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Rated R
Copyright 1982 Dino De Laurentiis.
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Dan Challis - Tom Atkins! An overworked hospital doctor, for some reason he just looks unhygienic.
  • Ellie Grimbridge - Younger woman out to discover what really happened to her father, she packs sexy lingerie in her overnight bag "just in case." Presumed dead.
  • Mr. Cochran - Inventor and madman intent on making a supreme sacrifice to the pagan gods. Vaporized.
  • Buddy and Betty Kupfer - Salesman and his wife, killed by poisonous snakes and crickets.
  • Buddy Jr. - If you thought salesmen were annoying, just wait till you meet their kids. Few things have the entertainment value of watching some brat's head rot and spill forth deadly slithering things.
  • Teddy - Female forensics expert with the hots for Dan, mushed by an android.
  • Henry Grimbridge - Ellie's father, killed in a most unpleasant way.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

Sequels are historically a continuation of the franchise, another way to glean some money from the pocket of the public. The general reasoning is that Joe Public thinks, "I've watched the first two and they were decent, so might as well see the third." Joe is, of course, expecting to see Mr. Myers hard at work once more.

Joe is in for a surprise, because this film has absolutely nothing to do with any of the other Halloween movies. A number of people must have popped the tape back out after watching it for thirty minutes, then checked the label before returning to the store. There they probably complained that someone else had accidentally recorded over the movie.

I don't blame them.

Dan is very interested about the events surrounding Mr. Grimbridge's death. With the assistance of the deceased's attractive daughter he travels to the factory where Silver Shamrock masks are manufactured. Thankfully we are kept abreast of the day and time by helpful captions, though the same is not true for our major characters. Twenty minutes into the film I realized that my notes contained a rough time line, but no mention of who in the heck Tom Atkins was. As in his character's name, let's not wax any more philosophical than that, okay?

Mr. Cochran is very happy, his company is prospering and sales of the three Silver Shamrock masks (pumpkin, witch, and reaper) are riding on a huge advertising wave, easily cornering the market. Swallow the idea that one in every three kids would wear the exact same mask for Halloween. Swallow! Swallow it damn you!

Everything comes with a price and these frightful visages are not excluded, though "your eternal soul" is less common than $6.99 on the tags for Halloween masks. For Cochran has stolen a stone from Stonehenge and somehow transported it to California without anyone noticing (all the inspectors were too busy checking bananas or something). Pieces of the monument have been used in creating the latex shrouds and they are inherently evil! When a certain commercial is watched the wearer is consumed from within by crickets, snakes, and all sorts of nasty things!

The cursed shrouds are dark druid stuff to say the least, but why should they require a special commercial (even one associated with Ralph Bakshi) to trigger? Notice that I did not imply the plot, just the masks. The plot needs that commercial like few other movies need plot devices, but the masks should be able to trigger based on the alignment of the planets, the moon, or something. We can be pretty certain that the druids did little in the way of market research and targeted advertising so this is plain silly.

It is interesting to note that Carpenter seems to be riding shotgun with this film, one created to advance some sort of conspiracy theory, but did a much better job of it himself with "They Live" a few years later.

Don't miss the section with Dan fighting the autonomous and detached arm of Ellie's impersonating android. Notice how he stands and holds it against his chest as the liberated limb attempts to strangle our hero. The darn thing has no leverage or hold on him, just letting go would cause it to fall harmlessly onto the ground.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Never trust the emergency brakes on a car in the junkyard.
  • Having your face broken will make you look like Jack Palance.
  • Sexual harassment laws have come a long way.
  • Being assigned to intensive care room number thirteen is bad news.
  • You can open your eyes after having gasoline poured into them. (Especially if you're an android.)
  • Molotov cocktails are not an entrepreneur's friend.
  • Old men wear out a lot sooner than young women.
  • Sneaking a twenty ton stone through customs is no problem.
  • Kidney punches are effective against androids too.
  • Night falls in Seattle, WA before New York, NY.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • Opening Credits - Moustapha! Ooooo! Say it again!
  • 3 mins - Yes, but what time is it?
  • 13 mins - This guy needs his trousers tailored. Hey Noah, when is the flood?
  • 31 mins - Um, I think that I'd sleep on the bed.
  • 35 mins - If you ever find me subsisting on spray cheese and Boone's please kill me.
  • 52 mins - Trade secrets? We're talking about latex masks, I'm pretty sure a kid could reverse engineer it.
  • 68 mins - The appearing and disappearing tag! I'm guessing it is there, just hidden by the shirt.
  • 82 mins - They are starting to skimp on the labels, only one in that stack has a clover.

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note halloweeniii1.wav Teddy: "You don't just pull someone's skull apart without a little lower arm strength. Know what I mean?"
Green Music Note halloweeniii2.wav Ellie: "What I want to know is why they put their factory out here in the middle of nowhere."
Green Music Note halloweeniii3.wav Dan: "(It's) getting late, I could use a drink!"
Green Music Note halloweeniii4.wav Mr. Cochran: "Stonehenge! We had a time getting it here; you wouldn't believe how we did it."
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 



 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Cliphalloweeniii1.mpg - 3.0m
Buddy Jr. wouldn't listen to his mom when she said TV can rot your brain. Of course that was a hyperbole and she honestly didn't think crickets and snakes would stream from her son's putrid "rotting" skull.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: [1] 2 3 ... 8
Halloween III
Reply #1. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Christian
Some parts in this movie is just plain tasteless. I felt cheated when I saw this movie because I thought Mr Myers was going to be in it. So don't buy a Halloween box set containing the three first movies. Because the third one sucks big time. Anyway, I like the locations this movie were shot. I could live there easily, but who knows? Maybe there's evil lurking?
Halloween III
Reply #2. Posted on October 30, 2000, 11:43:37 AM by Paul Westbrook
This is one Halloween movie, that does keep within the mood of Halloween, but detracts from what the audience was anticipating. People expecting to see Michael Myers were grossly disappointed to not see him here. Still, the story is interesting. Plus, I love that song.
Halloween III
Reply #3. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Chadzilla
Ah sweet days of youth.  I saw this movie during its debut weekend and will never forget my father's comment during the end credit run.  "No wonder this movie wasn't any good...Dino De Laurnetis had something to do with it."


Actually this is my favorite Halloween sequel, because it isn't a generic slasher clone and it tries to do something with the "idea" of Halloween.  Also Carpenter's score was superb.

The original script was reportedly written by the legendary Nigel Kneale, author of the classic Quatermass telefilms and their Hammer Film adaptations.  When director Tommy Lee Wallace changed the script around (making it gorier and nastier) he removed his name from the project and walked away in a huff.  Don't blame him.

A nod should also go to Dennis Etchison, who, under the pen name of Jack Martin, wrote a novelization of the movie.  He cleared up a lot of the time zone issues (the Big Giveaway is a 6PM PST and 9PM EST, etc) as well as throwing in a lot of in-jokes to his other Carpenter novelizations (Halloween 2 and The Fog).  He even makes the Dr. Challies the Dead Beat Drunken Dad Anti-Hero a tad more sympathetic. The book is actually pretty decent, even though the movie is flawed.  Still, I love it and give it three slimes.
Halloween III
Reply #4. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Ken Begg
The plan for the Halloween movies at this point was to leave Michael M. permanently deceased, having blown him up real good in the second film, and release annual unrelated films all centering on the holiday of Halloween.  H3 didn't do too well, though, probably for the obvious reason, and new producers bought the rights and reestablished Myers as the focus of the increasingly desultory series.  

As for the above comments, I especially concur that I personally found the film overly mean-spirited (but then I have a comparitively low threshold of squeamishness), and the idea that anyone would tamper with a Nigel "Quatermass" Kneale screenplay is horrific.  I'd love to see someone redo this and go with the original script.
Halloween III
Reply #5. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by PETER JOHNSON
I really can't believe all the positive commentary here.  Well, to each his own, and all that, but I thought this film blew chunks--really, really awful.  For one thing, it's shot so darkly that you have to squint (Is that a bug or part of his nose?) to see anything.  The business of the masks shooting out all sorts of different species of vermin that would co-exist only in the wrangler's bag (Quick!! Roll film! The millipedes are eating the roaches!!)left me with that cold, dull sensation behind the eyes that only the worst films can do.  ANY of the "Friday the 13th" films--horrid though they are--beat the stuffing out of this excrement.  Hated it.  One skull. NO slimes.
Halloween III
Reply #6. Posted on January 19, 2001, 08:37:01 PM by Cham
One of the top 10 worst movies ever made. Also pretty cool. When I rented this a few years back I imagined I would be watching another Michael Myers slasher flick. But I was surprised. I give it a 3/5
Halloween III
Reply #7. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Macabre Matt
I first saw this film in the late 80's and thought it was pretty crap because I loved the first two films. Watched it again last year and didn't find it as bad as I first thought. But that song: 2 more days 'till Halloween etc... someone give me a shotgun!
Halloween III
Reply #8. Posted on June 28, 2001, 03:53:20 PM by Y2Cale
Anyone who actually thought anything in this movie was interesting needs to do two things.  One:  Think about how gay a sequal of Friday the 13th would be without Jason or a Nightmare on Elm Street sequel without Freddy.  Halloween=Michael Myers.  And two:  Punch yourself in the nuts real, REAL hard.
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