Dolls

 (493)6.31 h 17 min1986R
The Hartwicke's vast collection of dolls is fun to play with and nice to look at, but beneath the painted faces of their lifelike dolls lie murderous creatures with a vengeance for blood!
Directors
Stuart Gordon
Starring
Guy RolfeStephen LeeCarolyn Purdy-Gordon
Genres
Horror
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English

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Supporting actors
Ian Patrick WilliamsCarrie LorraineBunty BaileyCassie Stuart
Producers
Charles BandBrian YuznaDebra Dion
Studio
MGM - Film
Rating
R (Restricted)
Content advisory
Smokingalcohol usefoul languagesexual contentviolence
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

493 global ratings

  1. 81% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 9% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 2% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 5% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

MonicaReviewed in the United States on August 12, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
ppl don’t spoil the movie in your review, that is so weird
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I remember this movie but it was nice to see it all these decades later . It was sort of funny to me , exciting but comical. There are some pretty good actors/actresses.
Most importantly, why would any one leave a detailed description of ANY movie in a review column? That is strange to me. Haven’t you anything better to do but to sit and type out that crap? Why spoil the movie for ppl who haven’t seen it. Again, who has the time to type a detailed line by line, scene by scene review to a movie. GET A LIFE
15 people found this helpful
John's Horror CornerReviewed in the United States on June 22, 2019
4.0 out of 5 stars
A heavy dose of 80s-nostalgic murderous stop-motion demon dolls. I loved it!
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This might be the first killer doll movie featuring several stop-motion dolls. And even if it’s not, it’s fun and gory and clearly influenced many of our favorite subsequent evil dolls films.

After finding their car stuck in the mud during a storm (such a classic trope, by the way), David (Ian Patrick Williams; Re-Animator, Bad Channels, Growth), Rosemary (Carolyn Purdy-Gordon; Re-Animator, From Beyond, The Pit and the Pendulum) and their daughter Judy (Carrie Lorraine; Poltergeist II) seek shelter in a nearby mansion.

The mansion is occupied by elderly dollmaker couple Gabriel (Guy Rolfe; Puppet Master 3-5 & Retro, The Bride) and his hospitable wife Hilary, and as soon as welcoming Judy’s family in from the rain, they give her a jester doll to keep her company: Mister Punch. Then more wayward travelers (an awkward motorist and two young punkettes) join the cast for the sake of a larger body count. Shortly after their arrival, Judy discovers that the dolls seem to be alive… and they tend not to like adults.

The creature effects are quite satisfying for 1987 (and on a budget). This classic gets off to a glorious start with an engaging monster scene when Judy’s teddy bear turns into a big monstrous demon bear. The dolls throughout the mansion have human-like veiny eyes that move about and they smile to bare mangled demonic tiny teeth. Mischievous and menacing little things—clearly inspiration for Charles Band’s (executive producer of Dolls) soon to follow Puppet Master (1989).

Most of the early “action” occurs off-camera but remains feisty as victims are slammed into things or dragged down halls. Later, the stop-motion doll attacks are wonderful and abundantly visualized. They bite and stab and literally saw victims as the victims kick and stomp them away. I feel like the mobs of stop-motion dolls inspired Tales from the Hood (1995), and we often see numerous animated dolls on-screen at a time which, back in the 80s, was a big deal in special effects.

The special effects develop when the dolls start dying en masse. It’s reminiscent of Gremlins (1984) being doused with water—appropriately gross and creature effects-rich. The transformation scene of the man into a doll was pretty spiffy as well—including protruding cheek bones and a developing hunchback. And we come to find that other victims end up as dolls in the likeness of their life, bestowing the film a more haunting menace.

Although I’d consider it among his lesser 1980s works, director Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, From Beyond, Dagon) manages to create a thriving triumph from an otherwise simple premise for which writer Ed Naha (Troll, CHUD II: Bud the Chud, Dollman) permits those most innocent and purest of heart to triumph.
7 people found this helpful
A.JReviewed in the United States on May 25, 2017
4.0 out of 5 stars
My face watching this movie.
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It has been years since I had seen this movie. It was way back in the early 90's when I rented the VHS from a local video store.

I bought this blu-ray on a whim and upon watching it I see that the movie is more or less how I remembered it, surprisingly. It is fun and creepy to watch the dolls at first, looking for any little movement. As you might imagine with a movie from the 80's, there is a lot of stop-motion animation going on when the dolls start running around. I've never been a fan of the way that type of thing looks. But it's best not to dwell on it when watching Dolls or it will just take you right out of it.

Oh, and the dolls in this movie are ugly and mad creepy. Like, I can completely understand why the people in the movie immediately want to smash them at first sight. If you already don't like porcelain dolls, this movie will compound that. I found the whole thing nightmarish, even if it was kind of corny.

The little girl Judy with her little double-chin is totally endearing and you feel bad for her. The parents suck of course so when Judy witnesses something happen they don't believe her and tell her off. You can guess how things play out from there.
12 people found this helpful
B&S About MoviesReviewed in the United States on September 3, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
Are you afraid of dolls?
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Six people are stranded at a mansion in the English countryside — David Bower and Rosemary Bower (Carolyn Purdy-Gordon, wife of Stuart Gordon), two totally selfish and uncaring parents, and their daughter Judy. Plus, we have nice guy Ralph and two British punk rock hitchhikers, Isabel (played by Bunty Bailey, who starred in two landmark music videos for the band A-Ha) and Enid.

The mansion is owned by Gabriel and Hilary Hartwicke (Hilary Mason, the blind psychic from Don’t Look Now), toy makers who fill their home with their creations. As Judy had to give up her old teddy bear by her evil stepmother, they give her a new doll, Mr. Punch.

We soon discover that the dolls are alive and love to destroy humans — the eviler the better. The two girls try to steal antiques and get their faces smashed in and shot by toy soldiers before becoming dolls themselves. Rosemary is attacked by the dolls, then leaps out a window to her death. Her body is brought back to the house, leading David to believe Ralph is a killer.

Meanwhile, Judy reveals to Ralph that the dolls are alive and talks them into saving his life. David attacks, knocking out his daughter and the man he blames for his wife’s death, but the dolls save them. Mr. Punch battles David but is destroyed.

The old owners of the house reveal themselves and explain that the house tests people. Either they pass — like Ralph and Judy. Or they fail, like everyone else, and are turned into dolls. It just depends on who believes in the power of childhood. David now becomes Judy’s new doll, Judy picks Ralph to be her new dad and she leaves for home.

Meanwhile, we see all the evil folks as dolls on the shelf as new people get stuck outside the house and the cycle begins again.

Dolls is a Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, Castle Freak) film and feels like a test run for the Demonic Toys movies. There are some moments of great invention, like the giant evil teddy bear and the eyeballs popping out of the punk girl. It was a theatrical release that actually didn’t do well, but found new life on video — where a young version of my wife found it and rented it just about every day.

Interestingly enough, the house where the movie was filmed once belonged to Dino De Laurentiis. It was an actual two-story house, but the outside of the house featured remnants of other De Laurentiis films, including Barbarella!
2 people found this helpful
demonsRendangeredReviewed in the United States on September 13, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Not really horror but....
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This movie seems like what could be considered classic 80's to me if I had ever watched it back then. I wouldn't consider it real horror like say A Nightmare on Elm Street or Friday the 13th but there are elements of gore and creepiness.

The actors are fairly good, even the little girl played her part well. I think the real talent in this were the old couple though. They really nailed their character's part in this movie. Definitely worth a watch if your a fan of 80's movies and I must say the ending of this one put a smile on my face.
Ben30Reviewed in the United States on January 30, 2013
5.0 out of 5 stars
A CLASSIC STUART GORDON FILM GETS BLU-RAY RELEASE FROM SCREAM FACTORY
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Stuart Gordon fans who love this DOLLS film
which was actually filmed a few weeks before shooting started on FROM BEYOND
both DOLLS/FROM BEYOND were filmed back to back

DOLLS which was fist released on MGM DVD over 8 years ago now
has now been reissued on blu-ray by scream factory
for some fans who don't know the plot
2 Elderly couples played by Actors Guy Rolfe & Hillary mason who both practice Witchcraft
transform people into Dolls, little Dolls in their Old mansion,
both Actors give amazing performances as 2 very creepy elderly couples
who are both Witches in the film
watch the rest of the film to get whole storyline

Scream factory have given some more respect to this film than MGM didn't
a new Blu-ray transfer in 1:85:1 widescreen has been given in 1080p High definition,
the picture quality looks amazing better than the old MGM dvd release
also a new 5.1 master audio mix has been given aswell
when the old dvd release was just Dolby digital Audio quality, so the blu-ray has big difference in quality
there's also 2 sided cover art to choose from

Scream factory have also added a new retrospective making of featurette TOYS OF TERROR only goes for 35mins
but still worth watching
all new interviews with
Director Stuart Gordon, Producer Brian Yuzna, Actors Carolyn Purdy & Ian patrick williams
and writer Ed Naha and Executive producer on the film Charles band are also interviewed
Cassie stuart who played the little Girl in the film unfortunately was not interviewed
also Actor Stephen lee who befriends the little girl in the film passed away this year
but the special effects mechanical effects team who made the DOLLS are also interviewed
the special effects team for the DOLLS speak in Great detail about how the DOLLS were made to look Alive
very interesting 35mins that's for sure
plus the 2 Audio commentary tracks from the old MGM DVD release
are added to this blu-ray aswell, the 2 commentaries were recorded back in 2005-2006
but interesting commentaries nethertheless
Story board to film comparison & Theatrical trailer are also on this blu-ray

the old MGM DVD release only had 2 Audio commentaries for special features
this new blu-ray release has the Audio commentaries plus a new making of featurette
so the Decision is easy buy the Blu-ray release, Definitely time for an upgrade
i gave this new blu-ray 5 stars for sure.
5 people found this helpful
EinsatzReviewed in the United States on March 27, 2017
4.0 out of 5 stars
“Toys are very loyal. And that’s a fact.”
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Stuck in the mud, a nasty couple and a little girl take refuge during a thunderstorm in a very convenient house. They break in but are welcomed anyway by an old couple willing to let them spend the night. During dinner, three more people burst in. With a full house, the lodgers take to their rooms to wait out the storm. Naturally, not everyone stays put. And not everyone is nice. The other (smaller) inhabitants do not take to the interlopers. Blood is spilled. People lose their way. There is a reckoning.

A bit fractured but still fun. It’s brief and to the point. The dialog is cringe-worthy. The acting is decidedly mixed, wavering from sheer incompetence to barely passable. Still, I have an obliging and begrudging fondness for its ineptitude.
3 people found this helpful
Steve dolanReviewed in the United States on March 25, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
The Grimms Would be Proud
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Don't mistake this film for a horror movie. It is not. It is a fairy tale that would fit well within any collection of the Grimms. The focus is on the morality of the tale and the concept of "do unto others." If you don't have a background in the original versions of most popular fairy tales, the majority of them have violence and occasional disturbing moments, just like this film does. But, like the original fairy tales, the focus is not on the violence or disturbing material, rather it is trying to teach a specific moral lesson about how people should treat each other. It's definitely worth a watch, and it's a good intro horror movie for interested children because of the decrease in scares and increase in lessons being taught. It genuinely brought a smile to my face at the end.
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