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Thursday, October 24, 2019

Review: Devil’s Junction: Handy Dandy’s Revenge

Director: Jeff Broadstreet
Screenplay: Donald Borza II and J. S. Brinkley
Year: 2019

“Devil’s Junction: Handy Dandy’s Revenge”, another movie released this year that joins the extensive and tiresome list of movies about killer toys. As a reminder, this year this page has reviewed “Child’s Play (2019)”, “Annabelle Comes Home”, “Doll Cemetery”, “The Banana Splits Movie” and even in a segment of “Holiday Hell” these characters appear. Some of these movies are effective in scaring the viewer, as with “Annabelle Comes Home” and to a certain extent “Child’s Play (2019)”, but truth be told, most of us are not scared by a toy Buzz Lightyear kicking us to infinity and beyond.

In “Devil’s Junction: Handy Dandy’s Revenge”, Steffan’s father acquires an old building that his son wants to turn into a nightclub. Steffan takes his friends to see the place and convince them to be a part of his project, but the building was not abandoned as they thought. Some puppets and their master start attacking them, who were part of a TV program that used to be recorded in this place.

Let’s start with the detail that the director of this movie, Jeff Broadstreet (“Night of the Living Dead 3D”), tries to hide his identity under the pseudonym Roy G. Biv. Knowing that Broadstreet’s career as a director has not been very interesting worsens the fact that he tried to dissociate his name from this movie. Really, he has reasons to try and erase this movie from his list of accomplishments. 

The screenplay from Donald Borza II and J. S. Brinkley shows their inexperience in this moviemaking facet. It lacks being more interesting in its plot and characters, neither of which are well developed, and not even the presence of horror legend Bill Moseley (“The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2”, “The Church”, “Shed of the Dead”) and Bill Oberst Jr. (“3 From Hell”), both with countless credits as actors, are not enough to save it. Their acting is overshadowed by weak dialogues that do not generate any interest.

The visual section is better worked, particularly the gory scenes, with descent practical effects eclipsed by shameful digital effects. Especially the scenes from the final stretch has some digital effects that end up being unintentionally funny, ruining any atmosphere it had managed to create until that point. The background music tries to help with this but, although it is good, it ends up being distracting and playing against it.

“Devil’s Junction: Handy Dandy’s Revenge” as a movie is as absurd as its premise. It gets into a subgenre that has become competitive by the congestion of recently released titles and shows that killer toys are not always effective and even less when they come accompanied by one-liners about puppets and hands in asses that are not even funny. It ends up being a movie that lacks the potential to create fear or interest and is a weak story with too many plot holes and topics that are brought up but not developed.

Midnight Releasing will make “Devil’s Junction: Handy Dandy’s Revenge” available in digital platforms and DVD on November 5, 2019.

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