Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Forgotten Sequels: It's Alive III- Island of the Alive

A Film so forgotten that even I forgot to get around to reviewing it!  Today's Film is It's Alive III: Island of the Alive, the final part in the Series (until the Remake).  In the previous Films, we saw the birth of the first 'monster baby' and its killing spree.  In Part 2, we saw a trio of 'monster babies' born and the follow-up to the public response.  In this one, we will see a much clearer sign of how society has reacted to the rash of random 'monster babies' being born to unsuspecting families.  The focal point is Michael Moriarty, a regular of Larry Cohen Films.  He tried to avoid an Aztec God, tried to investigate the mysterious 'Stuff',' battled some returning Vampires and finally became a killer himself- all in Larry Cohen Films.  While he has a great Resume, it is still a shame that he hasn't done more, especially considering how good he is in this Film.  He's the dad of the most recent 'monster baby' and he is fighting for their rights.  Should they be killed on sight?  Should they be allowed to live?  This Film handles this issue- and some not so subtle AIDS metaphors- and more.  Does it deserve better than to be so forgotten?  To find out, read on...
In the Cold Open, a baby is born in a Cab...but it is a 'monster baby' and is shot on sight by a Cop!
Following that, Moriarty is in a Courtroom fighting for his 'monster' son's life.  They try to get him to act scared of it, proving that it is a threat.  He proves otherwise and makes a compelling speech, leading the Judge to order the living babies taken to a remote island.
He tracks down his ex-wife (who fled after the birth)- played by Karen Black- and finds her unwilling to meet the kid.

He later hooks up with a lady at the Pier, who freaks out when she finds out his identity.  She thinks that he can infect her with whatever causes the 'monster babies' to be born.  Subtle?
The babies end up on the titular Island and settle in, but only after they kill a bunch of folks that land there.  Housewarming party, I guess.
In the ensuing 5 years, Moriarty has a book written about his case without his permission, while the Story dies down (with no murders or births).  He turns into the most sarcastic/sardonic person possibly ever- even making 'monster baby' jokes to people at a Party.

He also jokes about how people 'wouldn't want me handling their food.'  Too subtle?
He is taken out of his slump by an offer to go to the titular Island and try to reconnect with/study them.  Blurry Vision is back!
The group on the island- save for Moriarty- are killed and the boat is taken for a trip back to the mainland.  We learn that the creatures can reproduce in 5 years and apparently have telepathy.

They eventually dump Moriarty and he ends up in Cuba.  Awk-ward.
They both make it back as Moriarty's 'monster toddler' is after Black as well, with his spawn in tow.
The Cops kill all of the 'monster toddlers' (after some other killings), but the reunited couple of Black and Moriarty get away with their, well, 'monster grandson.'  The End.
Honestly, this one is kind of my favorite.  Is it weird to like the third film in a series more than the rest?  You could cite The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, I suppose.  You couldn't, in contrast, cite Jaw-s 3D.  It certainly wouldn't be Films like Superman III, Children of the Corn III or The Scorpion King 3.  Hell, even in a big Series like Star Wars, the most divisive of the original Trilogy is The Return of the Jedi.  In spite of that, this one is the most fun and crazy of the three Films.  I honestly don't think that there is a *bad* Film in the Trilogy either though.  This one benefits from two previous Films to build up the ideas and just let them play.  You get no twist and quirks to the mythos (as it were) like seeing them grown up (a bit) and giving them new powers.  Does it make sense?  Not really.  To be fair, they don't lay all of this out in a scientific/serious way either, so it isn't like introducing something like, say, midichlorians.  Why are there 'monster babies' being born?  Dunno.  Why are they born to certain people?  Dunno.  They just are and that's alright.  Moriarty is the real Star here, playing a guy who just kind of lashes out at society for treating like they do, but also managing to stay likable.  He has a reason for his behavior and not everyone hates him for it.  If he was just this jerk that nobody liked, I couldn't root for him.  He covers all of the emotional bases here, which is a sight to see.  If you like movies like this, you really need to track this down.  Can we get a nice, new release of this Trilogy from someone like Anchor Bay?  Thanks.  In the meantime, enjoy this side-by-side comparison of this Film to a far worse one...
Next up, I tackle the 2008 Remake.  Will it hold up like Cohen's Films or just be 'another terrible Horror Remake?'  Stay tuned...

No comments:

Post a Comment