#27 -- Dolly Dearest (1992)

Director: Maria Lease
Rating: 2 / 5

I think, possibly, a good approach to making a horror movie is to find something relate-able and make it do awful things. For example: an evil car, a television, a cell phone, an animal, or...the several killer doll films that have been made throughout the years. It is a good approach. I think they're aiming to make us think, "Hey! This could actually happen!" And, thus, scare us shitless. And, as we've seen, it can be done quite successfully. But not here. 

First, a man is excavating a tomb (turns out to be part of the Mayan ruins). A big stone door falls on top of him and kills him. And this has set free...red squiggly lines. What!? Yes, red squiggly lines. They enter a nearby building, and the credits roll. I'm not sure if the filmmakers were trying to be mysterious, but...it doesn't work. 

A man moves his family to Mexico, so he can work in a factory making dolls. Yes, he goes to freakin' Mexico to make dolls. As if that isn't bad enough, when he gets there, he finds that he has been lied to and the "fully-functioning" factory is a shithole. But, his daughter Jessica just HAS to have one of the dolls. After all, he's uprooted her from the only place she knew; he's taken her away from her friends. So, naturally, she would want a new friend. And it's no surprise that Jessica and Dolly become very close. Jessica turns into a little - ahem - bitch. She starts acting out and having tantrums all the time, when I'm sure she was such a little angel before. The red squiggly lines have possessed the dolls. 

Dolly is creepy enough, I guess. She looks like an old lady, but...maybe some people have a phobia of the elderly? I'm not sure, but it doesn't quite work that well for me. To me, Jessica was far creepier than the doll that was supposed to scare me. She gets black rings around her eyes and starts talking in a deep, demonic voice while threatening her mother's life. She's frightening. The doll? Just lame. But, at least we get warnings from them. When any of the - I think three - dolls says, "It's time to play!" we know shit's goin' down. But what, exactly, is goin' down? Well, honestly...not much. 

An old Mexican woman is electrocuted in a random pool that's in the basement. A fat Mexican man has his hand run through a sewing machine, and then apparently his heart tries to jump out of his chest (we actually see what looks like a ball thumping around in there), and it is claimed as a heart attack. The dolls try to run Jessica's father through some sort of large mixer, but they fail. And, that's all I can remember (I just got finished watching it, so that can't be a good sign). Either there weren't any other kills, or they were just THAT forgettable. Either way, it makes me feel like I've wasted my time with it. 

Okay, so why are the dolls possessed by red squiggly lines? Well, it's some sort of Mayan demon-child. It wants to get the children (for a reason I'm not sure was actually explained), so naturally they would choose to possess dolls. Obviously, they only want female children. If they wanted boys, they'd possess, maybe...a tonka truck? So then, every time you'd hear "Beep beep!" you'd know shit was goin' down. Anyways, the purpose? All I could get from it was that they wanted to begin a "reign of terror." That's it. They wanted to scare people. Well, way to go really-inadequate-demon-child! You suck, because you didn't scare me - not one bit. 

This guy was my favorite part of the movie.

And after the big elaborate plan by the demon-children, and what it took for everyone to figure out (and believe) what was going on, how did they stop them? They blew them up. Really? That is the most cop-out ending I've ever seen. It's like they couldn't quite figure out how to end it, but they didn't want to give up the project. So, naturally...But, my first thought was, "It's a demon. Shouldn't it be able to magically or supernaturally rise from the ashes?" But, no. They blew it up, and that was it. It's too easy. And I don't like that. It's a horror movie, and I want to see a friggin' fight. And I mean a REAL fight. Not just being chased around by a little doll and then defeating it with the first idea you have. It should keep coming back, over and over to kick some ass, until - FINALLY - someone is smart enough to figure out how to defeat it. 

I read a review about this movie a couple weeks ago. The reviewer claimed that this was one of the best killer-doll movies out there. Well...I know I'm not supposed to compare things, but...She ain't no Chucky. That is all. Not-recommended at all. It gets two stars instead of one because of the few parts here and there that made me laugh. 

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