Halloween III: Season of the Witch

The night no one comes home.

Year of Release: 1982
Genre: Horror
Rated: R
Running Time: 99 minutes (1:39)
Director: Tommy Lee Wallace


Tom Atkins ... Daniel Challis
Stacey Nelkin ... Ellie Grimbridge
Dan O'Herlihy ... Cochran / Conal Cochran
Michael Currie ... Rafferty
Ralph Strait ... Buddy Kupfer
Jadeen Barbor ... Betty Kupfer
Brad Schacter ... Little Buddy
Jamie Lee Curtis ... Curfew Announcer / Telephone Operator (voice) (uncredited)
Tommy Lee Wallace ... Silver Shamrock Commercial Announcer (voice) (uncredited)

Halloween III is the eighth in a series of reviews I've chosen to write as a tribute to Joe Bob Briggs for his lifetime of dedication to B, Drive-In and Exploitation movies. It was his Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In column and host segments on Joe Bob's Drive-In Theater and Monstervision that inspired me to write with what limited ability I have. Thanks for everything Joe Bob, we all 'preciate what you do.

Regarding the ordering of these 12 tribute reviews, I'll be counting down the first 12 horror movies that Joe Bob reviewed back in '82 and '83. Less the titles I've already done up to this point. By the time I decided to do this, I'd already done some of those first 12 titles, so call that a blunder on my part. Halloween III, technically speaking, was the 9th horror movie Joe Bob reviewed in his Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In column, and the 19th overall.

For anyone that might be curious, the non horror titles (or titles that I may have done previously) between Halloween III and my next review were: Parasite (#18) and The Last American Virgin (#17).


When a terrified toy salesman is mysteriously attacked and brought to the hospital babbling and clutching the year's most popular Halloween costume, an eerie pumpkin mask, Dr. Daniel Challis is thrust into a terrifying Halloween nightmare. Working with the salesman's daughter, Ellie, Daniel traces the mask to the Silver Shamrock Novelties company and its founder, Conal Cochran. Ellie and Daniel uncover Cochran's shocking Halloween plan and must stop him before trick-or-treaters across the country are kept from ever coming home in this terrifying thriller from writer/director Tommy Lee Wallace.


Halloween III, reminding us that you can take the slasher out of the movie, but you won't make any money. An as if that wasn't bad enough for the producers, then everybody who ain't seen movies like The Creeping Terror or Rocket Attack U.S.A. start goin' all Comic Book Guy with the "worst movie ever" nonsense. Look, your parents were disappointed with you too, but you didn't see them goin' around complainin' about you to anybody that'd listen, now did you? At least yours tried to hide it, now quit bein' so butt hurt about the absence of Michael Myers an deal with it. An while you're at it, just try to look me in the eye an tell me that Curse, H20, or Resurrection were better than this one even with your precious Michael Myers. Oh, right. The Dimension shame, you'd forgotten. Mike Myers alone does not a good Halloween sequel make. Just ask Busta Rhymes. Sorry about that, I may have gone too far just now, but that's the way I feel about it. Anyway, any idea who might love this one BESIDES anybody that's seen the most recent Halloween sequels? The Irish, of course. It's right up there with Leprechaun an Rawhead Rex in the Irish horror hall of fame, an with good reason. I mean, this is a movie that cuts the crap with all the Irish stereotypes an goes the actual FICTION route. All the time people're makin' movies about the Irish where they're perpetually portrayed as belligerent drunks, why is that? If you wanna know what the Irish're really like then pop across the pond, drop into the first pub you can find an start tellin' 'em about how shitty their whiskey is. You're likely to be blarneystoned to death of course, an if anybody ever found your body it'd be impaled by several dozen shillelaghs, an riddled with holes from the whiskey bottle shivs, but you'd certainly get the real experience. An who wants that? It's about time we got something cinematically different outta the Irish, I mean, aren't we all just a little bit sick of hearin' about The Troubles on CNN? An isn't it gettin' old knowin' that anytime a rummy shows up in a movie that the instant he opens his mouth a slurred Irish accent beggin' for shillins an blamin' all his woes on the bleedin' Limeys is about to spill out? Not to mention the fact that it's high time we saw some ugly Irish women. Surely to hell they can't all be as hot as they are in the movies. Finally, at long last, we've got a movie about the Irish that portrays 'em as stand up human beings that work hard, obey the law, an move steadily towards a goal of laserin' every kid in America's head into hog slop til bugs an snakes start pourin' outta their faces. Isn't that refreshin'? I mean, who can't enjoy that? Plus they totally stick it to England by stealin' a piece of Stonehenge, an don't try tellin' me that doesn't leave all the Irish eyes smilin'. Really warms your heart to see a group of people get some much deserved respect for once.

But movin' on, a lot of people might tell you there ain't squat that can be learned from this one, cept of course how to make Mike Myers fanboys cry, but those people're at least half wrong, an I've plucked out a few choice grains of truth to prove it. First of all, contrary to what MSNBC might have you think, it ain't big business that's gonna kill us all. Least not in one fell swoop, anyway. It's small business that you've gotta watch out for. I mean, these guys ripped off a chunk of Stonehenge an got away with it, but Wal Mart tries to cover up one little immigrant laborer gettin' crushed to death by a pallet of Thighmasters an you see how the government gets all bent outta shape. Somebody better start keepin' an eye on those crooked little operations before all our faces start meltin' into piles of cream corn. Second, whether it's business suits, bandanas, or leather jackets, when you notice a group of identically dressed people standin' around your stolen car, it's prolly best to just let it go. An third, if you happen to get captured after punchin' an automaton in the guts hard enough that your hand goes clean through its midsection an gets saturated with banana puddin', ain't nobody passin' you a towel.

But the thing that really waxes my scrotum about this movie, an you see it with some regularity anytime there's a doctor in the cast -- why's the doctor's wife always such a megabitch? Now, just cause she married the guy for his money doesn't necessarily make 'er a bitch, so it's not something that's there from day one. In fact, in the beginning they love the fact that the guy isn't home much, because he's SAVING LIVES. The woman gets to sit around at the country club all day sippin' those drinks with umbrellas in 'em that taste like somebody ground up five pounds of sour patch kids an some sage brush an mixed it in with some hydrogen peroxide tellin' all their mentally dilapidated friends about how the guy had to leave in the middle of the night to perform gall bladder surgery. Cause the way this kinda thing works is that when your husband's important, that makes you important by proxy. Only after awhile all the aristocraps don't care anymore an pretty quick the woman ends up sittin' alone all night with soup cans in 'er hair and an avocado facial mask on watchin' reruns of The Beverly Hillbillies while she gets more an more resentful. Now she couldn't give a flyin' fridge if the guy's savin' lives or not, cause he obviously don't care about savin' their marriage or else he'd stay home with 'er an take the Cosmo quiz so they can figure out what went wrong with their relationship. An does this kinda thing happen with guys too? I mean, women didn't tend to be doctors much in movies back when cinema was worth a damn, but do you suppose the man ever starts feelin' neglected once the wife becomes too busy to sit down an listen to what happened on Judge Judy that day when some plebe who obviously never watched the show before started arguin' with 'er? An how come none of 'em can seem to figure out that savin' other people's lives simply supersedes their desire to go out as a couple an pick out tropical fish for the livin' room? Would they be as understandin' of another doctor not showin' up for work when their appendix is about explode like a back alley butt implant? Suppose they'll be thinkin'; "Yeah, I'm as good as dead, but just knowing that the doctor is with their spouse pickin' out china patterns makes it all worth it." Some people just can't get over themselves, it's pretty pathetic. I had a little more I wanted to say about this, but I gotta be at the gym in 26 minutes, so nuts to you guys.

The movie begins with some guy makin' a quick jaunt through gang country to escape some Jehova's Witnesses tryin' to pass out Watchtowers. After hunkerin' down long enough for the pursuing vehicle to pass 'im by he figures he's staved off brainwashin' for another day, only pretty quick some chalk faced goon in a business suit grabs 'im by the nape of his neck an starts squeezin' his throat til his head looks like a zit that's about ready to bust. NOBODY leaves the New York Stock Exchange, punk. So the guy gropes blindly for a dollar to try an distract the suit but all he can find is a chain that's attached to a cinderblock holdin' up a 1973 Buick LeSabre an after some serious terror strength, he's able to yank the block out an pretty quick the beast rolls back an crushes the suit between itself an another jalopy til he looks like a Hostess Snoball with all the fillin' mashed out. Elsewhere, the world's only gas station night watchman's hard at work watchin' a TV report about one of the slabs from Stonehenge goin' missin'. The authorities've questioned both the Storm Giants and Rock Biter but still have no leads. Then this this unbearably obnoxious jingle for Silver Shamrock Halloween masks comes on an everybody but me leaves the theater. Cripes almighty, this shit puts the Head On ads to shame. But anyway, the watchman hears a noise from outside an thinks about goin' outside to look but because it's rainin' an he's only makin' $4.25 an hour he thinks better of it, but about that time the guy that escaped the board room baddies shows up an scares the bejezus out of 'im an tells 'im "they're coming!" an crashes on the floor with a fright mask in hand. Meanwhile, Tom Atkins stops by his ex-wife's house to try an make sure the kids remember who he is an tries bribin' 'em with fright masks. Unfortunately, Mom's usin' Tom's alimoney like a boss, an they've already got the vastly superior cool kid Silver Shamrock masks an Tom ends up lookin' like a chump. Then Tom breathes a sigh of relief when he gets paged by the hospital cause even in the morgue the bodies're warmer than his bitch of an ex-wife. So Tom heads back to the hospital where the night watchman's brought The Running Man an when the TV in one of the rooms starts airin' the Silver Shamrock jingle the guy goes ape shit an tells everybody they're all gonna die. Tom agrees, but before the jingle can annoy 'im to death he gets the TV turned off an has the nurse sedate the guy cause he's had a pretty bad hangover for the last few years an all this noise's really rubbin' his brain raw. Then Tom sexually harasses one of the nurses an goes to catch a nap on the sofa in his office while another stock broker creeps into the patient's room an sticks his fingers into the guys eye sockets so far he can wipe 'em off on the pillow beneath the guy's head an then twists his cheek bones around like a Rubix cube.

The nurse catches the tail end of the exchange an awakens Tom with a scream, but by the time Tom catches up with the guy he's in the company vehicle takin' a bath in regular unleaded an pretty quick he goes up in flames like Andre Rison's pad. Poor Tom can't get a moment's peace around here. So while Tom calls his ex-wife an tries to explain to 'er that some guy committin' a murder suicide in his hospital just might trump her need to get a babysitter for happy hour, The Running Man's daughter shows up to ID the corpse. Yup, that's him alright. She'd recognize that... well she's pretty sure those're his shoes anyway. A few days later, Tom goes to talk to the coroner. He wants to know who that roman candle was, how he knew the corpse, an how he got a parkin' spot so close to the entrance when Tom has to park way over by the interns. So after a couple more days pass the corpse's daughter (Ellie) tracks Tom down at the bar where he's tryin' to relax an enjoy some cartoons an asks if her Dad said anything to 'im before his eyes got squished into Cadbury Egg filling. So Tom lies an pretends like the old man gave 'er even the mildest shred of acknowledgement an right away she knows Tom's full of it cause she's got middle child syndrome an doesn't think the man capable of carin'. Well fine then, the man's dyin' wish was for his daughter to give it up for the doctor that tried to save 'im, whaddya want from Tom, he just works there, yeesh. But Tom does tell 'er that Dad was ravin' like Carl Rove when Ohio was called for Obama an that he was clutchin' a fright mask. So they go over to Dad's novelty shop where Ellie explains that Dad went missin' the night he went to pick up his latest mask shipment, so Tom calls the battle axe again to make sure he's still the world's biggest asshole an then he an Ellie head for the Silver Shamrock factory. But once they hit town they notice everybody seems to be watchin' 'em like a black man in a Zales an pretty quick Tom starts worryin' that they think he's English an may try to murder 'em after they get trashed on Irish car bombs. So then he an Ellie get a room an Tom has 'er distract the desk clerk while he checks the registry. Lets see... Mike Oxlong, Olden Magroin, Anita Hardcock, AHA, there he is, right below Connie Lingus. But en route back to the room, an RV pulls in an nearly turns Tom into road kill. Then a mere 10 seconds later he almost gets flattened by still another piece of subplot on wheels an this one goes on a long winded rant about how this motel's a toilet an how she wouldn't be here in the first place if she wasn't havin' to boycott FedEx for accidentally deliverin' her vibrator to the neighbor.

Once Tom finally gets back in the room an he's at least reasonably sure nobody's gonna plow through the front door to finish 'im off he tells Ellie that her Dad was here the night he disappeared an that he's never been so happy to be in Irish country cause he needs a LOT of drinks by this point. Then he asks Ellie if he aughta get another room an she asks 'im where he wants to sleep. Why, just to the left of your freshly pounded ass seems like an ideal spot, that work for you? Yup, that's fine. Then the 6pm curfew bull horns start goin' off an all of Eerie Indiana shuts down for the night, cept for the liquor store for some reason, which is just as well cause Tom's startin' to get the shakes. But on his way back to the room he runs into this rummy who offers to help lighten the bottle for 'im an he ends up tellin' Tom all about the head Darby (Cochran) an how he brought in his own Irish work force to steal all our American jobs from the Mexicans. He also tells Tom he's gonna torch the place if he can manage not to drink his Molotov cocktails before they leave his throwin' hand an Tom walks away as quickly as possible before too much of the guy's smell starts clingin' to his clothes. Unfortunately for the bum, he runs into a couple of Cochran's empty suits an one of 'em puts the Kona Crusher on the poor bastard til his skull caves in like a Chilean coal mine. So while Ellie soaps up all 'er 2000 parts in the shower, Tom calls the coroner, who tells 'im that everybody in the morgue hit the Fool Aid so hard that they didn't even realize they'd been inspectin' the burned up car's intake manifold for two solid days an so she's got nothin' to report. Then Tom goes back to the motel where Ellie promptly assumes the position an after Tom's cavity search reveals nothin' he plants some evidence. A few hours later, she's ready again. Course, Tom isn't, which makes 'im feel old. Which means she's obviously the opposite of old an... oh dear. Then once Tom gets his story straight in his head for the cops he asks how old she is an is relieved to find out that she's at least old enough to be flattered by his cripplin' fear. Meanwhile, in the room next door, the second bit of subplot that almost ran over Tom earlier (Marge) is about to go to bed when she notices the tag fell offa the fright mask she set on the dresser. After closer examination she decides to shove 'er hairpin into it an pretty quick a light sabre shoots out an blasts 'er right into 'er kisser an pretty quick she ends up lookin' like an albino anaconda tryin' to swallow a water buffalo. Then Tom an Ellie hear a car pull in an leave the room to find Marge bein' wheeled out an into Saint Paddy's Wagon an the desk clerk tells 'em not to panic cause Cochran'll take care of everything just like he did with O.J. The next morning, Tom calls the coroner again an tells 'er to find out everything she can about Cochran an see if maybe he can get 'im off the hook just in case Ellie's lyin' about 'er age.

Then Tom an Ellie go to the factory where the receptionist tells 'em that Dad picked up his order on time an left mutterin' something about 'preachy elitist bastards.' About that time, Cochran shows up an assures Tom an Ellie that Marge'll be fine an that she's been flown to San Francisco to get that sex change operation she's been hankerin' for. Then Cochran starts talkin' to the obnoxious family that owns the RV cause the father (Buddy) sold more fright masks than any other salesman an he's bein' rewarded with a tour of the factory. Maybe if he's lucky they'll reward 'em by euthanizin' that bastard kid of his. But Buddy feels bad about nearly makin' Tom a permanent part of the grille on the RV so he invites 'im an Ellie to come along. So they take the tour an Cochran gives the little shit a mask so he'll shut the hell up an so we won't have to look at his ugly face no more, all the while Tom's lookin' around spottin' suit after suit after suit an tells Ellie that all these corporate executives look a lot like the guy that set his face on fire at the hospital. But while Tom's yackin' 'er ear off she notices 'er Dad's car in a parking garage, only when she starts gettin' too close the not so secret service moves in an tells 'er these are not the solenoids she's lookin' for. Tom's just about had it with Big Brother an the Thought Police, so he tells Ellie to get their stuff together an steal all the ashtrays while he goes to the pay phone. His call cannot be completed as dialed. Nor that one. Oh an don't even think about callin' them, they ask way too many questions. So Tom heads back to the motel, only by the time he gets back Ellie's been hauled off in the Paddy station wagon an pretty quick the silent majority shows up an he has to bust out the back window an hide out til he thinks of a plan. Fortunately he saw this documentary about an invasion of body snatchers back in the 50s an knows just what to do, least until he sees the clone army takin' Ellie into the factory an he gets this look on his face like he's tryin' to decide if an impractical relationship based upon nothin' but sex is worth the trouble. Eventually he decides to go for broke an sneaks into the factory, but pretty quick he's discovered an one of the suits starts chokin' 'im out a la Homer Simpson til Tom turns the tables an puts his fist right through the creep's gut bucket to reveal about a mile of CAT-5 cable an about 30lbs of lemon meringue pie fillin'. Unfortunately, Cochran shows up about that time with more droids on roids an they take Tom for a walk so Cochran can make like a James Bond villain an explain his diabolical plan while Tom looks around desperately for somethin' to wipe his fist on.

The next morning, Cochran takes Tom to the final processing room where he's got the clone army chippin' off little tiny pieces of the Stonehenge slab that went missin' an Cochran explains that back in the good ole days the monument was used as a sacrificial alter before the druids sold out to the tourism industry. The stone, it seems, has spooky witchcraft powers an he's got all his robochodes crammin' little specs into the Silver Shamrock tags that hang offa the masks. Then Cochran switches to the All Captive Network so Tom can see that Ellie's still alive, an then switches over to Marge who's not at all, an when Tom starts gettin' resentful Cochran gets this offended look on his face an reiterates that her explodin' like a potato in the microwave wasn't his fault, unlike what's about to happen. So now Cochran switches over to another channel where the obnoxious RV family is sittin' thinkin' that Buddy's supposed to critique some advertisements. Fortunately, when the TV in the room kicks on the screen starts flashin' like a Japanese anime til the kid's head melts into Spaghetti O's an bugs an snakes start pourin' out an pretty quick the snakes latch onto the parents til they both need faintin' couches. So while Cochran calls the Orkin Man, we see a montage of kids in fright masks all headin' home for the big prize giveaway at 9 'o clock, after which we finally come back to the coroner. She's about a day behind Tom in terms of discovery, but she eventually figures out the parts she's lookin' at aren't automotive an gets on the horn to tell Tom that; begun, the clone wars have. Only she's bein' watched, an when she starts dialin' the phone one of the wascawy widgets grabs ahold of 'er an puts a three quarter inch drill bit through 'er temple an taps 'er brain like a beer keg. Elsewhere, Tom's given his own room, mask, an TV so he can watch the giveaway too, an while Tom's at least thankful that the network's airin' the original Halloween until 9, he's still kinda curious as to why Cochran's such a diabolical dickhead. So Cochran explains that civilization's really gone to heck in a hand cart ever since the bronze age an that in HIS day, Halloween was about sacrificin' spoiled rotten kids so as to increase the potency of the spells used in witchcraft. Seems like a win/win situation to me, I'm startin' to like this Cochran guy. So, with all the exposition necessary havin' been divulged, Cochran leaves Tom to enjoy the climax of Halloween. Unfortunately, Cochran seems to be imbued with both the positive and negative aspects of the typical James Bond villain, an not only does he fail to take the knife outta Tom's pocket, but he strapped Tom to a chair with wheels on it. So it doesn't exactly require alotta McGuyverin' for Tom to roll over to the TV, kick the tube in, an cut his bindins loose so he can go find Ellie an save the world. I mean, if you consider a world with kids a positive.

Alrighty, well, Halloween III is probably the best known, text book example of people's disappointment completely destroying what is in all honesty a pretty decent movie. Now I admit that these days, probably due in no small part to how unbelievably terrible the more recent Halloween sequels have been, many people are finally starting to come around and give Halloween III its due. But back in 1982 when the movie was released this movie pissed off the horror community like no other. And that was all because they expected the movie to be a continuation of the Michael Myers storyline. That much, you really can't fault them for. Back in those days they didn't have as much TV exposure for trailers to upcoming movies, and Fangoria was still fairly new, so a lot of people went in expecting something that never materialized. From that point on, whether this unrelated sequel was any good or not on its own merits was completely irrelevant. What Halloween III was, didn't matter. What it WASN'T, mattered. So it got panned and destroyed by the horror community because in their minds, not knowing what lay ahead for the series, any sequel that features Michael Myers would be good, and any that lacked him, would be garbage. How's that reasoning workin' out now? Enjoy those last two sequels featuring rappers did ya? But as I mentioned, a lot of time has passed, and the butt hurt is finally startin' to fade. The plan, after the demise of Michael Myers in Halloween II, was to produce a new movie each year bearing the Halloween title. All of which were to be unrelated, except that they would all take place around Halloween. Which is a pretty clever idea really, you're guaranteed to churn out a new movie each year and even beyond that, if any particular movie is a big hit you can then spin sequels off of it. Course, Michael Myers is, without question, one of the biggest horror icons of all time, so you can see which course of action they took. Which is fine, I didn't think parts 4 & 5 were that bad at least. Realistically though, the only mistake the producers made with this movie was titling it Halloween. If they'd given it any other title, maybe just used the subtitle only, it'd probably be considered a classic. Unfortunately that's not what happened, and this movie will probably never fully get the accolades it deserves.

Well then, lets drill into this thing's brain an see what gets stuck in the drill bit grooves. The plot is pretty good, if a little bit out there and somewhat nonsensical at times. The twist near the end doesn't make a damn bit of sense, and because it's so close to the end I'm not gonna explain it, but just know that it doesn't work. And of course, you've got bugs an snakes spawning from the remains of melted faces too which isn't exactly logical, but that sorta thing doesn't really bug me the way that twist did. We're assuming Stonehenge is magic, so little details like the insects appearing aren't that big a deal. But in general, the plot is pretty decent, if rather derivative of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Though it's pretty clear that was by design, as "Santa Mira," where the movie is set, is the same name used for the town where Invasion takes place. The acting is great, Tom Atkins is fun to watch as the borderline alcoholic doctor, though he's not as good in this as he was in Night of the Creeps. But the guy that really makes the movie work is Dan O' Herlihy as the smooth as a baby's bottom villain that can switch from jovial gent to icy bastard at the drop of a hat. Stacy Nelkin is alright as Ellie, but really isn't anything special. Tom Atkins is probably not popular enough to warrant a pass on the resume portion, being largely known for just a few roles, so here's who matters and why: Tom Atkins (My Bloody Valentine 2009, Maniac Cop, Night of the Creeps, Escape from New York, The Fog, Tarantulas: The Deadly Cargo), Dan O' Herlihy (The Last Starfighter, Robocop, The Cabinet of Caligari 1962), Michael Currie (The Philadelphia Experiment, Dead and Buried), Ralph Strait (The Beastmaster), Brad Schacter (Fear), Nancy Kyes (Halloween, Halloween II, The Fog, Assault on Precinct 13), Jonathan Terry (Return of the Living Dead, Return of the Living Dead II), Al Berry (Re-Animator, Ghost Warrior, The Last Starfighter), Maidie Norman (What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?), Loyd Catlett (TRON 1982), Paddi Edwards (Ghostbusters), Dick Warlock (Beastmaster 2, The Abyss, Pumpkinhead, Remote Control, Firestarter, Halloween II, When a Stranger Calls), Joshua John Miller (The Wizard of Gore 2007, Class of 1999, Near Dark), Brad M. Bucklin (Jurassic Park, Wavelength), Tommy Lee Wallace (Vampires: Los Muertos, The Fog). Jamie Lee Curtis also has a little cameo as the voice of the phone operator, and as the voice of the curfew recording.

The special effects are pretty decent, though there aren't all that many of them, and the movie really needed to show some balls and give them a little more screen time. The obvious reason for that statement is the fact that when the kid's head melts he's got the mask over the top of it so you can't see anything, but almost equally as disappointing is the scene where the coroner gets the drill through the temple. It's shot from a long way away, with her head obscured. Not a gurgle, not a scream, nothing. You can imagine that if somebody was drillin' into your brain pan you might feel a small degree of discomfort, but apparently she didn't. The eyeball gouge near the beginning isn't shown either, this movie really is pretty chicken shit in the special effects department now that I think about it. What we do get is the woman's laserblasted face which isn't too bad, and a lot of yellow crap similar to the stuff that comes outta The Tall Man when his finger gets cut off in Phantasm. There's a pretty decent blood geyser from the neck of the hobo when the robo executives tear his head off, but that's from a distance too. So the short of it is, what effects they have the decency to show are alright, but they're pretty pussified about showin' anything. The shooting locations are another high point. The isolated little farming community that's 100 miles from anything gives the movie a very claustrophobic feel to it. Everybody who lives there knows everybody else, an none of them like Tom an Stacy, so it creates a genuine sense of foreboding. The factory is a pretty nice location as well. Apparently, the building was a paper factory that really fouled up the air pretty significantly for the surrounding area. You've also got the hospital, the motel room and a pretty decent auto wrecking yard, though none of those are particularly plot relevant. The soundtrack is really good as well. The best way to describe it is to imagine the score for The Thing, but synthesized. Now, anybody that's seen many of these late 70s early 80s movies knows that it's not particularly easy to make a synthesized soundtrack sound foreboding, they almost always come off cheesy, but this one really works. Every scene with music is all the better for it, and equally important, they knew when to abstain as well. They're pretty catchy tracks too, with the exception being that god damn Silver Shamrock jingle which is nothing more than "London Bridge is Falling Down" with different lyrics as sung by Alvin and the Chipmunks. I get that jingles are supposed to be obnoxious so they'll stick in your head, but that doesn't mean I've gotta like it. It's hokey as can be, by design, and it works, but it's not something I recommend using as a ring tone, lest you be publicly bludgeoned when your phone goes off. The bottom line with Halloween III is this; if you can move past the fact that it doesn't have Michael Myers, you'll wanna see it. If you can't, don't. For those that can't, I recommend Friday the 13th Part V, I think you'll really enjoy it.

Rating: 75%