Child’s Play Blu-ray (Collector’s Edition)
Directed by: Tom Holland
Written by: Don Mancini, John Lafia, Tom Holland
Cast: Catherine Hicks, Chris Sarandon, Alex Vincent, Brad Dourif
Distributor: Scream Factory
Rated R | 87 Minutes
Release Date: October 18, 2016
“Hi, I’m Chucky, and I’m your friend till the end. Hidey-ho!”
Chucky, the pint-sized killer doll from 1988’s Child’s Play, is often mentioned in the same breath as slasher icons like Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger, but there’s something very unique about the denim dungaree-wearing antagonist in Tom Holland‘s film. While films like Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm Street play on teenage anxieties, punishing high school kids for drinking, smoking marijuana, and having premarital sex, Child’s Play is fixated on the fears of small children.
Five-year-old Andy Barclay (Alex Vincent) is entranced by commercials for “Good Guy” dolls on TV. The ads play during a “Good Guy” cartoon series, which Andy watches while wearing his “Good Guy” pajamas and eating “Good Guy” cereal. The commentary on Reagan-era consumerism is hard to miss here. His mom, Karen (Catherine Hicks), a widow struggling to make ends meet, buys Andy a “Good Guy” named Chucky for his sixth birthday, unaware that the doll is a plastic prison for the soul of Charles Lee Ray (Brad Dourif), a serial killer and voodoo practitioner.
A wanted fugitive, Ray is fatally shot in a toy shop by Chicago homicide detective Mike Norris (Chris Sarandon, Fright Night). Before he dies, the killer transfers his soul into Chucky using a voodoo spell, because how else are you supposed to imbue a child’s plaything with your homicidal essence? Once Chucky’s a member of the Barclay family, bad things happen. Andy’s babysitter, Maggie (Dinah Manoff, Grease), is beaten to death with a hammer and falls out a window. Young Andy, the prime suspect in the killing, is placed in a mental hospital. But when Karen discovers that Chucky’s batteries were never inserted, and that Andy was telling the truth about the doll coming to life, she seeks out Norris to help her kill Chucky and save her son.
Inspired by Cabbage Patch Kids and My Buddy dolls, Chucky is pure nightmare fuel and certainly a horror icon, even if the subsequent sequels to Holland’s satirical slasher are mostly forgettable. The reason Chucky is so damn memorable is thanks to the amazing work of special effects legends Kevin Yagher (A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, Sleepy Hollow) and Howard Berger (Aliens, Predator, Tremors). It’s really quite impressive how these artists “” along with performer Ed Gale “” take a redheaded doll in OshKosh B’Gosh and making him a walking, talking monster.
Child’s Play is a clever, gleefully depraved horror movie with some solid performances and great special effects. Scream Factory’s two-disc Collector’s Edition Blu-ray features a brand new 2K scan of the interpositive, presented in 1080p widescreen (1.85:1) and DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 tracks. While there have been several Blu-ray releases of Holland’s film, this is no doubt the best looking, sounding release out there. And with hours of special features, Scream Factory has yet another definitive edition of a cult classic to add to their film catalog. On the first disc there are three audio commentaries: a new one with Holland, as well as one with Vincent, Hicks, and Chucky designer Kevin Yagher, and then one with producer David Kirschner and screenwriter Don Mancini.
On disc two, there are a plethora of featurettes that detail the production of the film. These bonus materials include behind-the-scenes special effects footage from Howard Berger (60 minutes), Howard Berger: Your Special Effects Friend “˜Til The End (40 minutes), Life Behind the Mask: Being Chucky – an interview with actor Ed Gale (40 minutes), and Evil Comes in Small Packages (24 minutes), featuring interviews with Sarandon, Dourif, Hicks, Vincent, Yagher, and more. There’s also a few short materials, Chucky: Building a Nightmare (10 minutes), A Monster Convention (five minutes), and Introducing Chucky: The Making of Child’s Play vintage featurette (six minutes).
While it may be tempting to own the Chucky: The Complete Collection Blu-ray set or pickup a bargain bin copy, the transfer on those releases pales in comparison to this one. If you’re a die-hard fan of the series, you should absolutely pick up Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition, which is now available at Amazon. There’s also a Deluxe Limited Edition, which you can read more about here below!
Deluxe Limited Edition
The Deluxe Limited Edition contains an exclusive, limited edition 5Â½” tall “Good Guys Chucky” doll by NECA, a limited edition 18″ x 24″ poster of the newly-designed art from artist Justin Osbourn, a second slipcover featuring custom-made “Good Guys Doll” artwork, and a limited edition 18″ x 24″ poster of the custom-made “Good Guys Doll” artwork. You can purchase the Deluxe Limited Edition, which retails for $59.99, directly from Shout! Factory.