PLOT: A large and evil cooperation has some dastardly wicked tricks for the young children wearing their Halloween masks. And when a doctor and one of his patient’s daughters become suspicious, they search to find out what is behind the company and the annoyingly catchy television commercials it constantly airs.
REVIEW: My first viewing of HALLOWEEN III: SEASON OF THE WITCH may have been one of the most disappointing movie watching experiences of all time. As a fan of the first two HALLOWEEN films, I was ready to see another scary slasher flick. As horror fans today are all fully aware, this film stepped far away from Michael Myers and introduced a new kind of villain. Conal Cochran (Dan O’Herlihy) is a monster on a whole new level, a business man with the evil intention of killing children. He does this by using the magic of a fun candy-filled holiday, turning it into a terrifying hell while they are wearing the deadly Silver Shamrock Halloween masks his factory makes.
The story follows genre great Tom Atkins as Daniel Challis, a doctor investigating the strange and brutal murder of one of his patients. He and the victim’s hot daughter Ellie (Stacey Nelkin) discover that her father had gone to Conal Cochran’s factory, which happens to be manufacturing the hottest children’s Halloween masks of the year. Once they make the trip themselves to find clues to his death, they discover a few more tricks than treats. Not long after they arrive, they notice the other visitors in the small little town begin to suffer strange accidents or disappear into the factory of freakish fun.
I give credit to HALLOWEEN III for taking a unique approach and finding more fearful delights than just a masked psycho for the holiday. It’s been many years since my first viewing and setting aside my initial disappointment, the re-visit was not nearly as bad as my initial reaction would suggest. In fact, there are a number of effective horror-filled moments throughout. This includes the creepy crawly kills when that annoying kid is watching the commercial, as well as the woman who accidentally removes a chip from a mask. Add to that, Tom Atkins taking the material seriously enough to make it better than it is and you have yourself a marginally entertaining cult flick.
Now I don’t mind the disturbing nature of this flick at all – the plot revolves around a dude playing to kill a bunch of children which is f*cked up on a whole new level – but around the last half hour it just feels lazy. Once Ellie and Challis arrive and are clearly in danger, the energy level is gone. The menacing minions that help Cochran – robotic men in business suits – seem to lose the scare factor that works when we know less about them. When they all scatter to track down the badassness that is Tom Atkins, it is far from chilling and more than a little silly. Yet then there is that final scene. Never mind that he doesn’t just turn off the stupid television. Hell no, Mr. Atkins creates probably the most memorable moment in the film and in the end, this out of sync sequel is more fun than scary, but still worth returning to.
BEST TNA SCENE:The lovely Stacey Nelkin shows a little skin coming out of the shower and during a love scene with Tom Atkins. And for the ladies, Atkins offers up his rear end for show.
BEST GORE BIT: Director Tommy Lee Wallace has some fun with this one. There is a torn off head, and burnt up face with a bug crawling out of its mouth, and that scene with the little kid watching TV. If creepy crawlies like insects and slithery snakes freak you out, they are even more disturbing coming out of a young man’s skull.
HALLOWEEN DRINKING GAME: Take a drink or shot:
- Every damn time that Silver Shamrock commercial plays.
- When you see a clip of the original HALLOWEEN on a television.
- Tom Atkins does something badass… which is generally every time he is on-screen.