And the killer dolls keep coming. I just reviewed An Evil Tale, a killer doll film with a Scottish curse. Now I’ve got Evil Little Things, a killer doll film with two stories, one of which involves an Irish curse involving a leprechaun doll. Are its charms lucky enough to summon up a good movie? Or is has director Matt Green (Vicious, No Sin Unpunished) given us a pot of fool’s gold?
Jason (Mason Wells) thinks there’s a monster under his bed. His stepfather (Zach Galligan, Gremlins, Waxworks) thinks his mother (L.A. Winters) is too soft on him and deals with it. The next day Mom takes him to a toy shop where The Dollmaker (Geoff McKnight, Sick People) tells him stories about two of the dolls he’s working on.
In “Blood For Gold” Jessica (Hannah Fierman, St. Agatha, Dead By Midnight (11 PM Central)) has moved her family back to her hometown and into her grandmother’s old house. Her kids’ classmates are creeping them out with stories about murders in the house. And it seems, as much as she wants to deny it, as kids she and her friend Susan (Courtney Hogan) had a run-in with a leprechaun. So when a leprechaun doll appears on the porch and she finds a trap door in the fireplace with “Blood For Gold” etched into it you think she would run like hell. Of course, she doesn’t.
Evil Little Things first segment has few creepy moments. But the lack of any effects, doll-related or otherwise until the last few minutes drags it down. The utterly predictable ending doesn’t help either.
“Be Careful What You Wish For” revolves around a woman named Abby (Courtney Lakin, Shadow Work). She has scars, mental and physical, from a house fire. The physical ones are minor but she believes they make her ugly. She lives alone with her dolls and believes one, in particular, Patty, speaks to her. Abby meets unexpectedly meets her ex Jeremy (Jonathan Horne) and they reconnect in a big way Patty begins to get very, very jealous.
This segment should have been dark and creepy but it comes off like one of Charles Band’s Demonic Toys films. The sight of Patty sacrificing another doll to Satan is funny, not scary.
The wraparound ends Evil Little Things by delivering the expected payback to the Evil Stepfather.
Evil Little Things was directed by the same guy who made the infamously bad Tom Savini film Vicious. Thankfully he’s gotten somewhat better over the years, but this still isn’t a particularly good film. The script by Yasmin Bakhtiari and Nancy Knight has some good ideas but can’t capitalize on them.
There’s also the common problem with films like Evil Little Things, not being able to afford a lot of effects shots. And non-moving dolls aren’t particularly scary. Most of the effects we do get are good. The one that doesn’t, however, is really bad and another moment that should have been frightening rendered laughable instead.
Those really into killer dolls may still enjoy Evil Little Things. Others would be better off skipping it and watching Jack in the Box instead.
Uncork’d Entertainment will release Evil Little Things on DVD and Digital on May 12th. You can check the film’s Facebook page for more info,