The Battle Is Over. The War Has Just Begun!

Axis Rising Puppet Master
2012 | Color | 1 Hr 26 Min | Horror | R | Full Moon

Charles Band

Charles Band 
Shane Bitterling

Kip Canyon
Jean Louise O'Sullivan
Oto Brezina
Brad Potts

After foiling a plot to blow up an American arms plant, Danny Coogan and his girlfriend, Beth, quickly find that their troubles have just begun. One of Toulon's mysterious Puppets has been kidnapped by the Nazis, and under the wicked, watchful eye of the occultist Commandant Moebius, the Puppets' life-giving serum is synthesized to create a master race of unstoppable soldiers. Moebius plots to assassinate the highly-decorated General Porter to deliver a crippling blow to the American war effort, but his experiments are not ready. A Nazi Scientist uses the serum to create their own superior race of Nazi Puppets in the form of Blitzkrieg, Wehrmacht, Bombshell and Kamikaze! Danny and Beth teamed with craggy Sergeant Stone and Toulon's Puppets, are no match for Moebius and his war machine. It is up to Blade, Pinhead, Leech Woman and Jester to revive their own secret weapon to stop the Axis Rising!

Well, I did it I finally watched all 10 Puppet Master Movies to date. Well, except the one that Charles Band does not call a puppet master movie that being Puppet Master vs Dominic Toys that played on the Sci-Fi Channel a few years back. In fact, it is very hard to find a copy and someday if I run across one I will snag it. So how did the last one fair well read on my fellow puppeteers read on?

Well Duh!
So let us get the first big glaring fact out of the way shall we? We get a new Beth played by Jean Louise O'Sullivan (Alpha House, Sorority Slaughterhouse)  and Danny played by Kip Canyon who oddly enough as done a few other movies for the director of the last Puppet Master David DeCoteau. Both of them come off kind of odd at first it took me a good 20 to 30 minutes to warm up to them. In fact, I was really not liking O'Sullivan but by the end of the movie she was a new person internally and I will admit got much better looking as the movie went on. The biggest surprise of the movie and one of the biggest reasons to watch PM X would have to be Brad Potts (Zombies vs Strippers, Water For Elephants). Pott's play's Sgt. Stone who has to babysit Beth and Danny let alone deal with moving Puppets. The dialog was written for Sgt. Stone is some of the best I have heard from the Full Moon camp in a long time.

One of the best up -grades would have to be Tom Devlin's 1313 FX shop wrangling the puppets this time around. I have been a huge fan of Devlin's work ever since that first year of Face Off. The work of his team really paid off giving the puppets a much better look and feel. Danny Draven edited this flick and his person touch helps the pace along as well. The sets are minimal as always but used very well in this movie. I did find it odd that in this movie Danny lives in a 2 story house, but in movie prior (which is set only a day before) he lives in a 1 floor apartment above a Chinese restaurant. The soundtrack is the same old thing so nothing really new. I was disappointed that for the Blu-ray release we would get more out of the back speakers this really was more of a Dolby digital movie in the front with nothing coming from the rear. 

As for the Blu-ray, the movie looks fantastic very bright when it needs to be and the dark's are spot on. Very crisp and the puppets finally look great the last time they looked this good was puppet master 3. And believe it or not, this was the first time creator Charles Band directed a Puppet Master movie which is the company's flagship. With all the team players he has behind him the experience for Axis Raising is rather enjoyable. It has me excited about Puppet Master: Axis Termination early next year. 

It is also worth mentioning that this is the first full moon film to have brought back the behind the scenes video zone in 10 years. And Band gives you a nice intro about the Video Zones from the VHS glory days.  Even tho this one looks good and we get new puppets I have to say that Axis Evil looked better and had a better plot but this is my favorite so far of the trilogies as long as the next one does not bomb. 

So after ten movies do I love them or hate them I would have to say I defiantly appreciate them! The middle of the road lost a lot of love for me but if you book end the first 3 with the last 2 and sprinkle in parts 4 and 5 it is not bad and it is fun to watch. I do give Axis Rising a solid...

3 bloody brains out of 5
Also, be on the lookout next year for the reboot of the first Puppet Master.


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