Basket Case 3 (1991) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Frank Henenlotter
Starring: Kevin Van Hentenryck, Annie Ross, Gil Roper
Rated: UR/Region O/1:78/1080p/Number of Discs 1
Available from Synapse Films
The saga of Times Square Freak Twins Duane and Belail Bradley takes its most bizarre twist yet. It all starts innocently enough when the Bradley boys join kindly doctor Granny Ruth and her family of unique individuals for a road trip through the deep South. The occasion – Belail’s about to become a proud monster father – and no basket is big enough to hold this ungodly brood! But when a pair of warped sheriff’s deputies kidnaps Belai’s babies Granny Ruth and the family strike back. Belial single-handedly decimates the local police station with crazed, Terminator-like fury – and that’s just the beginning. Threatened with the loss of the newest additions to their family, Granny Ruth and the others concoct a delicious revenge against their enemies, climaxing in Belial’s futuristic one-on-one with the town Sheriff.
If you look within the Basket Case trilogy you will be hard pressed for whatever reason to find someone who speaks highly of the third film. While the movie does take more of a comedic route, much like the previous installment, I don’t find it a total waste at all. As a matter of fact I think I enjoyed this film much more than the average horror fan, but maybe that is because it plays more to my comedic taste. There are some subtle comedy moments in this film. And when that is mixed with the outrageous plot and characters I don’t think it is possible for me to get bored. The movie does the classic Basket Case thing of picking up where the last one left off for us, which I always like about horror films. If you watch the “What’s in the Basket” doc on disc one, you’ll see that even director Frank Henenlotter doesn’t like this one very much and sees it as a bit of a waste. I can see signs of the story being a bit thin, but the humor we get tossed into it does make it very watchable for me. I also can really appreciate the road trip aspects of it as well, which is at least something new to the format.
And while actual horror might be hard to find, we do have some gore. We have a police station massacre that comes to mind as a good way for us to soil our gore needing oats, even if some of the effects are apparently unfinished according to the director. Heads are twisted, faces are bitten off, and still I hear some complain of a lack of gore. Well, maybe the red stuff is light, but the actual effects side of things isn’t lacking at all. Plus, we also get all of our freaks from before back even with a few more cool looking ones in the mix as well. It isn’t anything pretty overall, but I still found it fun and a fitting way to end the story that really took this turn in the previous film. If you are a hardcore Henenlotter fan you will be happy overall with this one. This movie isn’t as horrible as some like to proclaim, but I can still see where some could have a few issues with it. Especially if we see how solid the other two are in comparison. The transfer here isn’t lacking, as it takes the same ratio as part 2 and looks near identical as far as the technical stuff goes. Kids come into the mix, we get a road trip, we get a little song here as well, but you probably never get bored even if you are a little let-down.
– Original Theatrical Trailer
– Reversible Cover art with newly commissioned front piece by Joel Robinson
Quality of Transfer: 97%