Synopsis: A young scientist working on an artificial intelligence project is the target of strange gremlin-like creatures, who are out to kill him and thus terminate his research. By coincidence, in one of the rooms he uses, there's a mysterious case containing the puppets of the "puppet master". When the puppets are brought to life, they help destroy the creatures.
The whole Puppet Master series has always been one that intrigued me. The puppets like Blade and Pinhead are instantly recognizable. They always seem to toggle right on the line of good and evil. In the first Puppet Master, they were essentially evil until Neil threw Jester against a chair and they turned on him. In part 2, they are evil. Part 3 is a prequel and while they are killing for good, they are only doing it to get revenge for their master Andre Toulon. Part 4 is the first movie that really marked them as being on the side of good and fighting against evil.
A demon lord from hell sends 3 servants called totems to kill anyone who knows the secret to animation. Three scientists are on the verge of discovering Toulon's secret. Two of those scientists are killed very quickly. The third, Rick, is working on the secret at the Bodega Bay Inn (the site of the previous PM movies). Rick and three of his friends find the puppet Blade and later find the trunk with the other puppets; Jester, Tunneler, Pinhead, and Six Shooter (my personal favorite). In that trunk, that also find the elixir to animate them. They bring them back to life. Right around this time, the three demons show up and the puppets, along with the newest arrival Decapitron, fight the Totems and protect Rick.
This is a solid example of the movies that are so awesomely bad. The demons look extremely cheesy. It is hard to take the threat of the totems seriously. They are literally like a foot tall yet there manhandling the humans they were killing. But despite that, this is one of those movies that you can't figure out why, but you like it.
I have to give kudos to Full Moon for wiping the cobwebs off this one and bringing it back to us. Releasing this on Blu-ray was a great idea. I own the Puppet Master box set and decided to properly review this, I would have to watch the original version that I have and than the remastered Blu-ray. The difference was night and day. I was actually surprised at the difference in picture and sound quality. Everything looked so crisp. For me this was awesome because it made the cheesy special effects actually look better. Everything from the totems to the lasers guns to the energy beam that Decapitron shot, all looked much better. I mean, they still look cheesy but just not as bad. This was a straight to DVD release in '93 so if you were expecting cutting edge FX, you are going to be very disappointed.
I consider this movie in its original version to be a must own movie. But after seeing this in Blu-ray, I may have to update the version I currently own. And I'd recommend everyone else do that same.
reviewed by Bobby
thanks to blu-ray.com for the images for the Puppet Master 4.