Puppet Master (film): Wikis


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Puppet Master

Film poster
Directed by David Schmoeller
Produced by Hope Perello
Charles Band
Written by Charles Band
Kenneth J. Hall
Starring Paul Le Mat
William Hickey
Irene Miracle
Jimmie F. Skaggs
Robin Frates
Matt Roe
Kathryn O'Reilly
Mews Small
Music by Richard Band
Cinematography Sergio Salvati
Editing by Thomas Meshelski
Distributed by Full Moon Productions
Release date(s) October 12, 1989
Running time 90 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Followed by Puppet Master II (1991)

Puppet Master (also known as Puppetmaster and Puppet Master I) is a 1989 horror film written by Charles Band and Kenneth J. Hall, and directed by David Schmoeller. It is the first film in the Puppet Master franchise and stars Paul Le Mat, Irene Miracle, Matt Roe and Kathryn O'Reilly as psychics who are plotted against by a former colleague, using puppets animated by an Egyptian spell. The film's cult status has led to the production of nine sequels. Originally intended for theatrical release in summer 1989, before being released on home video the following September, Puppet Master was ultimately pushed to a direct-to-video release on October 12, 1989, as Charles Band felt he was likely to make more money this way than he would in the theatrical market.



The film starts in 1939 Bodega Bay, California with an old puppeteer named Andre Toulon putting the finishing touches on a living puppet called Jester. A living oriental puppet stares out of the window at Blade, another living puppet, as Blade scouts the grounds of the Bodega Bay Inn that Andre is staying at. Two Nazis get out of a car and head for Toulon's room but Blade beats them there and Andre puts Blade, Jester and the oriental puppet into a chest, before hiding the chest in a wall panel. As the Nazis break down the door, Toulon shoots himself in the mouth with a pistol. The oriental puppet is not seen for the rest of the movie.

The film now cuts to 1989, with a psychic named Alex. Alex has a dream of a man that he recognizes putting a gun to a woman's head. Seconds later, he dreams that there are leeches on his stomach, sucking out significant amounts of blood. The film cuts to Dana, another psychic, who has visions of being slashed across the throat with a knife. Carissa and Frank, two other psychics who are apparently lovers, are reading the mind of another woman when they get a call from Alex. Frank tells Alex that they also got a call from Dana, and the four psychics assess that the visions they've been having were sent from a former colleague, Neil Gallagher.

The psychics meet at the Bodega Bay Inn that Neil is staying at and meet Neil's wife, Megan, as well as the housekeeper, Theresa. The psychics are skeptical that Neil took a wife but it is forgotten when Megan tells them that Neil shot himself. Theresa, Megan, Dana, Carissa, Frank, and Alex leave the body, leaving Frank, Carissa and Dana. Dana stabs a long pin into Neil's corpse to make sure he's dead.

Settling into her room, Dana warns Theresa to stay away from the fireplace. Theresa, somewhat upset and suspicious of Dana, leaves the room. Alex, in his room, finds a picture and has a vision of a couple dancing in a ballroom, only to awaken from his vision after crumpling the picture in his hand. While in the elevator Carissa has visions of Neil violently attacking a woman in the same elevator. Theresa tells Frank and Carissa not to say things like that around Megan, as she is already upset over the loss of her husband. They assure her they won't. As the sun sets, Pinhead, another living puppet, climbs out of Neil's casket. That night at dinner, Dana makes several remarks about Neil that causes Megan to leave the table. Alex goes after her and explains about the powers of the people in the group. Carissa can touch an object and give the object's history, Dana is can tell fortunes and locate things and people, and Alex himself has premonitions in his dreams.

When night falls, Theresa goes near the fireplace and is murdered when Pinhead hits her with a poker. The psychics hear a scream and find Megan passed out nearby Neil's body that has been moved into a chair by someone. Carissa and Frank spend some intimate time together in one of the hotel rooms but two more living puppets, Tunneler and Leech Woman, enter. Tunneler kills Carissa by drilling into her face and Leech Woman vomits leeches onto Frank's body, which drain his blood. Meanwhile, Dana sits around with her strange, dead and preserved dog until she has her leg broken by Pinhead. Pinhead chases her and repeatedly strangles and punches her until she manages to knock him away, only to have her throat slashed by Blade, using his knife-hand.

Alex has recurring nightmares of Megan having a gun put to her head by Neil and the other psychics being found dead, but is eventually awoken by Megan who takes him into the room that Andre Toulon was in, and tells him that Neil found Andre's secret to bringing inanimate objects, such as puppets, to life. Alex has a vision and they go downstairs to find the dead bodies of the psychics sitting around a table. They are stopped by the newly resurrected Neil. He explains that "metaphysically speaking", he did commit suicide, but he used Toulon's formula to give himself eternal life. He fights with Alex and beats him up, then Neil hurts Jester and the puppets revolt against him. They lock him in an elevator and murder him by having Pinhead hold Neil's head as Tunneler drill into his neck, Blade cut off his fingers, and finally Leech Woman vomits a leech into his mouth killing him.

The film cuts to Alex saying goodbye to Megan and leaving the hotel. Now alone, Megan picks up Dana's taxidermic dog, and by the following scene, the dog becomes completely animate walking up the stairs with Megan, indicating that she too has learned Toulon's method (although the film's sequel dispels that she has become the next Puppet Master).


  • Paul Le Mat – Alex Whitaker
  • William Hickey – Andre Toulon
  • Irene Miracle – Dana Hadley
  • Jimmie F. Skaggs – Neil Gallagher
  • Robin Frates – Megan Gallagher
  • Matt Roe – Frank Forrester
  • Kathryn O'Reilly – Carissa Stamford
  • Mews Small – Theresa
  • Barbara Crampton – Woman at Carnival
  • David Boyd – Man at Carnival
  • Peter Frankland – Assassin #1
  • Andrew Kimbrough – Assassin #2

Home Video

Puppet Master has been reissued several times. It is available in a box set featuring the first seven installments of the series, an 18-disc Full Moon Features collection and a Spanish-subtitled import collection of the first three Puppet Master films. In 2007, Razor Digital released an uncut DualDisc version of Puppet Master, featuring both the standard and stereoscopic versions of the film. The uncut version restores a number of deleted scenes, including additional footage of Frank and Carissa having sex, extra frames added to Dana's death which make the slash across her throat more visible, and Neil's death scene being extended to contain more gore. In December 2008, Band authorized Puppet Master for digital download through the iTunes Store; his first foray into the digital market.

20th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray

On June 15, 2010, Full Moon is re-releasing Puppet Master in a collector's edition 2-disc set with its eighth sequel (Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys is not from Full Moon Features and is not considered part of the series), Puppet Master: Axis of Evil. The set is to include packaging resembling Toulon's trunk, a poster for "Axis of Evil," mini-poster cards for all of the films in the series, and stickers featuring each puppet. The set is available in DVD and Blu-ray, marking Full Moon's first foray into the Blu-ray market, including both their first film (Puppet Master) and their latest film (Axis of Evil, at the time).[1]


In March 2009, it was reported that Band is interested in remaking 1989's Puppet Master in 3-D.[2] Similarly, the original film was reissued by Razor Digital in 2007 in DualDisc format, featuring both standard and stereoscopic versions.

As of December 20, 2009, nothing else has been announced.


External links

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