Jennifer eventually begins to question her daughter's well-being and the puppet's influence. It leads to a well-executed climax and a decent ending -- I liked the pinch of uncertainty.

Pinocchio's Revenge is better than I could have ever imagined. It's far from perfect, but compared to some of the b-movie crud I've recently watched, Pinocchio's Revenge is decent. The film borrows quite a bit from Child's Play, but ultimately becomes a film of its own. It's not especially frightening, but it is certainly exciting and interesting. If you enjoy jump-scares, this film has plenty. Unfortunately, the suspense is minimal. Pinocchio's Revenge also has a surprising focus on character and buildup, and the climax was very satisfying. The one negative that stuck out like a sore thumb was Pinocchio's voice -- I actually chuckled when I first heard it -- it wasn't scary! There are also some cheesy 90s scenes, like a bizarre (not graphic) sex scene with repeated editing as if that would make it feel more passionate.

The acting isn't half-bad. Well, maybe it is half-bad. Rosalind Allen is mostly good. Brittany Alyse Smith is hit-or-miss. Dick Beals felt like a miscast - his voice work is strong, but far from frightening or creepy. I liked the soundtrack, it has a solid theme. The film is shot well enough, at least it didn't make my head hurt like certain films. Writer and director Kevin S. Tenney crafts a decent horror film. Although it's not particularly scary or even all that original, it ultimately works well as a slasher. The focus on character and buildup was also much appreciated.

Overall, Pinocchio's Revenge is a decent horror film. Sure, Child's Play is easily the better killer doll film, but that doesn't mean you cant enjoy Pinocchio's Revenge -- especially with the right expectations or, better yet, none at all! Anyway, I genuinely liked it. It has great buildup, decent character, a great climax, and a good ending. It may not be frightening, but I enjoyed it. Worth a rental or stream for open-minded horror fans and fans of Child's Play.

Score: 5/10
Parental Guide: Some strong violence and blood, some sex and full nudity.

No comments:

Post a Comment