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Double Feature Horor Movie Reviews: Rawhead Rex (1986) and Puppet Master (1989)

We recently made a pact to get together for a sleepover this Fall, bake some autumn-themed baked goods, and watch horror movies, so recently we did just that! We made a cinnamon apple cake, served hot from the oven with vanilla bean ice cream on top, and visited our favorite decade in horror–the 80’s! We also played several rounds of a very fun horror trivia game.

First Movie Review: Rawhead Rex


Described as a “1986 Irish Fantasy Slasher Film”, and written by Clive Barker, this one has been on my To-Watch list for quite some time, so when Scream and I saw it available to watch on Shudder, we gave it a go! Barker wrote both the screenplay for this film, as well as the short story by the same name, originally published in the third volume of his Books of Blood series. Some of you might recognize the name Rawhead Rex as one of the many monikers of the legendary bogeyman, also known as Rawhead-and-Bloody-Bones, Tommy Rawhead, or Old Bloody Bones, to name a few. He was a monstrous creature of legend that was used to terrify kids and to keep them in line, like many fairytales of old.


The film follows the story of a historian who travels to Ireland to research certain religious relics. Meanwhile, an old stone column is struck by lightning, thus resurrecting the monster buried beneath it known as Rawhead Rex.
It doesn’t take long for Rawhead Rex to begin his bloody rampage through the Irish countryside.


Barker himself has been quoted as having mixed feelings about the film, saying, “I think, generally speaking, the movie followed the beats of the screenplay. It’s just that monster movies, by and large, are made by directorial ‘oomph’ rather than what’s in the screenplay. I’d like to think the screenplay for Rawhead Rex had the possibility of having major thrills in it. I don’t think it was quite pulled off.” Back in 2004, he said in an interview that he would like to do a remake of the film, but as of now, there has yet to be any news of it. I, personally, would love to see a remake of this film (hopefully with practical effects as well!)


Q: What did you think of the movie?
SCREAM: It was absolutely ridiculous and I loved watching it with friends to laugh at it with. If I had watched it by myself, it would not have been half as fun.

SUGAR: I agree 100%, it was so fun watching it with friends, but I don’t know if I’d have finished watching it by myself.


Q: Did you like the overall look of Rawhead Rex? What were your thoughts on the special effects used throughout the film?
SCREAM: To be honest, he looks pretty cheap BUT it’s practical effects so they get SO many points for trying. The CGI was something special, something straight out of the 80s.

SUGAR: Haha yeahhh, they kind of fall into that “so bad they’re comically good” category for me. 

Q: Based off what you saw from the movie, would you read Clive Barker’s short story of the same name?
SCREAM: Yes, because I need a more coherent back story to this creature. The movie barely explained anything.

SUGAR: Absolutely! I’m always down to read something by Clive Barker. I’m sure it is much creepier than this movie was.

Second Movie Review: Puppet Master


Puppet Master is a horror classic, but also one that I (Sugar) had somehow never seen before. Needless to say, Scream and her Husband decided we needed to fix that.


After the sudden and mysterious suicide of one of their collegues, a group of psychics are called to pay their respects at the Bodega Bay Inn, but it doesn’t take long before the puppets come out to play and bodies start piling up as the survivors seek to find out just what is truly going on.


Q: Overall opinion of the movie?
SCREAM: I love it! Creepy toys are something I connect with. Probably because I always thought my toys were alive when I was little.

SUGAR: It was great, and I’m so mad at myself for not having watched it sooner in my life. Would definitely re-watch, and will be checking out the many sequels in the future.

Q: Which puppets stood out to you? Did you have any favorites?
SCREAM: Tunneler, he’s also my favorite I think. It’s just such a horrible way to die and he has no mercy.

SUGAR: Yeah, he was definitely the scariest and most lethal of the puppets. The puppets I got the biggest kick out of were the Leech Woman and Pinhead.

Q: Do you think you could survive a night trapped in an inn with murderous puppets? What would be your weapon of choice to survive the night?
SCREAM: Yes, I do. They weren’t overly smart, the humans were just weak and stupid. I’d bring a sledge hammer to a leech fight.

SUGAR: Haha I love it. I mean, I would certainly hope I’d survive the night. lol I think my weapon of choice would be just letting Scream go to town on her puppet massacre with that sledgehammer. Backup plan being a wood chipper.

We hope you guys enjoyed our horror movie double-feature review. If you’ve seen either (or both) of these movies, we’d love to know what you thought of them! Also, have you watched any especially good (or especially bad) horror movies lately? We wanna hear about those too! 😀

Published by sugarandscream

Welcome to our little blog of horrors, Sugar & Scream! If you're looking for a monstrously good time, rest assured, you've come to the right place. We're two best friends with a sisterhood forged in the Unholy Trinity that is Horror, Fantasy and Science Fiction. When we're not busy devouring books, we're cooking up sinisterly scrumptious baked goods and other delights (and sometimes horrors) in our kitchens. Expect the unexpected, because we like to shake things up. Our blog is its own Frankenstein's Monster of our hobbies and passions all stitched together into one glorious abomination that encompasses everything from what we're reading and watching, to the hobbies we're working on, to our adventures in baking and plenty more!

9 thoughts on “Double Feature Horor Movie Reviews: Rawhead Rex (1986) and Puppet Master (1989)

  1. Aww man ditto to this – Creepy toys are something I connect with. Probably because I always thought my toys were alive when I was little. Puppet Master is great but I haven’t seen it for a few years. Rawhead Rex isn’t on the Australian shudder but it sounds like I’m not missing much anyway. I’m working my way through the Halloween movies. I’ll be watching number 3 tonight. Apparently the new “Halloween Kills” is meant to be pretty awesome but it’s on a streaming service I don’t have. Bloody annoying haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I highly recommend a Puppet Master rewatch. I’ve been working my way through the Friday the 13th movies. Maybe next year, I will do the same with Halloween. Sugar watched Halloween Kills and she was NOT impressed so you may not be missing much there. -Scream

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I loved Demonic Toys and Dolls. Both were great toy movies! As for campy horror? Ooof, Nick and I watched Thirst on Shudder recently. It’s about a gay vampire, and, well, there are a lot of dongs in this movie in a way that makes you kinda shout a bit.

    I did see a really scary movie that does not have torture in it. The Dark and The Wicked is on Shudder, and holy crap, I was scared for sure. I think a big part of it is that you KNOW these characters in real life. There’s no boucy-boobed co-ed and dippy jock. And the villain is creepy, too. I definitely shouted for a while at that one and then grabbed a blankey for safety.


    1. Blankeys are required safety tools for horror. I will have to look that movie up! I don’t know the last time a horror movie actually scared me. Hereditary creeped me out and Get Out was surprisingly good. Sometimes a good jump scare will get me. I still need to watch Demonic Toys. I very much enjoyed Dolls. Oh my gosh, gay vampire? I can only imagine the level of dongs that movie required lol. -Scream


      1. Hereditary made me more uncomfortable, especially in places where I wasn’t totally sure what was going on. Get Out fit into the same category of uncomfortable. I think The Dark and The Wicked almost felt too real, in a good way! I’ve been thinking about it a lot this week and want to rewatch it soon.

        Liked by 1 person

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