Saturday, February 11, 2017

Killjoy 3

Director - John Lechago (Bio Slime, Blood Gnome)
Starring - Trent Haaga (Starry Eyes, Tales of Halloween), Victoria De Mare (Deadpool, Dust Up), Al Burke (The Eric Andre Show, L.A. Paranormal)
Release Date - 2010
Genre - Horror/Comedy
Tagline - "You can't keep a bad clown down"
Format - DVD (Personal Collection)

Rating (out of 5):
     Its rare to see a trilogy end with a bang.  Some are able to offer up equal quality of films like the Evil Dead series where Army of Darkness is an amazing film but Evil Dead II still reigns supreme.  You sometimes get sleeper hits where the third film is not successful as the previous films but over the years fans become more appreciative of the film and hold it in high regards.  Prime examples of this is Return of the Living Dead III and Day of the Dead.  However, most of the time the third film in the series tends to suck with little or no dedication to the film at all from the cast, crew, or production company.  Films like Child's Play 3, Pumpkinhead: Ashes to Ashes, and Wrong Turn 3.  By this point in the series it is more of a cash grab than quality entertainment.  That's usually not the case with Full Moon. Full Moon is known for their series.  They built a name for themselves over the decades with series like Subspecies, Puppet Master, Trancers, Evil Bong, Gingerdead Man, and was even able to turn around their Killjoy series.  After 8 years Charles Band decided to give Killjoy another chance.  He hired John Lechago to direct and brought Trent Haaga back as Killjoy to reprise his role from Killjoy 2.  This was, in fact, a turning point in the series.
     The film follows Killjoy who is summoned by a man and at the last minute sent into a mirror to wait for all eternity.  We then jump forward and a group of college students are throwing a party at a professor's house while he is out of town.  They clean up his home and discover a package with no name on it.  The open it and find an antique mirror.  They place it on the wall and that night strange things start to happen.  One of them gets sucked into the mirror and has a boxing match with one of Killjoy's servants, Punchie (Burke).  They see him and think he is having a seizure but are able to pull him out of it.  They then learn that Killjoy and his minions live in the mirror and they are soon stuck in his world where death is imminent.  It isn't until the professor arrives and we learn that it was him that stuck them in the mirror world and he is actually the estranged father of Michael from the first film.  He tries to use the power of Killjoy's real names to stop him but is unsuccessful but one of the young ladies learn that Killjoy's powers can be stopped with laughter.
     I had always heard that the third film was the best in the original trilogy but I never had a drive to watch them.  I think it was a wise choice for Full Moon to bring on John Lechago and take the urban setting out of Killjoy.  Making the film look and feel like the more modern Full Moon films worked well for the film and did a great job setting it up for future crossovers.  The acting in this one is great.  The college students could have used a lot more experience and a little more direction but, as sad as it sounds, they are not the center of attention.  The film's main focus, as it should be, is Killjoy and his merry group of miscreants.  Killjoy (Haaga) has found his voice and really brought out the personality and sadistic charm.  For the first time, his character feels complete and not just tossed together for the sake of film.  In addition to the great character of Killjoy is Batty Boop, Punchie, and Freakshow portrayed by Victoria De Mare, Al Burke, and Tai Chan Ngo.  Freakshow, portrayed by Tai Chan Ngo is a mime clown so there is no dialogue but Ngo is able to act out his scenes with corresponding facial expressions and gestures which is no simple task.  Punchie (Burke) does a great job as the muscle of the group and his rendition of the iconic hobo clown.  His acting is simplified to fighting scenes and standing around menacingly but he is able to pull it off.  My favorite performance comes from Victoria De Mare.  I don't want to show my ignorance but this is the first film I have seen from her but she killed it as Batty Boop.  Coincidentally, after watching the film I was introduced to her by a mutual friend on Instagram and I am now on the hunt for her films.  Though she is heavily painted, she is stunning and browsing her Instagram feed will get this married man in trouble!  Hot Hot Hot.  But don't let her looks fool ya.  She is more than a beautiful woman and her role shows she has some serious acting chops.  The story for this one is a little of what we saw in the first two Killjoys mixed in with a ton of modern Full Moon mayhem.  We get some well written over the top characters mixed with unconventional situations resulting in tons of bloodshed and laughs.  This is the first film in the series that shows a real funny bone which is sad considering the series follows a demonic clown.  The film is small in scope but this works well and reason enough to give the audience these characters they didn't know they needed.  Finally, the film has several on screen kills.  It does incorporate some CGI but not enough to make the film look bad.  The kills could have done without it but it doesn't take away from it either.  The practical effects we do get are great.  All four of the clowns look insane with Killjoy getting some obvious upgrades.  Overall, Killjoy 3 is fucking fun.  Plain and simple.  We get some memorable characters and some great one liners that reminded me a lot of the Leprechaun series which I enjoy.  Check it out.  

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