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Name That Trauma :: Reader Keanu E. on Murderous Mall Mannequins

July 27th, 2011 by aunt john · 20 Comments

I have been trying to find the title of this made-for-TV movie since forever. I watched it in the late ‘90s although it could be early ‘90s, or late ‘80s even. I asked a friend who said the people at Kindertrauma usually can find ANYTHING. However I think this one might stump you as I have asked on every horror site known to man and nobody recalls it.

It was about a department store that may have been called “Boyles” which sold clothes, beds etc… So anyway these people get trapped inside and the mannequins in the store are trying to kill them! The opening of the movie has a man in the store basement that is impaled through the chest from behind by a CHARLIE CHAPLIN-looking mannequin holding an umbrella which he then opens.

I also remember two other specific scenes. At one point, a girl is tied to a pillar and has a very short amount of time to escape before a mannequin squirts acid onto her face from a crystalline decanter. There’s also a part where the people who are trapped have to jump across a row of double beds because the floor is electrified. There may also have been a back story about the store’s previous owner having a fat son who was bullied.

I can remember a lot of it so vividly but only one person on the entire Internet has described something vaguely similar and he never found out what it was either.

Can you help? This movie freaked the hell out of me.


Keanu E.

UNK SEZ:: Thanks for the challenging “Name That Trauma” Keanu! I foolishly thought that we had covered every possible mannequin trauma on these pages but this one sounds different! I did notice other folks wondering about this same flick online so I hope one of our readers can help! The mall setting means we can rule out previous mannequin traumas TOURIST TRAP & the short LIVING DOLLS! I hope we can find this one, it sounds cool!

Tags: Name That Trauma!

20 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Joanna BoeseNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Call me crazy, but I had read a book from the late ’70s early ’80s that had ALMOST this same premise about two kids who run away to live in the mall, and realize the mannequins come to life and they’re plotting revenge. I can’t remember much, but it wouldn’t really have any scenes like that. (It was intended for middle schoolers…) I can’t remember the title, though…

  • 2 TaylorNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 10:32 am

    (just kidding)

  • 3 TristanNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Sounds really familiar!!! The mannequins and beds remind me of ‘Hide & Go Shriek’ (1988) which I haven’t seen for years but I don’t think its the one!!! Grrr, I’m racking my brain!!!!

  • 4 cmcmcmcmNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 10:49 am

    GTFOOH Taylor – you just made me laugh!

    For some reason that opening the umbrella part sounds really familiar but I can’t think of what it’s from.

  • 5 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I spent all night searching for this one!

    I thought it sounded like Hide & Shriek too but the kills don’t match up.

    And i guess we can rule out the Twilight Zone “after hours” segments too…

  • 6 kittinNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 11:42 am

    @Joanna I read that book too. I think it has to be the same one!

  • 7 PropagatrixNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    The book is Richard Peck’s SECRETS OF THE SHOPPING MALL, I think.

  • 8 Joanna BoeseNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 1:27 pm


  • 9 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    I love that book cover! And it’s by the author of “Are You in the house alone?” and “Child of Glass”!

  • 10 Nathan ArmsNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Reminds of a combination of:

    The Initiation (1984)
    Tourist Trap (1979) as previously mentioned
    and Fade to Black (1980)

  • 11 stevil1981No Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Whatever this is it sounds amazing, I hope this one is identified, I desperately want to see it.

  • 12 Adie StoneNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    The only thing I can think of was an episode of a tv show called Randall and Hopkirk deceased, it was on the remake of the show in 2000 though

    But it has the Boyles department store, the story about the guy being bullied as a child, and the murderous mannequins lol

  • 13 Adie StoneNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    the episode was called ‘Two can play at that game’ by the way, sorry forgot to mention lol

  • 14 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Jul 27, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    That sounds very much like it Adie Stone!

  • 15 Will NepperNo Gravatar // Jul 28, 2011 at 10:44 am

    @Taylor – Lulz! That was my sister’s favorite show growing up. Almost certainly must have caused some traumatic moments for some sensitive kids.

  • 16 rifframoneNo Gravatar // Jul 28, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    I collect Alfred Hitchcock books (short story collections that he ‘compiled’ and wrote introductions for) from the 60’s and 70’s. One of them has a story in a similar vein, but the ‘mannequins’ were living people that lived in a store and pretended to be mannequins whenever they were spotted by an ‘outsider’. When their secret was discovered they attempted to kill the man who had found them as well as one of their own that had taken a liking to him. I doubt it is the same story, but are we sure the mannequins weren’t real people? That might change things up a bit…

  • 17 Adie StoneNo Gravatar // Aug 2, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Its ok, i hope it actually is what I submitted, and now I’m just waiting for my name that trauma to show up lol, might aswell help as much as I can though with others

  • 18 KeanuENo Gravatar // Aug 21, 2011 at 12:30 am

    Thanks a bundle for solving this! The way I see it, this HAS to be it. Now I just have to find it so I can relive this old trauma!

  • 19 PropagatrixNo Gravatar // Aug 22, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    Rifframone, the story you mention is John Collier’s “Evening Primrose.” (I’m a fellow Hitchcock anthology collector.)

  • 20 greneker03No Gravatar // Sep 24, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    the information you are looking for is from the “Night Stalker” series, and the episode is called “the trevi collection” where a witch summons mannequins to come to life to stop people from stealing fashion designs or get in the way of an aspiring model who happens to be a witch.

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