The third & final instalment of the Hatchet series changed directors with Adam Green handing the reigns over to B. J. McDonnell. However, Green did write the story & watching the movie you’d be hard pressed to find any obvious differences between the two styles. You can read our review of the first one here & the second one here.
Hatchet III continues the story exactly where it left off at the end of the second with Marybeth (Danielle Harris) absolutely destroying Victor Crowley (Kane Hodder). Seriously, she messes him up to such an extent it’s actually believable that she has finished him off! Marybeth believes it enough to walk away & head to the police department.
She walks in covered in blood & holding a gun while saying ‘I killed him”. Unsurprisingly she is arrested but man, Danielle Harris looks like an absolute badass here. Credit to her as an actress, you just want to see more & more of Marybeth!
Sheriff Fowler (Zach Galligan – you’re so cool, Brewster) sends his team into the swamp to recover the bodies while Marybeth sits in a cell. No-one believes her story except for Amanda Fowler (Caroline Williams), the Sheriff’s ex-wife & a reporter who is a supposed expert on Victor Crowley.
She tells Marybeth that Victor isn’t dead, he is a repeater. Set to relive the night he died, looking for his father. Only Thomas Crowley’s ashes will stop Victor & only the bloodline of one of the boys who started the infamous fire can deliver them. That so happens to be Marybeth who is naturally very reluctant to go back into the swamp.
That is until Victor starts slaughtering his way through the police, paramedic & fire teams that are in the swamp. Marybeth, along with Amanda & Deputy Winslow (Robert Diago DoQui) head off to the house of Abbott McMullen (Sid Haig) to get Tomas Crowley’s ashes & put a stop to Victor once & for all!
Hatchet III doesn’t quite manage to better the two movies that came before. It follows the same formula we’ve seen already but with less interesting characters. Remove Danielle Harris, Zach Galligan & a returning Parry Shen playing his third different role in these movies & pretty much everyone else is forgettable.
What that does mean though is a ton more deaths & a lot more gore. Credit to Hatchet III for finding new & fun ways for the cast to get killed. Here we get death by defibrillator, heads hacked in half, spines ripped out (Predator style), arms ripped off & hilariously…. death by accidental rocket launcher!
Once again Hatchet III can’t be faulted for its tongue in cheek violence & blood-letting. It’s why anyone sits down to watch these films. At this stage, the story is coming across a little tired & the huge coincidence that we now have a character who knows exactly how to stop Victor is a little too much.
The humour doesn’t quite sit right either. Sid Haig’s turn as a dumb redneck racist isn’t that funny even if Deputy Winslow plays off him well. You can’t help but feel that the movie should be above ‘all black people like chicken, watermelon & stealing’ jokes. It’s never needed this kind of rubbish before.
Hatchet III does wrap things up nicely though & the finale of Victor & Marybeth facing off against each other again is awesome. Danielle Harris can’t be praised enough, we just don’t get believable badass female roles like this & she absolutely kills it.
The Final Score - 6/10