Basket Case 3: The Progeny (1992)

basketcase3-coverThanks a lot to Frank Henenlotter for only making three “Basket Case” movies. I really couldn’t mentally handle eight or nine movies about Belial and his life with his moronic brother Duane. These two buffoons have to be the most non-threatening horror figures since Chucky. Duane went from a tortured soul to a goofy sidekick in three films, while Belial started life as a rabid monster incapable of speak to a daddy expecting children. After diddling fellow freak Eve in “Basket Case 2,” Belial unwittingly knocked her up, and now is expecting babies. Duane, after killing cardboard cut out Susan, and involuntarily stitching Belial back to him, has been locked up in a padded cell left to consider what he’s done.

Now released, he’s shocked and jealous to discover Belial’s the normal one, now a potential family man and accepted among his freaks. Duane is the monster looking for a place in the world, and can’t seem to find one. As with the first two movies, writer Frank Henenlotter doesn’t seem to have enough story to fit ninety minutes total, so he pads the film with a lot of filler. The first five minutes recall “Basket Case 2,” there’s another recollection of the awful flashback from “Basket Case,” an extended sequence involving the freaks celebrating the birth of Eve’s babies, and Grannie Ruth even has a musical number with the freaks. Along the way to a new house for the birth of freak Eve’s children, the band of monsters meet a demented town Sheriff and his equally demented daughter.

They’re about as poorly developed as everyone in the trilogy, with intentions that are fuzzy and never fully realized. Why exactly do they want the babies? The daughter is also given a sadist S&M angle that never adds anything but gratuitous nudity and a pointless scene involving sexual tension, and the rest is Belial’s attempts to rescue his children, all of whom are being held captive for reasons never fully clarified. The final half hour of the film involves more ridiculous attempts at comedy including a funeral, badly coordinated special effects, and a romp in a fast food restaurant that really adds nothing to the film at all. “Basket Case 3” is a waste of time, but that’s what I expected, so at least I wasn’t disappointed. A typical entry in to the disasterpiece trilogy of “Basket Case,” Henenlotter ends his story on a thud with a third film that fully embraces the comedy aspects of Belial’s journey with the same half-assed writing as always.