Better Watch Out! - Silent Night, Deadly Night III (1989)

Discussion in 'Slashers' started by rhett, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. rhett

    rhett Administrator

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    [​IMG]

    Watched this for the first time last night, and I'm surprised it really hasn't been discussed here. Quite a good little slasher, which has the distinction of being done by one of the independent greats from the sixties and seventies, Monte Hellman (Two-Lane Blacktop, The Shooting, Ride the Whirlwind). The film is set apart from most slashers because of that old school sensibility - Hellman finds a few great moments with his older detective throughout, particularly in the detached, even nostalgic, ending. Hellman still throws in plenty of effective horror set pieces too, notably a surreal start in a Caligari-esque white building. Laura Harring gives an early performance (somebody bought those boobs you see in Mulholland Dr.) and Bill Moseley is wonderfully understated (a rarity, certainly) as the revived Ricky.

    The plot was interesting in that it continued on the story from the first two films, but instead of just retreading the same ground, infused it with quite a bit of loss and regret. Moseley is definitely one of the most bizarre killers in slasher lore, basically a vegetable throughout, even sporting an exposed brain. There are quite a few jabs at the government, always questioning why a.) they'd revive such a threat to society and b.) whether such a revival could even be considered life. Classic Hellman stuff!

    The Terror is featured on television, serving as commentary throughout. Hellman worked with Jack Nicholson in the sixties, so this was a nice little homage as well as a throwback to the kind of moviemaking Hellman does best. It's been awhile since I've seen a good slasher, and I wasn't expecting a whole lot from this, but the film definitely delivered. It's too bad the other two Silent Night, Deadly Night sequels didn't pick-up where this one eerily left off. Anyone else see it?

    Oh, and most random use of the quote "Is it live, or is it Memorex?" ever.
     
  2. Mattapooh

    Mattapooh Member

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    Shit, I'm REALLY intrigued to see this one now. I've got a VHS rip downloaded, I should check it out really soon.
     
  3. HAEMORRHAGE

    HAEMORRHAGE If he dies, he dies

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    I've been curious to check out parts 3, 4, and 5 even though 4 and 5 have nothing to do with the original. And, correct me if I'm wrong, 3 also doesn't have anything to do with the previous but it does have the character of Ricky in it.
     
  4. MorallySound

    MorallySound Mad Mutilator

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    I enjoyed number 3 quite a bit. Better than most sequels. The only SNDN sequel I haven't seen is part 4.
     
  5. rhett

    rhett Administrator

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    Well, having Ricky as the killer (again) is a pretty significant connection! There are a bunch of flashbacks to the first film, too. They've just secularized it by taking out all the religious undertones of the first two films. That's okay by me.
     
  6. Kolpitz

    Kolpitz Purely and Simply Evil

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    I've had this on VHS for over a year and a half now (picked it up at a rental store that was liquidating VHS tapes) but I still haven't watched it (I also got parts 4 and 5). I just can't bring myself to watch VHS on my HDTV, which I got about two months after getting this tape. Maybe someday I'll watch it, along with the dozens of other VHS tapes I picked up.
     
  7. streetlight

    streetlight Member

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    I wish Eric Freeman returned to play ricky. I have 1&2 on DVD, and 4 and 5 on VHS but I am pretty sure I downloaded part 3 somewhere. I haven't seen 3,4, or 5 yet. I'll probably have a marathon on some night though to watch them
     
  8. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

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    Not that I've seen any of these films yet, but why isn't this one on dvd?
     
  9. Angelman

    Angelman OCD Blu Ray Collector

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    Because it is bad.

    It is better than part 2 but not more entertaining. I watched all of these one Christmas and by part 3 they all reeked of that 90s direct-to-video/cable vibe. Parts 4 and 5 are particulalrly bad.
     
  10. Zombie Dude

    Zombie Dude Well-Known Member

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    I'd still be interested in seeing it. I've heard it's pretty underrated and isn't half bad.
    At least it attempts to continue the franchise and its killer.
     
  11. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    This isn't my favorite series of slasher films but this entry did hold my interrest,perhaps because it's such a strange setup.Basically a sequel to a pair of killer Santa /slasher pics it spins off into a sort of mad scientist picture that's more in the vein of 50's sci-fi.The psychic angle gives it an offbeat spin and it has some effective bits.It's absurd at times but oddly creative at others.Wouldn't call it ''good'' per se but it's an interresting curio at the very least,strangely memorable,if just for it's oddness.
     
  12. fceurich39

    fceurich39 Well-Known Member

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    i have parts 3,4,5 on vhs and the single disc of part one as well as the oop part one and two double feature
     
  13. shockwave

    shockwave New Member

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    I've only seen 2 & 3 but from what I remember about 2, about half the movie was flashbacks and the rest was, well just complete crap so yes Pt 3 was much better compared to that but I'd hardly say it was a good film, decent for a watch but not much more beyond that. Still I wouldn't mind getting a boxed set or something of them.
     
  14. HellRazor

    HellRazor New Member

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    Any movie that has a killer with a transparent skull cap covering his brain is A-OK with me!
     
  15. I never liked that series at all. I only saw 1 and 2; 1 was lackluster and 2 is one of the worst films I've ever seen, but I'm intrigued about 3 due to this little review.
     
  16. snowbeast323

    snowbeast323 New Member

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    I'm embarassed to say that i've never seen any of them.....as they've never been readily availible in the U.K. after the first one was banned in 1984......I wanna see them though.....badly
     
  17. CPT HOOK

    CPT HOOK Well-Known Member

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    Totally random (just like pretty much everything I post), but I was watching the 1989 slasher movie Darkroom, produced by Nico Mastorakis, and noticed the house where the entire movie takes place is the same house from Silent Night Deadly Night III: Better Watch Out.

    Here's a screengrab from Darkroom (1989):

    vlcsnap-2018-09-03-17h52m02s578.png

    And here's a website with pictures of the locations from Silent Night Deadly Night Part III:
    http://www.set-jetter.com/ontheset/silentnight3
     
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