Puppet Master: Axis of Evil – USA, 2010

‘The legends of horror have returned!’

Puppet Master: Axis of Evil is a 2010 horror feature film directed by David DeCoteau from a screenplay by Domonic Muir [as August White]. It was edited by Danny Draven (Patient SevenGhost Month; Reel Evil; Dark Walker). The movie stars Levi Fiehler, Jenna Gallaher, Taylor M. Graham, Tom Sandoval, Jerry Hoffman, Erica Shaffer and Ada Zhou Fang.

The Ninja Puppet, special makeup and mechanical effects were designed by Gage Munster.

Plot:

Bodega Bay Inn, 1939. Danny Coogan (Levi Fiehler) is making wooden chairs for a wedding reception for his Uncle Len (Jerry Hoffman). Danny tells his uncle that if it was not for his limp, he would be able to go to war, along with his brother Don (Taylor M. Graham), and tells his Uncle that he’s going to help Andre Toulon.

Toulon went to America to hide from the Nazis. As Danny’s heading over to Toulon’s room, he hears a gunshot. Two men dressed in black leaving Toulon’s room push Danny aside. He finds Toulon dead with a gun in his hand. Danny, to whom Toulon showed his puppets, grabs them out of a wall panel, along with unanimated Six Shooter and another puppet, named Ninja…

Reviews:

“The animation that made Toulon’s puppets so cool in the first three Puppet Master films is nowhere to be found here, except in instances when stock footage from the original Puppet Master film is incorporated…” Steve Miller, The Charles Band Collection

“Most of the puppet killing spree is limited to the final act of the movie […] Instead we follow the story of Danny and his girlfriend Beth (a gorgeous Jenna Gallaher) as they try to uncover the secret Nazi plan and then stop them. The acting is pretty good, although a little corny at times, but it seems to fit the tone of the picture.” The Film Reel

“It’s a far cry from the slasher elements of the original three films where the puppets got pretty nasty at times with their victims. There’s little gore and the violence seems punctuated – yet again, conveniently enough, the goriest moment in the entire film comes courtesy of the stock footage of Toulon’s suicide.” Andrew Smith, Popcorn Pictures

“Being a Puppet Master movie the important acting is not done by the human cast it is the puppets which in Axis of Evil seem to steal the show (mainly because the other characters are not as likable as in the past Puppet Master installments in the series).” J.R. Watkins, Twisted Central

“The addition of a Japanese “Dragon Lady” villain […] gives this entry a slightly different flavor. It’s certainly one of the better-looking Puppet Master movies as DeCoteau achieves a decent amount of period detail on a meager budget.” Mitch Lovell, The Video Vacuum

Cast and characters:

  • Levi Fiehler as Danny Coogan
  • Jenna Gallaher as Beth
  • Taylor M. Graham as Don Coogan
  • Tom Sandoval as Ben / Max
  • Jerry Hoffman as Uncle Len
  • Erica Shaffer as Elma Coogan
  • Aaron Riber as Klaus
  • Ada Chao as Ozu
  • Gu Yingfeng as Nozoki-ya
  • Xiangfu Zhang as Buta
  • Mike Brooks as Mr. Gifford
  • William Hickey as Andre Toulon (archive footage)

Technical details:

83 minutes | 2.35: 1 | Dolby Digital

Trivia:

Although the film is set in 1939, the USA did not enter WWII until December 7, 1941, after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbour.

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