The one Halloween sequel in which He doesn't come home, Halloween III: Season of the Witch was producer John Carpenter's attempt to get the series away from the original's psycho-on-the-loose story line and turn it into a ... more »vehicle for more far-fetched Halloween-themed horror tales. Incredibly, the fans voted for more of the same and Carpenter walked away for others to rehash the Michael Myers plot line in a succession of look-alike movies that are still turning up every few years. After the mysterious death of a toyshop owner, a doctor (Tom Atkins) and the man's daughter (Stacy Nelkin) investigate the Irish-dominated Northern California community of Santa Mira, a company town owned by the Silver Shamrock Novelty corporation. Atkins and Nelkin are typical low-rent horror movie protagonists, dim bulbs who discover an Invasion of the Body Snatchers-style conspiracy involving sharp-suited corporate robots. But guest star Dan O'Herlihy steals the film as a Celtic joke tycoon who hates the way American kids are despoiling the religious spirit of Samhain and decides to teach them a nasty lesson. His scheme, which involves a stolen Stonehenge megalith and a techno-magic spell that turns the heads of TV watchers into writhing masses of snakes and insects, is value for money, and O'Herlihy mixes enough serious malice into the charm to come across as a great screen bad guy. --Kim Newman« less
Yes, this is the one with no Michael Myers in it. Despite its having no connection whatsoever to the previous two "Halloween" films, I've always liked this one. It's a nice combo of 50s creeping paranoid sci-fi and '80s horror. This flick doesn't get nearly enough love from horror geeks.
Mike W. from SPRINGFIELD, MI Reviewed on 1/21/2009...
HALLOWEEN III IS A VERY DIFFERENT KIND OF MOVIE. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH MICHAEL MYERS. I LIKED IT MYSELF. I WOULD RECOMMEND IT TO HORROR FANS.
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Watch The Magic Pumpkin
Stanley Runk | Camp North Pines | 10/28/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When talking about the Halloween series, you'll always get the schmuck who says, "oh yeah, then there was that one that didn't even have Michael Myers in it. That was stupid". Yup, I've heard it time and time again. Most of the time this statement comes from someone who hasn't actually seen the film or is just a victim of the general consensus that says this is a terrible film coz it's not a legitimate sequel. Sure there are people out there that honestly just don't like the film, and that's cool coz there isn't a single film that everyone agrees is good. If they have reasons for not liking the film other than the lack of Myers, that's A-OK with me. Here's a little backstory. Halloween 3 was the first and only film in an experiment of John Carpenter's. Carpenter went to great lengths to show the audience at the end of Halloween 2 that Myers is dead, terminated, gone forevermore. Carpenter hated the idea of a second Myers film, but was pressured to write a second(with the help of alot of Budweiser according to Carpenter in a Halloween documentary). He left the directing to someone else coz he felt he'd already made this film before(which he did). After part 2, Carpenter decided to start an entire series of "Halloween" films, each with a different theme. One would be made each year, and come out in theaters around Halloween. If you ask me, that's a pretty cool idea. Halloween 3 was the first film in this new direction. Carpenter producing and Tommy Lee Wallace directing. However, everybody bitched about it and the idea was dead in the water. Carpenter was screwed and abandoned Halloween altogether, then Halloween producer, Akkad, saw dollar signs and brought Myers back with no more association with Carpenter. So that's it. This was a film that coulda been the start of a cool concept, but nooooooooooooooooo. Michael's not even in it, damn it! So, Halloween 3 is forever labelled as that rotten movie to avoid like the plague. So, what about the movie itself? Well, it's no masterpiece of modern cinema, but this movie deserves more attention than it gets. It certainly deserves a cult following if it hasn't got one already. It's actually quite bizarre. It's got a helluva concept that actually uses the druid roots of halloween for it's villains' motives. These points were briefly hinted at by Dr. Loomis in Halloween 2. It revolves around the pagan aspects of the holiday. There's some flat out crazy stuff in this movie. Plus it has Tom Atkins which is worth two stars right off the bat. You get orange blooded homicidal androids, an evil toymaking company that rules and terrorizes a town in Orwellian fashion, and some crazy friggin halloween masks. Tell me that scene where they "test run" one of the evil masks on an unsuspecting family isn't totally demented and %#$!ed up! That scene scared the hell out of me as a kid. Who can forget the Silver Shamrock song? The band Helloween sample it on one of their songs so I know at least someone out there likes this film. How bout that lady getting blasted in the mouth with the laser, and later has bugs crawling in her mouth? Wacky! And how about that ending? That's one of the coolest endings I've seen in a horror film. You certainly don't see endings like that in this day and age. Everyone wants closure, everyone wants a nice ending. Halloween 3 ain't got no nice ending. But Michael Myers isn't even in it!!! It's impossible to ignore this film's reputation, but if you dig horror films that are definitely out-there, try overcoming prejudice and check this movie out. Then if you dig it, you can proudly flip off the rest of the world for tarnishing this movie's reputation and keeping you away from it for so many years. The hell with Michael Myers I say. And don't forget to watch the big giveaway at 9!!"
"Watch the magic pumpkin!"
Jennifer C. | Houston, TX USA | 07/11/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I feel I must defend this movie, even though I'm sure mine isn't the popular opinion in this case. I fondly recall seeing it in the theater when I was 7 years old, in 1982, and remember loving it even then. Sure, the plot has nothing to do with the original Halloween and its many sequels (as has been repeated here ad nauseum), but it's a charming little standalone film and deserves better reviews than it's been getting here! If this movie was not called "Halloween III" and had nothing to do with the Halloween franchise, would the reviews still be so bad? Possibly, but looking at the movie on its own, I can honestly say I've seen a thousand times worse than this. Half the complaints I see are that there's no Michael Meyers, Laurie Strode or Dr. Loomis in it... so what? The movie makes up for that with a decently creepy and unique plot, some rather disgusting scenes if you're even halfway squeamish, and some good old fashioned scenes where the not-so-jaded viewer might even jump. The movie is classic - "Eight more days till Halloween, Halloween, Halloween... Eight more days till Halloween, Silver Shamrock!" That song is incredibly catchy, memorable to the point where you might find yourself singing it a week later, and is horrific in itself, because it's basically a sugar-coated countdown to mass murder! Don't forget the scarily amusing kids on TV, bopping to the beat, in special masks... Not to mention the bugs - perhaps I'm biased, as the only things that EVER affect me in horror movies are bugs... ugh. At any rate, I tend to think of this movie as at least one of my top 25 favorite horror movies of the 1980's. It can be cheesy, but in the best way possible, and I know I'd certainly choose to watch this over some of the rather dismal, trendy 90's "horror" movies, which have unfortunately gotten MUCH better reviews. I guess it's really all a matter of taste.The movie never claimed to have Michael Meyers in it, so try not to feel so ripped off because you just assumed he'd be in it. If you watch the movie with an open mind, dim the lights and pop some popcorn, you might find that you'll actually enjoy it."
"The Night Nobody Came Home"
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 10/13/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Some towns suffer through tornadoes, others endure hurricanes, but I think the town of Santa Mira has had it the worst. First they endured aliens (Invasion of the Body Snatchers) and now an evil conspiracy involving old world sorcery combined with new world technology to create an unspeakable horror in Halloween III: Season of the Witch.
I rather enjoyed this movie. From reading reviews, it seems the biggest problem people have is being a sequel of the original movie, they are disappointed by the fact Michael Myers isn't in the movie. I've read that since Michael died in the second movie, the intent was to create new sequels, each involving different tales relating to Halloween. Only problem was that this movie was poorly received, so the idea was canned and Michael was brought back for the next movie. I would have liked to have seen where the original idea would have led myself. As a stand alone movie, I thought this was pretty good. After the strange murder of a patient in his hospital, Dr. Dan Chalis (Tom Atkins) meets the daughter of the recently deceased, Elle Grimbridge (Stacy Nelkin) and together they investigate the mystery behind her father's death. This leads them to the town of Santa Mira, the Silver Shamrock Toy Company and it's mysterious owner, Conal Cochran, played by Dan O'Herlihy. As the story moves along, the conspiracy slowly reveals itself, and we can see the extent of the plan. As Dan and Elle get captured, we now see them not only trying to expose the plans, but fight for their very lives. While the movie did move along pretty well, there were some points that sort of dragged, but not, in my opinion because of the actors, but because of the script. The dialogue was a little clunky in some areas, sort of drawing me out of the movie. There were many aspects I would have liked to seen developed more, like the witchcraft angle, or the technical elements, but that's the way it goes. The one part I did find unsettling was the death of that young child. Yeah, he was annoying, but it seems pretty rare that young children get killed in these movies. I am not saying I wish that scene wasn't in the movie, as it was actually integral to the story, just like in Jaws when the shark killed the Kitner boy. I am just used to teenagers or adults as victims in these types of movies, not young children.
No extras, but a really good presentation of an often misaligned movie. Had this movie had a different name, I am sure it would have been better received. I guess if you are going to call your movie a Halloween sequel, it better have Michael Myers in it."
The third Halloween installment was terrifying!!
Floridaguy178 | Florida,P'Cola USA | 03/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is in my opinion one of the most terrifying films I have ever seen, the whole premise of this film is enough to frighten hell the out of anybody. The story for the film was written by Nigel "Quatermass" Kneale, and British highly acclaimed science fiction/horror writer. Nigel "Quartermass" Kneale was so overwhelmed and disgusted by the gruesomeness(blood and gore) of this picture, so he sued the producers of this film to have his name removed from the credits. The film has a deeper meaning to it. Many Americans don't realize the hedonism of Halloween or their not concerned with it. Thousands of young children in North America go trick or treating every year on Halloween, yet they don't realize what their celebrating. The film involves a Celtic warlock disguised as a CEO of large company called Silver Shamrock, who is getting ready for a Halloween like no other. Meanwhile somewhere in the rural outskirts of Northern California an old man is getting chased by a group of assilants in charcoal colored business-suits. The assilants appear to have to have no remorse, and no feelings as well. He gets wounded by the assilants in an industrial parking lot. And ends up the hospital, he is treated at the local hospital by Dr. Challis, Mr. Grimbridge tries to warn everyone about the masks by saying their going to kill us all. Dr. Challis thinks that Mr. Grimbridge is hallucinating so decides that he should be put on some drugs to calm him down. Eventually he calms down but at night time one of the assilants steathly comes into the hospital and goes to Mr. Grimbridge' room, he cuts off his life support and then he squeezes his head until his brains burst. Mr. Grimbridge dies and he walks out of the hospital and gets in his car, the car explodes. Dr. Challis doesn't understand why the mysterious man killed himself, and wants figure out why he murdered Grimbridge so he teams up with his Grimbridge' daughter to try solve this mystery.
Their search leads them to a company town called Santa Mira in Northern California, where Silver Shamrock Novelties is located, what they eventually discover is terrifying. A man named Conal Cochran is selling Silver Shamrock masks to millions of young american boys and girls. What the children and their parents don't realize is what's inside the logo of the mask. Their is a piece of stonehedge fragment hidden inside the back logo of every single mask. When the silver shamrock commercial is aired on Halloween night, the stonehedge inside the mask will be activated and melt the viewer's head who is wearing the mask. Dr Challis discovers that Cochran is interested in taking the world back to ancient Druid times when human sacrifices were made and as he says, "the hills ran red with the blood of animals and children". Indeed, this is what Cochran wants and to achieve this goal, Cochran uses witchcraft and an ancient power to achieve his evil goal. A trick on the children is what Cochran wants, but this is no ordinary trick...this trick will kill millions and set the world back thousands of years into a time of evil and treachery, all of this which is supposed to happen on Halloween night of course. I saw this film on the sci-fi channel and I have also watched in on video. Overall even though this film did break away from the Michael Myers story, it is a terrifying installment to Halloween I and II. "