Let’s Review: ‘Hatchet III’ is a Gory, Funny Third Entry into the Horror Franchise

By June 10, 2013
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The third (and according to creator/writer Adam Green) final chapter to the Victor Crowley saga known as Hatchet III opens this weekend and don’t cha wanna know how it is?!

First of all, calm down. Secondly, it’s pretty dang awesome.

As the films are shot in real time, we pick up RIGHT where we left off in Hatchet II: a bloodied and somewhat relieved survivor girl Marybeth (Danielle Harris) in the woods, thinking she’s finally got the best of Victor Crowley and closing the chapter on the legendary nightmarish curse that’s been haunting Honey Island Swamp for decades.

Having escaped her nightmare, she ventures into the local cop shop where she proclaims that Victor Crowley is once and for all, DEAD…but the Sheriff has some BIG problems with that theory and decides to put her in lockdown until he can figure out WTF she’s talking about. Once established, a search and recovery team venture into the cursed swamp to look for the supposed bodies (from the first two films), and once all hell breaks loose a reluctant Marybeth is taken back to Honey Island Swamp after learning there’s only ONE way to put Crowley (known in paranormal circles as a “repeater”) to rest.

The cast is a veritable who’s who of the horror industry but as Green and Co. tried their damnedest to keep said appearances as a surprise for their fans…I will honor that and only talk about the ones that have been public knowledge since the beginning.

I actually enjoyed Danielle Harris (Halloween 4) as Marybeth Dunston more than I did in Hatchet II; she was MUCH more grounded in the role with a lot less crying and a whole lot of a**kicking and f-bombs. It’s never an easy thing to take over a role (Harris replaced Tamara Feldman) in the beginnings of something that could be a killer (pardon the pun) franchise like Hatchet, but I gotta say I’m proud of the girl – she turned me around.

Zach Galligan and Derek Mears

Zach Galligan is pretty hilarious as Sheriff Fowler with shades of Sheriff Brackett (Halloween) thrown in for good measure, and like most horror fangirls who grew up crushing on Galligan as the sweet and sensitive Billy Peltzer in Gremlins and spoiled pretty-boy-turned-hero in Waxwork, I was stoked to hear of his casting in H3.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre II fans will recognize one of the industry’s original survival girls, Caroline Williams, as local journalist Amanda and of course, Kane Hodder (below) is back as the one and only Victor Crowley – a dude who would make me simultaneously cry, vomit, urinate and evacuate my bowels at the mere sight of him.

I don’t know if Cody Blue Snider (son of Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider) is looking to have an acting career but I really enjoyed his presence and Team Unicorn’s Rileah Vanderbilt (known to Hatchet fans as Young Victor Crowley) who is out of makeup this time and a bit of a bada** herself. Combine that with the dry wit of Derek Mears (Friday The 13th remake, “Holliston”) and you’ve got a formula for hilarity in between all the gore…it’s gorelarious.

As far as the well-placed surprise cameos go… NO, I will not tell you and don’t even THINK about hitting IMDB (because they’re not listed there). Besides, don’t you wanna have the same “F YES!” moments I did?

If you’re looking for epic kill scenes, you’ve come to the right place. No, I will NOT tell you who dies and in what order but I WILL tell you that if you feel like there’s not enough blood and guts (oh my gosh, the blood and guts) with a generous serving of laughs in your life, then you’ve come to the right place. So much surplus that Green could open a “Crowley’s Blood, Guts and More” store…and it is EFFIN GLORIOUS.

There’s a couple blips here and there within the film but nothing that’ll detract from your experience. I’m not quite sure but I think there was a small inconsistency between H2 and H3; telling you what I think it is will spoil it but if you’re a Hatchet fan like me, you’ll know it as soon as you see it.

Even though Adam Green stepped aside from directing duties (due to his commitments to his FEARnet horror-com “Holliston”) and let his Number 1 known as BJ McDonnell direct this time around, rest assured the Green stamp is all over this mighty and fitting final chapter.

Did I mention that Honey Island Swamp actually EXISTS? I know Victor Crowley isn’t real but there’s NO WAY I’d go out there after dark, haaaaa.

See this face? This is one happy horror girl in a monster sammich with Kane Hodder (right) and Hatchet II‘s R.A. Mihailoff (aka Leatherface, Texas Chainsaw Massacre III).

THAT is how I felt after watching Hatchet III, minus the bruised ribs.

Final word: Hatchet III will EFF the shiz out of your eyeholes with gory goodness.

The Frame Rate: 9 out of 10

Hatchet III opens in limited release (check your local theaters) and VOD on Friday, June 14th.

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Cricket Lee
Star Wars fangirl. Named Best Kisser by Time Magazine. CEO/Host: Girl Gamer; host of Gecken: GeekNation; writer: Dread Central. You'll have a crush on me soon. Vote Quimby. Twitter: @crixlee http://www.imdb.me/crixlee