Halloween 3
Season of the Witch

Tag Line : The Night NO ONE comes home.

Halloween 3 : Season of the WitchHaving blown up the 2 main characters in the part 2 and therefore finishing off any chance of a third film, but believing there was still more money to be made in the Halloween series, John Carpenter was left with the slight problem of how to continue the franchise.

The solution, make a third film with all new characters and an entirely different plot. Brilliant (NOT) ! Yes that's right "Halloween 3" a sequel that is not a sequel as such. This time the plot revolves around a fiendish mask making company that are planning to commit mass sacrifice by selling masks that will kill the wearer on Halloween night.

The story starts off in California. An old man is taken to Hospital suffering from exhaustion and anxiety, he is clutching a Halloween mask and keeps muttering "they're going to kill us all". Hours later he is dead and his attacker incinerated when his car explodes in the car park outside.

Bewildered by these bizarre events, Dr Dan Challis (Tom Atkins) teams up with the victims daughter Ellie and try's to uncover what happened. They trace her fathers last known whereabouts to the Silver Shamrock mask company, which is located in the small Californian town of Santa Mira, where he was to have collected a consignment of Halloween masks from.

There they meet the sinister Conal Cochrane (Dan O'Herlihy), the head of the company, who has a fiendish trick-or-treat planned for the children of America. It turns out he has stolen one of the monoliths from Stonehenge (and how did he manage that then?) and has harnessed the stones ancient power.

It turns out the masks have a small circuit board, containing elements of the stone, built into the button tag on the back. This, when activated, will shrivel up the head of the wearer. Then, once they're dead, venomous insects and poisonous snakes emerge from the mask to kill any bystanders (and where do they appear from then?).

Unlikely as it seems, this is the case. The company have been advertising heavily on TV, with really annoying adverts sung to the tune of "London bridge is falling down" and the masks are going to be activated when the company shows their main promotional ad on Halloween night.

To compound the films unfeasibility further, it turns out that the workers in the mask factory are all androids and in another unlikely plot twist, the first Halloween film is shown playing on the TV during the film.

Now if John Carpenter had called this anything other than "Halloween" and had made it as a stand alone horror movie, this wouldn't be a bad film. But as it is, it just comes across as a dissapointingly poor sequel. Only see this if you are a completist like myself.

Overall Marks 5/10

Terrifying Trivia.

  • Alternate tag lines "The night nobody came home", "The Halloween Horror Continues", "Witchcraft enters the computer age", and "A different terror begins".

  • Apparently John Carpenter wanted to take the series in a new direction with this film, but instead cursed the series to critical damnation, as the film flopped at the box office.

  • Tom Atkins is a regular actor in John Carpenter films, having also starred in "The Fog", "Assault on Precinct 13" and "Prince of Darkness". He also had a minor role in "Escape from New York".

  • Dan O'Herlihy, who plays Cochran, also played the OCP chairman in the Robocop films. He also played the alien 'Grig' in "The Last Starfighter", which was directed by Nick Castle who played Michael Myers in the first "Halloween". Strange but true!

  • The films budget was $2.5Million

  • Nigel Kneale originally wrote the script, but after seeing how violent the film turned out, sued the producers to take his name off the credits. As a result, Tommy Lee Wallace is the only writer mentioned in the films titles.

  • There are cut and uncut versions of the film in circulation, the uncut versions have a longer take of the old guy in the hospital having his eyes gouged, a longer shot of the old tramp getting his head ripped off with blood spurting out of the stump and a shot of the aftermath of the lady in the hotel room getting a blue laser beam in the face, showing a close up a bug crawling out of her maimed mouth (instead of just fading to black).

  • The original UK VHS release of this film in the early 80's by Thorn EMI was of the cut version, but the re-release in the early 90's by Quantum Leap/Game Entertainment was of the uncut print (even though this version hadn't been re-classified). The UK video and DVD by MIA issued in the late 90's were of the uncut version (and passed by the BBFC), but later DVD releases by Sanctuary Entertainment and Scanbox reverted to the edited print (WHY????).

  • The Australian video release in the mid-80's by Thorn-EMI was uncut. The recent Australian DVD release by Ingoframes is of the cut version..

  • The gore in the Spanish version is trimmed similarly to the old UK release, but includes alternative takes on some of the scenes. For example, when Dr Challis's ex-wife tells the kids to turn the TV down we see her say it into the camera, rather than just hear a voice over. It also misses out the snakes coming out the boys mask when the Kupfer family are killed and also misses out the part where the snake bites Mr Kupfer, but includes an additional shot showing him reaching for help at the surveillance camera.

  • The uncut version has also been screened in the UK on terrestrial TV by the BBC, and on satellite by SKY Movies and the Sci-Fi Channel. (see the video clips section to the right to see these uncut clips in full)

Extra Info.

Cast & Crew.

 

 

Video Clips.
(MP4 format).

Theatrical trailer (3.26MB).

Extended gore scenes. (4.50MB)
Scenes missing from many releases.

Buy Online..

Buy it at Amazon.co.uk

Buy the UK DVD (cut).

Buy it at Amazon.Com

Buy the US DVD (uncut).

Buy the US BD (uncut).

Notes on affiliate sites.
 

 

Other films in the series.

 

All Time Classics.

Reviews A-Z.

Reviews index. Home. Menu.