We gave it a C
Exploiting the eerie quasi-life and vague grotesqueness of marionettes, Puppet Master II is surprisingly interesting. In this nightmare on video, a team of parapsychologists is sent to investigate the mysterious murders at the Bodega Bay Inn. But these ‘busters have more to worry about than getting slimed — their opponents (Blade, Torch, Ms. Leech, Pin Head, Tunneler, and Jester) are killer puppets who live up to their bad names.
Directed by David Allen, who also created the impressive special effects, Puppet Master II is much better than its predecessor — despite the absence of William Hickey, who made such a haunting evil puppeteer in the original movie. (This time, a stand-in for Hickey stays hidden behind a shroud through the entire film.) While Puppet Master was merely an excuse for showing lots of disgusting ways to die, the sequel at least has a sense of humor. The video also features a puffy but frequently intriguing look at the making of Puppet Master II, revealing clever camera tricks and introducing the movie puppets’ real masters.