Amateur schlock is almost always better than studio schlock so, as bad as 1991's Voodoo Dolls is, it still has its redeeming qualities.
Virtuous young Vanessa (Grace Phillips) is the pretty new student at an all girl’s college. Of course, her roommate ends up being the official school slut, Laura (Maria Stanton).
She’s hot most of all for Mr. Hanley (Howard Balaban) who, to be fair, is one steaming slab of Canadian cheese.
It is a Canadian film, which means the Voodoo priest, when he shows up, pronounces “about” the Canadian way, which I really shouldn’t find funny, I guess, but I do.
Otherwise actor Graham Chambers performs in a monotone. I’m not sure if it’s meant to be a sign he’s possessed or if it’s just the minimum effort the actor’s willing to put in for this stereotype part.
There are a few other stock subplots and characters shoved uncomfortably into the film. There’s also a young lesbian attracted to Laura and the latter cruelly rebuffs her, resulting in the typical tragic subplot. This is observed by a groundskeeper straight out of Porky’s who looks through a peephole to the girl’s locker room while drinking whiskey.
His death is one of the film’s more memorable moments as he’s cornered by a gang of Voodoo dolls in a maintenance room.
They look like they’ve just been propped on the pipes by a kid. In closeup, an off-screen hand moves them around like a Punch and Judy show but with less articulation.
For all this, the movie has some decent atmosphere at times and you can sense the filmmaker’s enthusiasm at having the chance to make a real, honest to goodness, movie. There is a kind of cheap richness about some of the standard gothic melodrama shots.
Voodoo Dolls is available on Amazon Prime.
Twitter Sonnet #1400
The biggest mask could cover twenty men.
The question mouth emits a rising tone.
An extra count includes a diff’rent ten.
The movies showed across a faded bone.
The certain brain embraced the floating lime.
Connected ropes became a net for life.
A web was feeble, pushing heavy time.
His legs were like the walker’s wife.
With muffled sound the song was sort of played.
The choppy light was blue at first, then red.
With ruffled sheets the bed was partly made.
The sappy fight was cruel at first, then dead.
The blinking eyes betrayed the sleepy pose.
The pencil eagle flexed his yellow toes.