Combustible Celluloid
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With: Ian Patrick Williams, Carolyn Purdy-Gordon, Carrie Lorraine, Guy Rolfe, Hilary Mason, Bunty Bailey, Cassie Stuart, Stephen Lee
Written by: Ed Naha
Directed by: Stuart Gordon
MPAA Rating: R
Language: English
Running Time: 77
Date: 22/05/1987

Dolls (1987)

3 Stars (out of 4)

'Doll' Maul

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Director Stuart Gordon began his career in Chicago underground theater, and then directed two notable H.P. Lovecraft movies, Re-Animator (1985) and From Beyond (1986). Dolls (1987) was his third feature, and though it has no Lovecraft origins, it's still just as perverse and bizarre. It begins with an ages-old setup: during a storm, several different travelers take cover in a mysterious old mansion. The residents are a kindly old couple (Guy Rolfe and Hilary Mason) that make extraordinary dolls. Among the visitors, only a little girl (Carrie Lorraine) -- the child of an anxious father (Ian Patrick Williams) and a vicious stepmother (Carolyn Purdy-Gordon) -- and a sensitive, teddy bear-ish man (Stephen Lee) who loves toys -- seem to be avoiding getting brutally murdered my mysterious, tiny, predators. Gordon infuses the gory attacks with his own infectious brand of nasty humor.

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