Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Silent Night, Deadly Night III: Better Watch Out!

Director - Monte Hellman (Back Door to Hell, Beast from Haunted Cave)
Starring - Samantha Scully (Bloodsuckers), Bill Moseley (House of 1000 Corpses, Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2), and Richard C. Adams (The Fall Guy)
Release Date - 1989
Genre - Horror/Sci-Fi
Tagline - "When your nightmare ends, the real terror begins"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection) (Silent Night, Deadly Night 3 Pack)

Rating (out of 5):
      One of my favorite holiday slashers is the classic Silent Night, Deadly Night.  The film is a shining example of what it meant to be a slasher in the sub-genre's golden age.  The film has a emotionless killer, the great slasher kills featuring sharp objects, and nameless bodies that deserve to be butchered.  The slasher is far from perfect but no one can deny the fun the film has to offer.  The film has went on to spawn four sequels with Silent Night, Deadly Night 2 being one of a hand full of films considered to be the worst movies ever made and the "garbage day" segment becoming an inside joke among horror fans.  The film used very little new material and mostly consisted of footage from the first film.  The third in the series takes place not long after the 2nd and featured a whole new cast.  I had never seen the film before but when I found 3, 4, and 5 in a set at FYE for just a few dollars I had to have it.
     The film follows a blind girl with psychic powers who is the subject of a doctor's experiment.  The doctor is trying to reach Ricky who is now comatose after what happened to him in SNDN 2.  During their sessions, the young lady and Ricky's minds start to blend together and they can see each other's memories.  This awakens Ricky and he follows the young girl and her brother home where he kills everyone she ever loved in order to get to her.

      Studios love a franchise and will stop at nothing to follow up a hit with a sequel, and if possible, follow that sequel up with another sequel.  SNDN2 was not a hit among fans of the first but the studio was banking on fans of the first film to give it a shot...and they did.  The film was a huge step above part 2 but nowhere near as good as the first film.  The acting in this one is typical of the early 90s direct to video VHS boom.  The cast tries their best with characters that were poorly written.  The story for this one feels like it was once bigger than the final product and was possibly condensed once they realized the budget wasn't there.  I loved the concept the story started out with the  psychic ability and brain dead patients but that quickly went south when the film turned into a slow paced slasher with no on screen kills and no real action.  Finally, the film has no real on screen kills and bloodshed and forgets that it is a slasher film at heart.  With that being said, the film does have some pretty decent practical effects.  These come in the form of a brain under a glass sitting on horror icon Bill Moseley.  It looked amazing and really impressed me.  Overall, Silent Night, Deadly Night 3 is better than part 2 but far from an entertaining slasher.  The film still deserves to be seen especially if you have watched the first film.  

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