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Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)

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Kids all over America want Silver Shamrock masks for Halloween. Doctor Daniel Challis seeks to uncover a plot by Silver Shamrock owner Conal Cochran.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Daniel Challis
... Ellie Grimbridge
... Conal Cochran
Michael Currie ... Rafferty
Ralph Strait ... Buddy Kupfer
Jadeen Barbor ... Betty Kupfer
... Little Buddy (as Bradley Schachter)
Garn Stephens ... Marge
... Linda Challis
... Starker (as Jon Terry)
... Harry Grimbridge
Wendy Wessberg ... Teddy
Essex Smith ... Walter Jones
... Nurse Agnes
John MacBride ... Sheriff
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Storyline

An apparent murder-suicide in a hospital emergency room leads to an investigation by the on-call doctor, which reveals a plot by an insane toymaker to kill as many people as possible during Halloween through an ancient Celtic ritual involving a stolen boulder from Stonehenge and Halloween masks. Written by MuzikJunky

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Witchcraft enters the computer age, and a different terror begins. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 October 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Season of the Witch  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,333,259, 24 October 1982

Gross USA:

$14,400,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the Rose of Shannon motel registry, Harry Grimbridge noted the location of his shop as an address in Sierra Madre. The bar that Ellie finds Challis in and the shop with the televisions in the window were located there in real life. See more »

Goofs

When Challis is caught in the factory he is flipped over a table and lands hard on some boxed inventory, crushing one of them. When he gets up and starts punching his attacker the box is no longer damaged. See more »

Quotes

Conal Cochran: It will be morning soon. Halloween morning. A very busy day for me.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Cinema Snob: Halloween (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Time Goes By
Performed by Madeline Bell
Written by Alan Parker
c/o Themes International Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Conglomerate Carnage.
2 November 2014 | by See all my reviews

A different animal to the Halloween films that preceded and followed it, Season of the Witch is slowly but surely gaining an appreciation as a standalone horror film. Gone is Michael Myers' indestructible killing machine, in his place is the nefarious Conal Cochran (Dan O'Herlihy), the owner of the Silver Shamrock corporation that specialises in Halloween masks. Cochran has a sinister plan this year - and it's deadly - Dr. Daniel Challis (Tom Atkins) and Ellie Grimbridge (Stacey Nelkin) are caught in the middle of the vile plot and may just be the only salvation to Americana.

With Nigel Kneale involved in the writing process Season of the Witch is delightfully fiendish. There's definite barbs being stung here about the commercialisation of holiday occasions, that capitalism kills, Cochran is intent on restoring Halloween to the true meaning of its origins, creating a Silver Shamrock world order in the process. Kneale would take his name off the credits when the studio tampered with his vision, a shame because his core essence remains - even if Cochran as a Warlock Wicker Man type could well have been genius.

With John Carpenter and Debrah Hill over seeing things from their production chairs, the picture had supervision of some standing. Tommy Lee Wallace maybe directing but it feels like a Carpenter movie, from Dean Cundey's photography - Carpenter's foreboding synth musical score – and the sharpness of the gruey horror scenes (which are excellent), it's not hard to see the "non Michael Myers" Halloween series that Carpenter had envisaged after part 2 had been and gone.

Boosted by an irritatingly potent advertisement jingle (a Silver Shamrock variation on London Bridge is Falling Down) that counts down the days to Halloween and the day of carnage, Season of the Witch is consistently gnawing away at the senses. Having Atkins and O'Herlihy propping up the acting helps, both are reliable performers for this material, while the race against time finale has edge of the seat credentials.

It doesn't all work of course, there's some drag and the narrative feels schizophrenic at times, while if it wasn't for Cundey's camera work then Wallace's inept direction of the non horror scenes would be over exposed. Yet as it asks Halloween franchise fans some forgiveness for not actually being part of the franchise, it delivers a smart sci-fi horror hybrid that's not without shock and awe. 7/10


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