I think it’s safe to say we all grew up with Child’s Play at some point in our childhoods. From an early age, we picked our favorites, mine being the second one, and watched them over and over. Child’s Play (2019) was something that I initially thought was a joke. I thought, “There was no way we were actually getting a remake so soon after just receiving the repugnant entry that was Cult of Chucky (2017 – read our review here).” However, it would seem that not only was this movie being made, but it was also a complete reimagining.
Lars Klevberg’s Child’s Play is probably what directors should use as a blueprint when tackling a fan favorite franchise and remaking it. There is just enough nostalgia and familiarity in the film to keep the old fans happy, while also providing a new, fresh, inviting spin for new ones. This version of Child’s Play stars Aubrey Plaza (April from Parks and Recreation TV series), Gabriel Bateman (Lights Out 2016 – read our review here), and Star Wars‘ Mark Hamill as the new voice of Chucky. And what a cast it is!
Aubrey Plaza lends her unique brand of comedy to motherhood, and it lands perfectly. Gabriel Bateman is the newest actor to take on the role of Andy, and it needs to be said, I actually prefer this version of the little boy to the original. Mark Hamill lends his incredible talent of voice acting to the film, bringing us a quirky, odd, and downright creepy new personality to our favorite 2-foot tall killer.
In this version of the popular franchise, Chucky is not a possessed My Buddy wannabe. He is simply a bit of high-tech A.I. placed inside of a doll, kind of like Alexa or Siri. Why is he killing people, then? Well, the motive behind it isn’t all that deep. Most of the dolls have restrictions programmed into them, and this one doesn’t. To find out why, watch the first five minutes of the film, and you will be presented with a simple explanation that doesn’t have anything to do with the rest of the film’s runtime. Instead, Child’s Play is heavily character-focused. Finally, a film that actually has a plot and characters we are allowed to get to know.
Karen is a single mom raising her only child, Andy. After moving to a new city for a fresh start, she notices that Andy isn’t really making friends. He seems withdrawn and depressed. This is further exacerbated by the fact that his mother is dating an incessant prick that he cannot stand. It’s cool, though. Chucky is a ride-or-die friend that is willing to do anything, as long as he’s allowed to be your friend til the end… Okay, that was a bit corny, but whatever. Moving on!
The other aspect I loved about Child’s Play was the gore. Finally, we have a slasher film that isn’t afraid to let the blood spray and the guts fly! There are some moments that are left to the imagination, but we never get a completely off-screen death, and I am willing to compromise with that. Most films lately have just played it entirely too safe. *cough* I’m looking at you Halloween 2018 *cough* But Child’s Play does the complete opposite and decides to let its nuts hang, figuratively speaking, and I find it very refreshing.
Along with the blood and gore, we also get an abundance of well-placed humor. Aubrey Plaza is a goddamn comedic genius, and her timing is always on point. Here to help Aubrey is a completely awkward, sociopathic little monster named Chucky. The amount of moments I laughed during this movie, while never being taken from the edge of my seat, was impressive. I’m honestly thinking about going to see it again.
Child’s Play failed me in only one area. There is this intense buildup to the climax of the film. Everyone in the theater was holding their collective breath, waiting to see the final showdown. Two minutes later, it was over. Did you catch that? I compare the ending to this film to the super hot guy that ends up being a minute man. Luckily for this film, I really enjoyed everything else about the rest of it.
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Overall, I would give Child’s Play (2019) a 7 out of 10. It has laughs, gore, suspense, and a brilliant new concept that I hope we get to see grow. That’s right, I am praying we get a sequel because I need to see this with a bigger body count and on a larger scale. This film has great potential to create a brand new universe within the Child’s Play franchise. I’ll happily be its friend til the end.