Anyone who knows me in person knows that I LOVE Chucky. He’s referred to as my son. I’ve got life size dolls, talking dolls, action figures, blankets, shirts, you name it. I either have it or I want it. With the remake/reboot film coming soon and a TV show on the horizon, I wanted to dive deep into Curse of Chucky and talk about why it’s so good.
Seed of Chucky was released in 2004 to not much fanfare. Since then it’s been a cult favorite and an LGBTQ flick that was way ahead of its time. But unfortunately, at the time, it killed the franchise. Chucky fans were at war with themselves, some saying it was about time it ended, others claiming Seed of Chucky was unfairly received. Regardless of public opinion - Chucky died.
Then in 2013 Curse of Chucky was quietly released straight to VOD and DVD and everyone was shocked. What was happening? Was the franchise restarting? Rebooting? Is everything that happened before in the movies being cancelled out?! But none of us really knew until we watched the flick and realized how clever Don Mancini really was.
The story starts 25 years after the first film when Chucky arrives in a box to the home of Nica Pierce (played by Fiona Dourif). She’s a paraplegic living with her Mother, Sarah (Chantal Quesnel). They unwrap the box and are confused by the arrival of this strange doll, and that night Sarah is found dead from an apparent suicide. Nica’s family gathers around her in her creepy old house. The family is filled with drama - her sister Barb (Danielle Bisutti) is cheating on her husband, Ian (Brennan Elliott) with the nanny, Jill (Maitland McConnell). Their young daughter Alice (Summer H. Howell) takes an immediate liking to the Chucky doll, just like all kids do in the movies. He’s a cute squishy doll with bright red hair who asks if you want to play with him, he’s your friend to the end! How can anyone say no?
Very quickly Chucky’s motives are revealed - he’s alive and he’s still killing. He poisons the chili the family eat for dinner, killing the priest, Father Frank (A Martinez) and claiming him as his second victim. Nica begins to investigate Chucky and finds online the events of the first half of the franchise. As we all know, Chucky is possessed by Charles Lee Ray, a serial killer. While Nica investigates, Chucky makes quick work of Jill by electrocuting her in her underwear. As the plot thickens, we find out that the father had placed a nanny cam inside of Chucky, suspicious of his wife. When she finds out she grabs Chucky in the attic.
But Barb notices something off about Chucky and begins to peel away the face, revealing beneath the twisted scarred mess we know Chucky for. He immediately bursts to life, killing Jill. Nica wakes up Ian, only to have him think she’s lost her mind and killed his entire family. She tries to explain that it was Chucky, but as we all know...that never works. Ian decides to review the footage from the nanny cam hidden inside Chucky and immediately realizes Nica was telling the truth.
But of course, it’s too late. It always is. Chucky chops off Ian’s lower jaw and traps Nica on the ground. And that’s when we find out what the connection is.
The plot twist in this particular Chucky tale is that Charles Lee Ray was a friend of the family. He was in love with Nica’s mom Sarah. Ray killed Nica’s father and took Sarah hostage while she was pregnant with Nica. Sarah betrayed him and in a rage Ray stabs her in the stomach, ultimately making Nica a paraplegic. He flees and this leads to our opening of Child’s Play.
Nica fights for her life but soon the cops arrive and finds Nica with a bloody knife and a lifeless doll. Nica is declared mentally insane and charged with the murder of her entire family.
That’s when things get even more interesting. Tiffany shows up, killing a cop, and stealing Chucky back. She mails him to where Alice, the only survivor, is staying, “Chucky, you found me!”
Then there’s an even more fun step….an after credits scene shows Andy all grown up receiving a package with...you guessed it...Chucky inside. Andy, who has lived a fucking hard life, and is our final boy, is way more prepared this time and promptly shoots Chucky in the head. Setting us up perfectly to be led into the sequel Cult of Chucky.
So why do I consider this such a perfect sequel?
First of all, no one loves Chucky more than Don Mancini, and it shows in this flick. As he mentions in the making of, people wanted Chucky to be scary again, and so he reset the timeline and pulled the wool over our eyes. We think it’s just starting over again, a reboot, but when Barb peels off Chucky’s face and we see the real Chucky beneath, it’s completely shocking. No one saw that coming. And in that one scene, all your fears are immediately put to rest. Chucky is in safe hands.
And Mancini is smart because he wants to refresh the story and so he adds onto Charles Lee Ray’s backstory, one we know nothing about. We’re given a new refreshing reason why Chucky is killing in this movie, that continues on into Cult of Chucky.
The best part of this movie is the casting of Fiona Dourif as Nica. Her father, Brad Dourif, has played Chucky since day one. And don’t get me wrong, Fiona is a fucking incredible actress, just look at any of the other work she’s done, but casting her in this was perfect. Charles Lee Ray and Nica are connected in a horrifying way and the Dourif’s play this to perfection.
And it resets the reason Chucky is killing. He’s going on a revenge tour - taking out the people who wronged him. The return of Tiffany is a fan pleaser and it works incredibly well. When she pops up from the backseat and kills the cop, “you never learn...so who’s next?” it can only evoke a cheer of joy. The very end, the after credit scene, brings back Alex Vincent as Andy who is now an adult.
We have our scary Chucky back and he’s out for blood. We have Andy back, we have a newcomer who can continue to carry the series with Fiona Dourif and we have everything that made the Chucky films great. Practical effects, one liners, “women. Can’t live with them. Period.”
Curse of Chucky feels like coming home in every way possible. It’s an incredible addition to the franchise that brought a breath of fresh air and uniqueness, and pulled off something that most franchises can’t do.
I salute you Don Mancini, and I love you.
Also, here’s me and my son, we love a top knot!
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