Saturday, June 09, 2007

Donnie Don and the Groovy Group

What would you do if a puppet suddenly showed up on your doorstep? In a box? Wrapped in plain brown paper? With your NAME on it? With no return address? Personally, if a large packet shows up on my doorstep with no known sender and no one around to even drop it off, I'd call the FBI and let THEM deal with it. Because, according to the FBI, it could be a bomb. And dammit, I'm NOT opening a bomb in this apartment. Not after what happened last time. And you know what? If the FBI opens this strange package and there's no bomb and instead there's a goddamn PUPPET? They can fucking KEEP it. Because you know what, I want nothing to do with it.

The thing about puppets is that, ultimately, someone somewhere is controlling it. And there's only one reasonable thing that I could do with it. Bury it. Under the dirt. Under concrete. Under a house. Under a pilot and co pilot. Underneath a fucking plane. And then, just to be safe. I'd do it in Chernobyl. Fuck that puppet dude. Do you know what happens if you don't dispose of it properly? It kills your family. That's what happens! And do you want that on your conscience? No. I didn't fucking think so. You love your family. And the last thing you want is some goddamn evil puppet mutilating them.

Naturally, it's because Jaime Ashen DOESN'T do these things that his wife ends up dead and he's the prime suspect in her murder. He's being investigated by constant shaver and terrible cop Donnie Don Wahlberg. I'm not kidding about the constant shaving thing either, every scene he's in he is shaving. With an electric razor. I have no idea why. Just, always shaving. Yet, somehow, he never manages to get rid of the caterpillar under his nose. It's crazy.

Following his wife's death, Jaime heads home. First though, he returns to his apartment (aka the scene of the crime) and takes the puppet. He's greeted, in a very friendly way, by his new stepmother, whom he's never met, and his, apparently, paraplegic father. He had a stroke a year ago and is now confined to a wheel chair. Jaime doesn't care about any of this, though. He's trying to remember a local nursery rhyme.

Beware the stare of Mary Shaw; she had no children, only dolls. And if you see her, do not scream, or she'll rip your tongue out at the seam.
All we had was Goofy Granma, and I don't even remember what her deal was anymore. Just that she was weird to some of the kids at my school. This Mary Shaw though, sounds like a rough old broad. Apparently, when she died she was buried with all 101 of her puppets. And, in fact, was made to LOOK like one for her funeral.

And, of course, she didn't die of old age. No, that's never how it happens. You see, some kid mocked her during a performance and then the kid went missing. The kid's family suspected Mary Shaw and killed her. And now, she's taking her revenge.

"Missing? That's a funny last name."

It wouldn't be much of a movie if it wasn't Jaime's family, so lets go ahead and assume that it is. It's Jaime's dad that tells him the story of what happened. About Mary going after the family from beyond the grave and how he sent Jaime away to try to protect him. He wasn't such a bad father, he was only trying to help!

Meanwhile, Donnie Don is tearing apart a cemetery in order to exhume Mary Shaw and the puppets (without a warrant or court order) to no avail. He naturally suspects Jaime did something and, conveniently, arrives at Jaime's dad's house to arrest him. Jaime, however, gets a phone call asking him to come to the theater where his innocence can be proven. Donnie Don is done with the nonsense and says that Jaime has to go to jail. Jaime points over Donnie Don's shoulder and says "what the heck is that" and escapes, once again eluding capture. Donnie Don gives chase and they end up at the theater for the final showdown with Mary Shaw and her creepy wall of puppets.

The movie doesn't get too into Shaw's origin which helps and hurts the movie in some ways. While the mystery is kind of fun, it would have been nice to see a bit more of how she got to her end. And, while the story has a nice twist, it's somewhat obvious. Not entirely. It's obvious like saying that there's a car on the freeway. Of course there is. Duh. But it doesn't specify what KIND of car. So, while it's SOMEWHAT obvious, it's not entirely. Is that vague and confusing enough? Let me know, I can make it worse for you. I'm good at that.

Dead Silence was an average movie. It was a neat premise and had a good look to it, but the characters were underdeveloped. Why Was Donnie Don's Dt Lipton shaving all the goddamn time? Why was he such an ineffective cop? Why was he SO doubting of Jaime's "ghost story" yet still willing to dig up the graveyard without a warrant? Why does there HAVE to be a twist at the end? Why wasn't Jaime more concerned about a random puppet showing up on his doorstep? 6 and a half tongues ripped out at their seams out of 10.