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Overall Rating

Awesome: 17.74%
Worth A Look: 12.9%
Just Average: 7.26%
Pretty Crappy: 12.9%

3 reviews, 106 user ratings

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Halloween III: Season of the Witch
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by EricDSnider

"A derailment in a series that was kind of derailed to start with."
1 stars

According to our friend the Internet, “Halloween” impresario John Carpenter wanted to further the franchise after Part II but couldn’t figure out a way to do it. So the plan was to release a new Halloween-themed film each October, unrelated to each other except that they dealt with the Halloween holiday itself.

This lasted exactly one year. “Halloween III: Season of the Witch” was released in 1982 and went on to make about seven dollars before being consigned to the late-night HBO pile, which is the only way anyone I know has ever seen it, until I rented the DVD.

The way I figure it, Carpenter and Co. made two mistakes. First, if you don’t want people to think it’s a continuation of the story and characters in “Halloween” and “Halloween II,” don’t call it “Halloween III.” I’m surprised this would even need to be pointed out.

Second, don’t call it “Season of the Witch” if there are no witches in it. Again, this seems obvious.

So we’ve found two major flaws, and that’s just in the title. Once the movie actually begins, it only gets worse.

Things begin promisingly enough: An old man clutching a Halloween mask is pursued by men in suits who look like Mormon missionaries but who are actually robots. (Insert automaton-Mormon joke here.) The old man smashes one of the guys with a car and gets away, then winds up in a hospital where his cries of “They’re going to kill us all!” fall on characteristically deaf ears and he is knocked out with thorazine. Then, the missionary he didn’t kill shows up and gouges out his eyes and crushes his skull, all with his bare hands. Immediately after his kill, the assassin sets himself on fire. As far as I’m concerned, the movie can end there.

Meanwhile, we have met the on-call doctor (and apparently the only doctor in the entire hospital), a beefy, mustached fellow named Dan Challis (Tom Atkins). He’s a drinker with a domineering ex-wife who is the closest the movie comes to an actual witch. He also has two kids whose names I don’t know and don’t want to know.

He’s pretty disturbed at how the old guy said everyone was going to be killed and then he got killed, so he teams up with the old man’s Flashdance-looking daughter Ellie (Stacy Nelkin) -- a good 20 years his junior -- to have sex and find the killer. They have no prowess in either activity.

The trail leads them to the town of Santa Mira (”Saint Look,” in Spanish), home to the Silver Shamrock novelty company. Old dead dad ran a small novelty shop, and he had purchased products from Silver Shamrock just days before his death.

Santa Mira is a company town, complete with 6 p.m. curfew and Bates Motel-ish lodgings. (There is a scene extremely reminiscent of “Psycho” that is either a rip-off or an homage, it’s hard to tell which. We’ll go with rip-off, since we’re in a bad mood.) The man who owns the town and the company is kindly old Conal Cochran (once-respected British actor Dan O’Herlihy), who surely would not harm anyone and who therefore must be actually be as evil as the day is long.

For reasons the movie refuses to explain no matter how politely you ask, Cochran plans to use his very popular Halloween masks to kill children and their parents. What happens is, you put on the mask and then you watch a special Halloween-night TV show sponsored by Silver Shamrock. The show gets all mesmerizey, and eventually the mask melts onto your face and bugs and snakes come out of your head and kill you and attack your parents.

Stonehenge is somehow involved in all of this, I kid you not.

I’m not especially curious why Cochran wants everyone dead; what reason do you need, really? What puzzles me is why he would use his novelty products to build up a huge audience just to kill that audience. I’m no business planner, but it seems counter-productive to kill every single one of your customers.

I’m also curious how Silver Shamrock Halloween masks became so popular. There are only three varieties: a witch, a jack-o-lantern and a skull. Yet even kids who are dressing as other things for Halloween are wearing these masks, so we have ballerinas with witch faces and hobos with skull faces, and so on. How Silver Shamrock achieved this level of penetration into the mask market is beyond me, especially given how annoying their TV commercial is. (It’s to the tune of “London Bridge”: “Eight more days till Halloween, Halloween, Halloween/Eight more days till Halloween/Silver Shamrock,” with variations according to how many days till Halloween.)

There is a reference to some of Cochran’s early novelty products, including the “Dead Dwarf” gag and the “Soft Chainsaw” gag. I would be interested in seeing more information on either or both of these products.

Quite an assortment of odd, unlikable characters are on hand for the festivities in “Halloween III.” The leads, obviously, are repellent; such is the nature of being a lead in a horror film. But then there’s a gabby man-woman at the motel who accidentally gets melted by a mask, and a family of white trash who drive a Winnebago.

The finale is ambiguous, but it doesn’t matter. “Halloween 4” was back on the track of parts 1 and 2, and “Halloween 3” was something everyone hoped we’d forget. Were it not for the middle 30 minutes, which take approximately 73,000 hours to watch, forgetting it would be easy.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=1128&reviewer=247
originally posted: 05/22/02 17:07:22
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User Comments

2/20/17 morris campbell tacky trash with or without michael myers 1 stars
8/16/14 eeeheeheehee not as bad as most say. I think the absence of Michael is why so many people hate it. 3 stars
9/12/13 hygt very tasty snack 5 stars
12/10/12 Jamie Best of the Halloween sequels. All the others are lame. 5 stars
10/26/10 Jensen Please explain to me what this has to do with the series? 1 stars
7/21/10 art I"LL eat CROW!,HALLOWEEN was the trend-setter frIDAY THE 13TH was a POOR MAN"S HALLOWEEN! 3 stars
6/21/10 Sarah The people who wrote 'gay' like cock. This is the best of the sequels in the sorry series. 5 stars
1/07/10 art FRIDAY the 13TH BURRIES halloween! 1 stars
7/25/09 art if you have seen on halloween movie,you've SEEN THEM ALL! t 1 stars
3/24/09 John good! but needed to be called samhin or something else 4 stars
10/18/08 Mike Gay 1 stars
3/24/08 blarginbadigalnohif gay 1 stars
7/23/07 Nick Unwatchable, what a flop 1 stars
12/27/06 David Pollastrini This was Carpenter's idea? 1 stars
11/06/06 adan it was gay. 1 stars
9/19/06 Richard Halloween 3 is a classic one of the best in the series! 5 stars
8/08/06 Doreen Hated it! 1 stars
7/14/06 David Cohen I can accept that there was no Michael Myers, if they had replaced him with something cool 1 stars
5/02/06 Josh Standlee Tom Atkins is a stupid fuck! He only stars in films to show off his gay mustache! 1 stars
11/23/05 cr freaky and confusing, no micheal myers and a annoy song. 1 stars
10/15/05 Darren O Some good ideas sunk by plot holes and loose ends, and never delivers any real terror. 2 stars
8/30/05 ES Not about Mikey at all, really gross is about all this is 2 stars
7/13/05 Brandy Harrington Oooooooooooooooooooooooooo 1 stars
12/30/04 gerbilerba this thing is liquified feces- it makes my spider spray brown mucus 1 stars
12/20/04 Lucas Stensland Great movie 4 stars
11/07/04 Dave fuck this crap 1 stars
11/02/04 potpixee as far as b-grade horror goes, this is my favourite... awesome sound track 5 stars
10/31/04 JA Dr. Challis' pants 4 stars
10/31/04 aaron brummett ekoazarakalb@yahoo.com mask maer was a robot! Tick or treat! no one dies... yet! 5 stars
10/19/04 Ben Yakaboski A nice pace of change from the Michael Myers storyline. 4 stars
8/13/04 Nick Hallwoeen 3: Season of the witch shouldn't even be a part of the halloween series 1 stars
7/24/04 Phoenix II Stupid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
7/16/04 TJ Awesome, Very Original 5 stars
7/01/04 American Slasher Goddess Awful, you'll have that Halloween jingle in your head for months 1 stars
6/06/04 Ryan Clark People who wanted Michael Myers are the ones who dislike this underrated gem. 4 stars
4/28/04 X This movie was blasphemy 1 stars
2/21/04 Denise Duspiva the maovie doesn't even fit in the series it should be burned 1 stars
2/09/04 Whatevr Tommy Lee Wallace should be hung, drawn, and quartered for making this movie. 1 stars
12/31/03 what the frick Not at all what I expected 2 stars
12/16/03 Jack Sommersby Very entertaining, colorful and stylish. 4 stars
11/28/03 john what the hell....? 1 stars
11/10/03 Joe Blow Pathetically Cheesy 1 stars
11/07/03 steve edwards i remember this came on during those "free HBO weekends) it blew royally...robots cyborgs ? 1 stars
10/31/03 American Slasher Goddess Horribly dull and has one of most annoying jingles in cinema history. 1 stars
10/15/03 Erik Van Sant Avoid like the plague. You'll never get the fucking jingle out of your head. 1 stars
9/22/03 Steph Horrible. Terrible. Embarrassing. Evil...But not in a good way. 1 stars
7/29/03 Jake Jon Lyrik, Tom Atkins played a Dr, not a Cop. Also the actors beat out -New horror films!- 5 stars
7/21/03 Double G This movie sucks!!! They forgot one big thing, it's not about Micheal Myers. Piece of Krap! 1 stars
4/16/03 Jon "Thumb the Toad" Lyrik Tedious, dull, and wooden. 1 stars
1/24/03 M.C. Every great director is allowd 1 screw up, your the man Carpenter, lets forget this movie 2 stars
12/28/02 Jack Sommersby Unappreciated, very entertaining horror flick. 4 stars
12/28/02 HorrorFreak Not bad 4 stars
12/10/02 the Grinch Flawed by some dumb editing mistakes, but clever and ahead of its time... 4 stars
11/01/02 Joe This movie takes the meaning of sucks to another level 1 stars
10/26/02 K man Not as bad as people say. Learn some history about the move and why they made it. 3 stars
10/26/02 pissed off viewer it sucked big hairy donkey dick! 1 stars
10/18/02 Killer of Serial Killers The series is better wihout Myers. A good, if not great, step forward. 4 stars
10/09/02 chris one of the worst halloween movies 2 stars
8/16/02 Scott this one sucked some monkey nuts 1 stars
8/02/02 Jake EricDSnider doesn't understand what this movie means at all...a terrible review "Shame." 5 stars
7/08/02 alan ginsberg ohwowooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 1 stars
5/25/02 TimmyToday Worth the admission price - FREE! 5 stars
5/23/02 Kyle Where the fuck was Michael Myers? 1 stars
5/23/02 Charles Tatum Average stuff, especially the elongated fight near the end 3 stars
5/20/02 Ron Godek I could of made a better movie with my ass cheeks pressing up against glass 1 stars
3/05/02 Alan Smithee 3 more days till Halloween, Na Na NA-NA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
2/02/02 Stuart Richards Better than 6, but still pretty shite!!! 3 stars
12/12/01 ben wasden A better title would have been 'Season of the crap.' 1 stars
12/03/01 auroradae the stupid trash i have ever seen. where was mike meyers? 1 stars
10/31/01 Jake It's halloween of '01hurry home! Even the snakes can act in this great twilight zone movie. 5 stars
10/30/01 Henry Ginsberg The absolute worst movie ever.And imean ever. 1 stars
9/28/01 Phoenix Take Michael out, and you have this garbage. 1 stars
9/25/01 Cock King Disjointed, over the top mess of a movie 2 stars
8/05/01 E-Funk Did someone fart? 1 stars
7/09/01 JT Surprisingly refreshing taste of originality apart from the rest of the series 4 stars
6/06/01 King Jackass LiL is right. BigBad KISS MY ASS! THIS MOVIE SUCKED! 1 stars
5/05/01 anti-bullocks This horror movie takes itself serious! loud scary music pounding away & good actors. 4 stars
5/03/01 BigBad Best in the series/ to hell with Michael!!! 5 stars
4/22/01 ron fucking gay 1 stars
4/13/01 LiL This movie was empty without Michael, he is what holds the Halloween movies together 1 stars
3/21/01 Sthenno An odd,interesting film with good performances and eerie music.The plot is too mish-mashed. 4 stars
3/12/01 Jake This one was very interesting. I like it. The music alone is great. 5 stars
2/24/01 debra minor loved it loved the music have it on tape any chance of getting a free mask from movie 5 stars
2/09/01 KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi Huh? What? 1 stars
2/04/01 steven nittolo halloween 3 was great even though it had nothing to do wih micheal myers it was diffrent +A 5 stars
1/12/01 Egg36 Underrated horror movie. The story is very impressive. 4 stars
11/01/00 Buffalo 0 STAR? How could they have thought that Halloween could be better without Michael Myers? 1 stars
9/23/00 Doug Had potential if completed apart from the Halloween Series 2 stars
9/02/00 My Name Barely seems like a movie; nothing happens, no climax, not much violence... 1 stars
7/29/00 Bender The story is interesting, but the movie is highly overlong. 3 stars
7/23/00 Tyler Peterson Cliched, with a bunch of dumb blood and gore. It sucked. 1 stars
6/12/00 DAVID The movie would of been better on its own but hay it wanted to make money!! 3 stars
4/29/00 Yo Momma ahhhh....beautiful shite! 1 stars
3/01/00 Kyle Broflovski Still, not the FIRST series to delve into this type of parallel universe... 1 stars
11/18/99 msf6 This ranks up there as one of the top 10 worst movies ever made TOTAL SHIT 1 stars
9/12/99 k.TrAcY w. Hill&Carpenter turned a legal obligation into a good story. They beat the system. 4 stars
7/18/99 SID "Drug induced nightmare" indeed. 2 stars
5/13/99 ras_jose@yahoo.com actually the plot is interesting, just had nothing to do w/H'lwn 1 and 2. 3 stars
3/07/99 KK Dusenbury seven more months to halloween, silver shamrock(X30)this theme will drive you insane 2 stars
12/20/98 mike this is just total crap...who the hell thought of this anyway? 1 stars
10/28/98 Silent Rob A clever idea, BOTCHED!!! Theseries of non-related Halloween films might've been neat. 2 stars
10/15/98 {{{OZ}}} Flawed concept from the outset. Not worth bothering with. 1 stars
10/14/98 Bluntman Boring!!!!!!!!! Where's Mikey? 1 stars
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  22-Oct-1983 (R)
  DVD: 14-Aug-2007

  N/A (15)

  16-Jun-1983 (M)

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