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PUPPET MASTER 4 - 2 Slimes
Rated R
Copyright 1994 Full Moon Entertainment
Reviewed by Panic Attack on 18 January 2010

The Characters:  

  • Rick Myers - A whiz kid who takes care of the hotel on Bodega Bay while researching artificial intelligence; he is scarily overzealous while playing laser tag with robots and puppets.
  • Susie - Rick's girlfriend. Is handy with the ol' acid bottle.
  • Cameron - An obnoxious, geeky college grad who either shouts obsceneties about his friends when angry or shrieks when being attacked by tiny, evil demons. Clawed to death.
  • Lauren - Cameron's psychic gal pal. I wouldn't want her around, though; the girl can't even defend herself from one itty-bitty Totem.
  • Dr. Baker and Dr. Piper - Two fodder doctors.
  • The Puppets - Blade, Pinhead, Six-Shooter, Jester, and Tunneler, and Decapitron. A far cry from how they've been portrayed beforehand, now they're kind and gentle (except to Totems).
  • The Totems - Controlled by extradimensional rubber demon, Sutek, they are a trio of ugly, puppet-sized demons. Drilled and electrocuted to death.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

Rick Myers is a boy wonder in the position of caretaker at the old Bodega Bay hotel. Even though puppet-related shenanigans have gone on at the place before, nobody remembers and Rick is left in solitude with his two stupid robots, free to play laser tag, research his A.I. project, and complain about robot stupidity all he wants.

His superiors Dr. Baker and Dr. Piper are content in the boring position of watching robotic arms perform the most mundane of tasks and writing down artificial intelligence-related notes. That is, until a couple of Totems are FedExed direct from the underworld to bust some balls, and stop their evil master Sutek's secret of life from being discovered. They kill Baker and Piper.

Meanwhile, puppet Blade is the only one still active in the Bodega Bay Inn. He spends most of his time sitting around uselessly and waiting for Rick to rediscover his buddies in the trunk of Andre Toulon. Eventually Rick gets that point with a little help from his friends, loosens the sucker up with acid, and rediscovers the rest of the puppets.

Rick has a look at Toulon's diary and discovers the secret to waking puppets up, and he's more than happy to do so, injecting the whole lot of them with brain juice. They hit it off with Rick immediately, but don't take kindly to the much geekier-looking Cameron. I symphasize with him.

Suffering from a severe case of puppet envy, Cameron and Lauren use Toulon's Ouija board and inadvertantly pull the Totems that knocked off Baker and Piper out of it. The two are joined by another Totem sent to the hotel, and proceed to kill Cameron as he tries to make his getaway with Lauren. The Totems spend the rest of the film jumping on the humans and demonstrating their poor hand-to-tiny-hand combat skills, falling quickly to good ol' fashioned puppet might. A Totem still manages to frighten Lauren into submission, but is caught in the act of life force-stealing by Susie, who covers the little S.O.B. in acid.

This Totem is more powerful though, giving the puppets an excuse to wake up the incomplete, electrified Decapitron to zap him into oblivion.

The film ends with as much finality as the first two LOTR movies.

Is this film any good? Well, the villian, Sutek, looks like he was pulled straight out of the Power Rangers, which may mean something different to you than it did to me(I snorted in derision). Decapitron is sort of cool-looking, and ridiculously overpowered. You get to see the puppets in a few more action sequences, fighting enemies on their scale. Seeing Tunneler put a big hole in a Totem with appropriate sound effects is sort of fun, as is Six-Shooter staging an impromptu electrocution, cowboy-style.

Making the puppets the heroes seems like a shot at making them more marketable(and it probably is). Even though they weren't the bad guys in part III, they were morally ambiguous and did more exciting things, like shooting and bursting out of Nazis. The Totems are just not cool. They look like an awkward fusion between Red Pyramid and an armed, flightless bat. They don't create as much memorable carnage as the puppets do either, unless seeing a bunch of geeks get scratched to death is your thing.

The plot has a sci-fi bent this time around, and is so ambitious, not one movie can hold it. Yes, this is followed closely after by part 5. On a technical level, this is probably one of the best in the series. The little guys have never looked or sounded better. For a more interesting fusion of cheese and gore, however, you probably should have a look at the other installments.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Puppets are bad in the kitchen.
  • Little demons explode when electrocuted.
  • Puppets are naturals at laser tag.
  • When being attacked by something less than two feet tall, the sensible course of action is to hide under a coffee table.
  • Never lock your girlfriend out of your car. Or if you do, thoroughly search it beforehand.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • It sounds like Darth Vader but has the hands of Khatadin.
  • Ah, a program that synthesizes a little boy playing with building blocks.
  • Why allow mysterious, ugly, and unmarked packages into a research building?
  • I wonder what Charles Band gets in return for his constant Quiet Riot promotion.
  • Pinhead: master of literal-mindedness (and pinching).
  • Wow, Lauren is a vitrioleuse.
  • Totem go BOOM!

Quotes: 

  • Rick: "Nazis?"
    Cameron: "I hate those guys."
  • Andre Toulon: "I am with you, Puppet Master."

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

FileDialog
Green Music Note pupmasteriv1.wav Sutek: "The secret Andre Toulon stole from us those many years ago. We must send our children to protect it. They will punish those who try to uncover our world, our secret, our power!"
Green Music Note pupmasteriv2.wav Rick: "'I must escape Germany before the Gestapo finds me and the formula falls into the wrong hands. Von Kursting, the printer, will forge me a passport.' So this Toulon wasn't a Nazi. The Nazis were after him. They wanted to know how he animated his puppets, and he was afraid of what they'd do with that power."
Cameron: "Duh."
Green Music Note pupmasteriv3.wav Cameron: "I mean, you're the one who kept asking about 'em. You're the one who found the right box. If it wasn't for your gifts he'd still think they were just...dolls."
Green Music Note pupmasteriv4.wav Possessed Lauren: "Rick Myers, you must animate the Decapitron."
Susie: "Lauren?"
Rick: "Who are you?"
Possessed Lauren: "The Puppet Master."

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 

ImageImageImage
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 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clippupmasteriv1.mpg - 6.4m
Sutek hates it when he loses a minion due to improper grounding.

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Internet Movie Database


ALSO SEE:



Comments:Write CommentPages: [1]
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #1. Posted on January 18, 2010, 10:18:27 PM by InformationGeek
I'm not really a Puppet Master fan or even watcher of the series. Puppets of all shapes and sizes kind of scare me in some way.

You know, looking at those photos, I swear I seen some of those people or monsters before.



The big one looks like a cross between Skeltor and the monster alien from Phantsmagoria 2.



Is that Vanilla Ice with glasses?
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #2. Posted on January 19, 2010, 10:11:46 AM by BTM
I remember actually watching this film way back when.  What's funny is they had extras on the VHS (yes, on the VHS) with a short "Making of", and I think everyone involved was taking the film waaaaay more seriously than the material deserved. 

I remember of the main bad guy the designers were saying, "Yeah, the script was really vague about the monster, just saying that he was the ruler of the fifth dimension, so he had a lot of leeway as to how we were going to portray him." 

Oh, yeah...
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #3. Posted on January 19, 2010, 10:45:58 AM by Andrew


Is that Vanilla Ice with glasses?


That's exactly what I thought when I saw him, and this picture is probably the one scene and angle that makes him look the most like Vanilla Ice.
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #4. Posted on January 19, 2010, 12:06:35 PM by Ash
Actually, he looks more like Snow than Vanilla Ice.



Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #5. Posted on January 19, 2010, 11:09:19 PM by Andrew (A Different One)
I recall seeing this and thinking "you must reanimate the decapitron" was the most hilarious line ever. My friends could not stop me from saying it constantly. I am amazed I suffered so few Puppet Master related injuries.
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #6. Posted on January 22, 2010, 03:23:10 PM by Santi
Funny... the word "sutek" means "nipple" in polish :)
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #7. Posted on January 22, 2010, 10:09:15 PM by Rembrandt36
Can someone explain the Quiet Riot reference? I don't see the straight-jacketed metal masked maniac anywhere.
Re: Puppet Master 4
Reply #8. Posted on August 07, 2013, 05:28:07 PM by SwitchbladeSamurai
I remember watching this movie when I was a kid.  We used to rent this from the video store down the street when my brother was going to babysit me.  As a kid I used to be scared by this movie.  Its funny now but back then it didn't take much to scare me.  The puppet master movies were always a lot of fun.  Even the newer ones are pretty good, I mean they are still low budget but they're still entertaining.
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