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A New Puppet Puzzle **

Written and Directed by Andrew M Bailey and Joshua Rasmussen

Reviewed by S. Fichten for Time In

This part-comedy, part-horror film, follows “puppet”, a rather creepy puppet doll whose behaviour is determined, as he puts it ‘from the bottom up’. That is, puppet’s behaviour is arse-determined. The comedic aspect of the film issues from the fact that puppet’s arse has a plethora of rather absurd preferences, all of which then force puppet himself to act on those preferences, via arse-determination. As puppet sadly notes, “we are all, in the end, hostage to the whims of our arses”. One thing puppet’s arse likes is to attack random, scantily dressed, young women, with knives (the women are not the ones with the knives, just to be clear). This is where the film veers from comedy to horror, as poor knife-wielding puppet runs after one teen after another. It all ends in tragedy after one somewhat better dressed (as it, she was wearing more clothes, not her clothes were a superior quality) young woman turns on puppet and uses a pair of scissors to sever puppet’s top half from his bottom half, effectively severing puppet from him own arse. This is both a calamity and a godsend. By severing puppet from him arse, he is set free from bottom-up determination, and is finally free to live his own life. Equally, by cutting puppet in two, puppet dies from severing-related injuries, so his moments of freedom are short. An interesting film, but the veer from comedy, to horror, eventually, to tragedy, makes it a bit hit and miss at times. Two stars.

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