Critters 3 (1991)

critters 3 poster 1991 movie
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Acting: 4/10
Visuals: 4/10

Leonardo DiCaprio's first film

A big step down from Critters 2

 
Movie Info

Movie Name:  Critters 3

Studio:  New Line Cinema

Genre(s):  Horror/Sci-Fi/Fantasy/B-Movies/Comedy

Release Date(s):  December 11, 1991

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

critters 3 crites review

Here come the Crites!

The Critters are moving out of Grover’s Bend.  When eggs end up latched to a car headed to the city, the Crites nest and hatch in a rundown apartment that its owner (William Dennis Hunt) is setting for demolition.  Fortunately for Annie (Aimee Brooks) and her little brother Johnny (Christian & Joseph Cousins), Charlie MacFadden (Don Keith Opper) has been tracking the Crites and could be the only hope of saving the people of the apartment building…including the owner’s young son Josh (Leonardo DiCaprio) who has become trapped as well.

Directed by Kristine Peterson, Critters 3 sometimes goes by the title Critters 3:  You Are What They EatA sequel to Critters 2:  The Main Course from 1988, the sci-fi comedy horror film was released directly to video.  It has gained a small following due to the fact that it is the first film appearance of Leonardo DiCaprio.

critters 3 charlie macfadden don keith opper

Lucky break to get Don Keith Opper back…would have hated to lose him to another action franchise…

I watched Critters 3 when it was relatively new and “Leonardo” wasn’t a star at the time.  The movie without its star power was rather blasé and typical (aka let’s move the horror from rural to urban).  Now, the movie is fun to watch because of the Leonardo factor and to see how far he has come.

The story really drags despite being less than an hour and a half.  The story takes a lot of set-up to get the Crites to the apartment and then the action stalls with the each area of the building going into lock-down as the Critters invade.  Unlike something like Troll or even later movies like [REC], the apartment aspect isn’t used very well.  Instead of ratcheting up the tension like in a film like Alien, the confinement slows down the plot (plus, you get a swinging from a wire scene that goes on for about a third of the movie).

Leonardo DiCaprio isn’t good in the movie.  You have to be reminded that he hadn’t done much work and what he had done was pretty below average TV (aka Growing Pains was his longest run).  The rest of the cast also isn’t very inspired.  Don Keith Opper returns as Charlie and Terrence Mann has a small cameo as Ug.

critters 3 leonardo dicaprio aimee brooks

So…if there was only a door keeping me from freezing to death…would you let me on it?

The sets for the movie are cheap and like many horror movies, the power is cut early so they are rather darkly lit.  I still do like the simple and fun design of the Crites which are the real selling point of the franchise, but they still don’t have a very balanced storyline involving them.

Critters 3 is a bit odd in that it ends on a complete cliffhanger.  Unlike the classic “something has survived”, Critters 3 sets up a direct sequel by revealing that Critters are now endangered and are not permitted to be hunted.  Critters 4 was shot back-to-back with Critters 3 and Critters 4 was released directly to video in 1992.

Related Links:

Critters (1986)

Critters 2:  The Main Course (1988)

Critters 4 (1992)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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