Puppet Master: Axis of Evil (2010)

puppet master axis of evil poster 2010 movie
2.5 Overall Score
Story: 3/10
Acting: 2/10
Visuals: 2/10

Better than the previous entry

Horrible acting, boring sets, so-so story

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Puppet Master:  Axis of Evil

Studio: Full Moon Features

Genre(s): Horror/B-Movie

Release Date(s): July 27, 2010

MPAA Rating: Not Rated

puppet master axis of evil levi fiehler

I believe in America and puppets!

Danny Coogan (Levi Fiehler) dreams of helping support the war effort but finds himself ineligible due to an injured leg.  When he befriends André Toulon (William Hickey), Toulon is killed, and Danny discovers the living puppets that the Nazis were willing to kill for.  Danny learns that the Nazis responsible for attack on Toulon have teamed with a Japanese agent in a plan to sabotage America’s war secret weapon.  Danny and the puppets could be the only thing standing between the Axis and the protection of the United States.

Directed by David DeCoteau, Puppet Master:  Axis of Evil is a straight-to-DVD low-budget horror film.  The movie follows the stand-alone SyFy TV movie Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys in 2004 and Puppet Master:  The Legacy in 2003.  It was met with negative reviews.

The first five movies of the Puppet Master series were movies I rented in college and were a great way to pass a weekend afternoon.  I loved the cheesiness of Full Moon movies, but had largely outgrown them.  Going back to watch a few of the later Puppet Master films, watching the movies becomes a struggle.

puppet master axis of evil puppets

Oh yeah…we’re in wide screen now!

The previous entry in the film was a clip movie with a little plot (Puppet Master vs. Demonic Toys is just a side movie).  Puppet Master:  Axis of Evil returns to the storyline and follows the events within the original Puppet Master (and reuses Puppet Master material).  The film’s story is meant to be part of a new trilogy and therefor ends in a bit of a cliffhanger…but the story isn’t very compelling.

The movie is acted poorly.  The dialogue is a bad mix of colloquial “1940s” dialogue, and it isn’t delivered well by the characters.  The “good characters” played by Levi Fiehler, Jenna Gallaher, Erica Shaffer, and Taylor M. Graham all speak like they can’t wait to go to get a soda at the Pop’s shop and that they are all in a bad sitcom.  The “villains” played by Tom Sandoval and Ada Chao are stereotypical Axis characters.  No one is any better than a cardboard stock cutout.  It is also a bit weird to mix in William Hickey as the Puppet Master since he had been dead over ten years and Guy Rolfe (who was also dead) had played the character more.

puppet master axis of evil ninja

Wait. Aren’t all the puppets essentially ninjas since they are little quick?

The puppets also were altered.  The original puppets were retired with Puppet Master:  The Legacy, and these puppets are close but not quite the same.  This is evident in scenes with Blade when they try to mix the first movie with the new movie.  Also for a movie about cool looking killer puppets, it doesn’t feel like the puppets really do enough.  Instead you get this weird melodrama with Danny that dominates the plot.

Puppet Master:  Axis of Evil is better than the previous entry, but that doesn’t say much.  The Puppet Master series has lacked any steam for a long time and probably peaked (if you can say the average series ever really peaked) with Puppet Master III.  The movie’s storyline is unresolved in this entry with puppets prisoners of the Japanese and Danny vowing to get them back.  Puppet Master:  Axis of Evil is followed by Puppet Master:  Axis Rising in 2012.

Related Links:

Puppet Master (1989)

Puppet Master II (1991)

Puppet Master III:  Toulon’s Revenge (1991)

Puppet Master 4 (1993)

Puppet Master 5:  The Final Chapter (1994)

Curse of the Puppet Master (1998)

Retro Puppet Master (1999)

Puppet Master:  The Legacy (2003)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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