In October of 1998, twenty years ago now, I went with a friend to the theater. Bride of Chucky was our film for the day. While seeing all the original Child’s Play films in the comfort of my own home, the desire to see Chucky on the big screen was too great to pass up. Plus this time they included a girl doll. Tiffany. While most people wondered why I would want to see such a film in the theater, this did make my desire any less to do so.
Bride of Chucky is either one of the Chucky films people love or hate. No grey area exists most of the time. To be entirely honest, despite the excessive amounts of gore in Bride of Chucky and Seed of Chucky (2004), the two films are two of my favorite guilty pleasure horror films. The comedy mixed in with the gore makes for a perfect guilty pleasure. The original Child’s Play (1988) is far more serious in comparison. Well, as serious as a horror film can be involving a possessed talking “Good Guy” doll.
Within the original film, known serial killer Charles Lee Ray “The Lakeshore Strangler” transfers his spirit in a voodoo ritual into one of the “Good Guy” dolls. Anyone who had a “My Buddy” or “Kid Sister” doll was never able to look at their doll the same way again. If one was not creeped out by dolls before they were afterward. I however felt the urge to own the life size version of the Tiffany instead. Granted the first couple of times stepping into the room where I had her sitting in the chair freaked me out a bit. Not because I was afraid she was going to go on a killing spree, but because she took getting used to after purchasing. Now she just chills with Chucky.
The Bride of Chucky is about the murderous Charles Lee Ray and his girlfriend during his death Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly). She desires to get the doll once more because she knows Ray’s spirit is inside of the Chucky (Brad Dourif) doll. Breaking into the police station she manages to attain the doll and brings him back to her place. Tiffany unsuccessfully attempts to transfer his spirit into one of her ex lovers, Damien (Alexis Arquette). After a failed attempt, Chucky becomes determined that if he cannot gain a human body, he will bring Tiffany down to his level.
One night Chucky performs the same ritual on Tiffany as he did himself and transfers Tiffany’s spirit into the bride doll that she bought him as a joke to keep him company. Soon she wakes up in the doll and she realizes her purchase of the doll is not as funny as she once thought. Chucky reveals that he can change back into a human if he attains his ambulant from his original burial spot, but he knows he needs to find the right vessel. He even offers to change Tiffany back as well. Upon agreeing to this, Tiffany admits that she knows the perfect vessels. Tiffany plans for her neighbor Jesse (Nick Stabile) to take the two dolls to a “friend” of hers upstate. She knows he will also be taking his girlfriend, Jade (Katherine Heigl) along for the ride so she can get away from her overprotective uncle Cheif Warren Kincaid (John Ritter).
After the two begin to make their way upstate chaos begins to enuse. All the murders Tiffany and Chucky make are suddenly blamed on both Jesse and Jade. Their friend David (Gordon Michael Woolvett) attempts to warn them of their newfound Bonnie and Clyde status, until he soon starts to believe that there might be more truth to the story than they are willing to admit. Besides, even if someone believed that two crazed dolls with serial killers inside of them, one notorious and one who has dodged jail, who would even begin to believe that story? Jesse and Jade have to figure out how to clear their names instead of having numerous murders hoovering over their heads they did not commit.
The acting is not a masterpiece. However, I enjoy the campy nature of the film all the same, Both Jennifer Tilly’s time as a human within the film and as the doll Tiffany are quite hilarious. She embraces the doll’s body. She figures if she must live in the doll’s body for a while she might as well have her flare. Somehow this comes off funnier than it was probably intended. The odd part about most films in this nature. Most of them do not set out to be particularly funny, but because of the dialogue and the portrayals onscreen the humor just happens.
One of the scenes specifically, involves Chucky and Tiffany deciding that they are going to consummate their relationship as dolls. This is one of those instances while you’re sitting in a theater and become morbidly curious. How on earth are these two dolls going to have sex? The funniest part of the scene is when Tiffany asks him if he has a rubber. What is Chucky’s reply? “Have I got a rubber? Tiff, look at me. I’m ALL rubber.” For some reason lines like that one makes most of the acting sometimes comes off as laughable. I refuse to place all the blame on the actors because the script writer has a hand in the writing as well.
Overall, Bride of Chucky is one of those recommendations that one makes to a friend in need of a good laugh. I do love the blending horror and comedy that work for some reason. Maybe that’s because it blends fear and laughter that makes one feels better. After all this is just a film. No killer dolls dare come after someone. Besides, who wants to admit to fearing a rubber doll? Not many people, but when one brings on the laughs it makes for a gore infested laugh fest worth the viewing.