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Trancers III: Deth Lives Reviews

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Phil H

Super Reviewer

July 5, 2011
Getting a little better after the dreadful second film yet still highly cheap and nasty with laughable everything. This time 'Deth' does have a rather neat partner in the form of a large android called 'Shark' who actually looks pretty sweet with his fish/fin mask, not brilliant makeup effects but its nice looking and different. The special ops training and fighting camp is really bad in this, some great fake looking fighting and bad stunts work a treat in making this hilarious when its not really suppose to be.

Still chasing Trancers all through time and space Thomerson is witty as ever and on top form with his tough guy persona. He still manages to make me smile despite the utter crud going on all around. I dunno why Thomerson keeps doing these but he is the main attraction for sure.

The first two films seemed to be semi serious but this third film definitely eases up and clearly everyone is having a good time making it. The whole concept seems to be leaning towards the dark humour of the 'Evil Dead' franchise in my opinion, plenty of wise cracks, visual tomfoolery and more outlandish fantasy based ideas.
May 22, 2013
Betydligt bättre än tvåan, men klart sämre än ettan. Här finns en ansats till noirfilm, och budgeten känns något högre än i den föregående filmen. Helen Hunt gör ett kort inhopp (enligt intervjuer mest för att vara schyst) och trötte Jack Deth får en respektingivande partner i rymdvarelse-robot-aktige Shark, som dock används alldeles för lite. I övrigt skjuter Jack i vanlig ordning ihjäl oskyldiga människor på löpande band, och haltar omkring i sin slitna trenchcoat. Det kom en fyra, femma och sexa (den sista utan Jack), men det är tveksamt om jag pallar att ta mig igenom dem. Möjligen om jag blir förkyld under en regnig sommarvecka.
July 7, 2007
They've got the wrong poster and the wrong cast listed here. The Trancers series is completely ridiculous. I got a little tired of it with the third film.
July 12, 2012
not as good as part 2 but i still liked it
September 28, 2009
Of all of the Trancers films that I've seen so far, Trancers 3: Deth Lives is the best directed. I noticed that the camera was a little more free moving this time around, and actually responded to what was happening on screen. Plus with the film's elaborate set designs, writer/director C. Courtney Joyner follows our cast of characters and their environments with a watchful eye that made this third entry a little livelier than the previous two installments.

Also, this was the first time I was actually impressed with Tim Thomerson as main character Jack Deth. Deth Lives gives Jack Deth a little more room to stretch his arms. And Thomerson finally feels comfortable in the role, and like the film really comes to life on screen. He was perfect with his sarcastic manner, and created a lot of great laughs in the film.

Sadly, this is the first Trancers film I wasn't won over with. The story is interesting, to say the least. The trancing technology is now being used by a small sector of the U.S. military to create super soldiers, with deadly results. Jack has been pulled back to the year 2247, only to be sent back to 2005 and try to put an end to Col. Daddy Muthuh's (Andrew Robinson) plans. It's the mixing of this story and Jack Deth's continuing journey that doesn't work so well, and the end result feels like a film that Jack Deth was added to at the last second.

The movie is a little more open minded, and added some new science fiction elements to the story. There is a robot that looks like something from a creature-feature that assists Deth on his mission. Shark (R.A. Mihailoff), as it is affectionately referred to, was a neat idea but one that was underused. You don't get to see a lot of him in action, which was a pity. This film continues Deth's trend of mindlessly shooting people, but at least it as a little more fun this time around.

Trancers 3: Deth Lives opens up decently, and has a pretty good ending. But the middle sinks badly, and drags on. While I did admire some of the elements that went into making this film, ultimately Deth Lives felt like a filler entry in this series. Pity this one didn't turn out too well, since the series has been rather fun up until this point.
September 15, 2008
When an unstoppable army of Trancers threatens to destroy civilization in the 23rd century, stranded time traveler Jack Deth (Thomerson) is ripped from the life he is attempting to build in 1992 and sent to 2005 to change history and stop the Trancers from even coming into existence in the first place. This mission is going to be trickier than Trancer hunt Jack has ever undertaken, as he discovers the origin of the Trancers can be traced to a top secret installation opeated by the United States Marine Corps.

"Trancers III" is darker in tone and it feels like it was shot on a lower budget than the first two installments of the film; we don't see the Trancers dissolve after they've been killed, for example. It's also the first installment that wasn't directed by Charles Band, but instead saw its screenwriter C. Courtney Joyner also taking on the directorial duties.

These changes could possibly have added up to an inferior film, but they didn't. "Trancers III" has a more cohereent storyline than "Trancers II" and it was the first first entry in the series that wasn't directed by Charles Band himself, and the darker tone makes it feel like the stakes are higher than they've ever been before. The only humor present in this film are Jack Deth's hardboiled detective-style wisecracks and narration but they're as sharp here as they've ever been.

While the film continues to play with the notion of tangled and confused timelines that was introduced in "Trancers II", it ultimately fails to take full advantage of these concepts, doesn't provide as strong an ending as it might have had, and even undermines the time travel rules that had established the series in the first place due to what I am certain is Charles Band's desire to keep the door open for more sequels.

The mission Jack Deth undertakes in this film is to stop the Trancers before they even become a threat in the future. I doubt I'm spoiling anything by telling you that he succeeds, but, according to what we've seen in other installments, that success should have resulted in Jack never being sent back into the past to begin with as there never would have been a Whistler for him to hunt or even a reason for Jack to be a Trancer Hunter.

The perfect ending for this film would have been if it had taken the series full circle by having Philip Deth, the man whose body Jack Deth's conciousness is actually inhabiting wake up to play out the scene where Lela and Jack first met, but this time without Jack's mind in his body. Failing that, future Trancer sequels SHOULD have dealt with why Jack's future even exists, as he should have unraveled it in 2005. They don't, however, but instead go off in a more fantasy-oriented direction, jettisoning most sci-fi elements as Jack Deth ends up in a parallel dimension where magic trumps his technological toys.

"Trancers III" should have been the end-point for the series, and I recommend that you make it so. The sequels that follow are far inferior to this one (despite being written by Peter David, author of "Howling Mad") and I think you should be left with Jack's greatest adventure as the last outing you witness, even with the imperfect ending.

Trancers III (aka "Future Cop III" and "Deth Lives")
Starring: Tim Thomerson, Melanie Smith, Andrew Robinson, Tony Pierce, Megan Ward, Helen Hunt, Stephen Macht and Dawn Ann Billings
Director: C. Courtney Joyner
April 19, 2008
This one ain't the best sequel (that honour goes to the second film) but this one is way better than 4 and 5.

Returning to fine form is Tim Thomerson as Jack Deth, the exterminator of trancers. To further understand what they are, you need not watch Trancers III then 5,2,4 and 1. Trust me, you'll be lost.

Pity that Helen Hunt packed it in after this. But she moved on to bigger and better projects. Mr. Thomerson on the other hand, returned as Jack for two further sequels.

Trancers III reminds me of RoboCop 3, because of its very dark apocalyptic tone. If you don't know, both films picture a decaying city following government take-overs.

Shark as Jack's partner was cool, but their time on screen together is limited. The new trancer lord was played by Hellraiser's Andrew Robinson, who always makes for a terrific bad guy.

Not surprisingly, Trancers III was the last film to be set in LA. Trancers 4 only briefly sees Jack Deth in LA before he left for Romania.

Kind of a cool film, if viewed as a time filler. This would've made an awesome TV series, IMO. Too bad Tim probably won't return as Deth now that Full Moon isn't the same.
March 6, 2007
Another movie I haven't seen in years. For what I can remember, Jack Deth is sent to the future to take out intelligent Trancers or something of the sort. It was slightly better then part 2 but not by much.
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