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Dolls (1987 film): Wikis


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Theatrical release poster
Directed by Stuart Gordon
Produced by Charles Band,
Brian Yuzna
Written by Ed Naha
Starring Stephen Lee
Guy Rolfe
Hilary Mason
Ian Patrick Williams
Carolyn Purdy Gordon
Cassie Stuart
Bunty Bailey
introducing Carrie Lorraine
Music by Fuzzbee Morse,
Victor Spiegel
Cinematography Mac Ahlberg
Editing by Lee Percy
Distributed by Empire Pictures
Release date(s) 1987
Running time 77 min
Country  United States
Language English

Dolls is a film directed by horror director Stuart Gordon and released in 1987, after Gordon's success with Re-Animator. The film was shot in Italy in 1985. Dolls has taken credit for having inspired several similar "killer doll" movies since, most prominently Child's Play.


Plot summary

The plot centers around a group of unlucky people, who are stranded in the middle of nowhere during a violent thunderstorm. Judy is a young girl who is traveling by car with her snooty, abusive parents: her thuggish father and her wealthy, unloving stepmother. Also there is a kindly, mild-mannered, naive businessman named Ralph, who picks up two female punk rock hitchhikers. All six potential victims wind up at a huge mansion inhabited by Gabriel and Hilary Hartwicke, a couple of disturbingly charming, elderly people who appear to be toymakers. Indeed, their house literally abounds with dolls, puppets, and other beautifully detailed toys.

One by one, some of the overnight guests are attacked by many dolls who turn out to be cursed, immoral people that have been killed and imprisoned in toys to pay for their crimes by the owners of the house, who are actually witches. Judy's father and stepmother end up being killed by the dolls for their lack of love towards their daughter, while the two female punks are also punished for trying to steal antiques from the house. However, since the dolls like those who are pure at heart (like Judy) or young at heart (like Ralph), they are spared, although Ralph was almost also killed by the dolls for trying to brutishly proved the dolls aren't alive.

The movie ends with Ralph and Judy leaving the house together after being bid farewell by Gabriel and Hilary, who even invite them to come back whenever they want, knowing they show respect to the childhood world and its mysteries. As they both drive away from the mansion, another car with another family with a set of unruly parents suddenly arrives and breaks down, seemingly stuck in the mud, yards from it.


  • Ian Patrick Williams - David Bower
  • Carolyn Purdy Gordon - Rosemary Bower
  • Carrie Lorraine - Judy Bower
  • Guy Rolfe - Gabriel Hartwicke
  • Hilary Mason - Hilary Hartwicke
  • Bunty Bailey - Isabel
  • Cassie Stuart - Enid
  • Stephen Lee - Ralph Morris


  • Stuart Gordon was, at one point, very interested in directing a sequel to this film. The initial storyline would have followed Judy and Ralph back to Boston in which Ralph would have indeed married Judy's mother and they would all become a family. Until, one day Judy would receive a box sent from England which would contain the toy makers, Gabriel and Hilary, as dolls.


The film has a 63% and 5.5/10 at Rotten Tomatoes, it had an average 2/5 at Allmovie, an average of 6.2/10 at the IMDb.

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