(Ron Merk, 1974)
The main selling point of this poor excuse for a movie is Pinocchio's status as a life-sized marionette among humans; he's pretty creepy. With the puppeteer a good twenty feet's length of string away, he's also pretty haphazard, flopping around on roller skates or dancing on the table - the actors have to keep nudging him back on track. Apart from this dazzling technical innovation, the movie resembles a typically desperate local-affiliate kids' show, adorned somewhat by the colorful artifice of the studio sets and the "Hair"-ish tinge of the stiff-as-a-board musical numbers. The idiot child Pippafax does inspire unhealthy fantasies of violence, but don't worry, he disappears along with everything else to make way for two staggeringly extraneous, threadbare cartoons which someone probably found behind the radiator and which take up fully half the film's running time. I mean, there's bad and then there's bad. Pity poor Sean Sullivan and especially Nancy Belle Fuller, who in a just industry would have rode her Hard Part Begins role to an actual career instead of hopscotching from here to oblivion.