Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III

1993

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III (1993)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: It's a case of one sequel too many for the heroes in a half shell, with a tired time-travel plot gimmick failing to save the franchise from rapidly diminishing returns.

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Movie Info

This third film in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series finds the half-shelled ninjas traveling back in time to 17th-century Japan in order to save April O'Neil (Paige Turco). Once there, they also use their skills to help a rebel army battle an evil leader. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

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Cast

Elias Koteas
as Casey Jones/Whit Whitley
Paige Turco
as April O'Neil
Stuart Wilson
as Captain Dirk Walker
Sab Shimono
as Lord Norinaga
Vivian Wu
as Mitsu
Mark Caso
as Leonardo
Henry Hayshi
as Kenshin
Matt Hill
as Raphael
Jim Raposa
as Donatello
David Fraser
as Michaelangelo
Mak Takano
as Benkei
Steven Getson Akahoshi
as 2nd Honor Guard
Kent Kim
as 3rd Honor Guard
Ken Kensei
as 4th Honor Guard
Tad Horino
as Grandfather
Glen Chin
as Jailer
Koichi Sakamoto
as Young Priest
Yeon Kim
as Blacksmith
James Murray
as Splinter
Brian Tochi
as Leonardo
Robbie Rist
as Michaelangelo
Tim Kelleher
as Raphael
Corey Feldman
as Donatello
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News & Interviews for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III

Critic Reviews for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (7)

Less amateurish than the 1990 original, less embarrassing than the 1991 sequel (with its mind-boggling Vanilla Ice ninja-rap number), this may be the easiest installment in the series for parents to sit through.

Aug 6, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The oversized terrapins are characteristically flip as they backflip through an unnecessarily muddled plot.

Aug 6, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

A decided case of diminishing returns.

Jul 23, 2009
Variety
Top Critic

The wisecracks have been cut back, and where once the Ninjas' dude-speak was original (influencing, for example, Wayne's World) it's now merely imitative.

Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

The Turtles themselves are better-natured than ever, and even nicely mellowed.

May 20, 2003

The first film was bad, the second worse, and the third almost unbearable.

Jan 1, 2000 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III

Here's where they completely flew off the wagon with this. Not only is the plot completely a gimmick and not worth the charm of the characters, but it lost the fun and replaced it with bad one liners and too much goofiness. A lack of ideas is evident from the get go. It's just not fun at all and does not explore what made the TMNT characters so popular. They also changed the puppets and they were not as good as the originals from the first two. Not sure what happened there. This one is not worth the time, but if you already found the others not fun than this is not tolerable.

Josh Lewis
Josh Lewis

Super Reviewer

The third film of this trilogy plummets to an all new low. With worse humour and no explanation for returning characters, the set-up for the film is terrible before the story even kicks in. After April O'Neil is accidentally transported back to 1603, the Turtles must travel through time in order to fight Ninja Warrior's and Samurai to save her. The plot is hilarious in itself already, but when you add it to an Ninja Turtles film, it shits on the source material in every way and makes the first two films look worse for no reason. There was no true reason that this film had to be made. Besides the costumes of the turtles and few nice fight moves, the film falls flat on it's face in script, acting, and jokes. "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3" is a pile of crap that deserves to stay down in the sewers.

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

Stuard Gillard takes the turtles to ancient Japan in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III.

Seemingly one of the most ideal situations for the turtles to showcase their martial arts skills, ends up a 90 minute less than stellar production. The time travel concept is a nice twist, but is never fully delved into. The rest of the story is mildly amusing.

The martial arts choreography lacks, although Donatello seems to end up with a lot of the good stuff. As for the animatronics, it is a step back. The costumes are too generic and the mouth movements disappoint when it comes to word matching.

The voices of the turtles are acceptable. Paige Turco tends to get lost in the shuffle. Elias Koteas proves himself as 2 characters, even though the one that matters is highly under utilized. Vivian Wu is a beauty on screen.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III has a bunch of letdowns, but manages to still be a watchable flick. Cowabunga dudes!

JY Skacto
JY Skacto

Super Reviewer

½

The long awaited third sequel...well sorta, after the surprisingly popular half decent first film and the fun arcade fighter-like sequel, the third film limped along. Obviously trying for a fresh look and idea the Turtles find themselves being zapped back in time to feudal Japan mainly to capitalize on their martial arts background. The film was also kinda known as 'Turtles in Time' which was the title of the second scrolling beat 'em up for the SNES fighter back in 92. To be honest I can see why they would make this move story wise, the Turtles do have that Eastern mythology to them so naturally they would fit well in the land of the rising sun. Its basically all about swapping places in time, the Turtles must travel back in time and exchange places with some elite warriors to save 'April' who accidentally got swapped with a Prince whose father is a Shogun (I think). So what we end up having is a nice lighthearted out of time culture shock routine for both the Turtles in ancient Japan and the Prince and his warriors in present day New York. So what can you expect? well its pretty clear really, there are lots of hokey, silly, childish fight sequences where the four heroes battle Japanese warriors of various kinds. Lots of visual cartoonish humour, prat falls, rude jokes and talk of pizza. On the flip side back in New York we see the out of time strangers coming to grips with TV, pizza, modern music, night clubs, bars, drink etc...its all very cliched, very cheesy, very hammy and massively predictable but its suppose to be. The visuals still look nice if you ask me, nothing special, feudal Japan is realised well with lots of hilly rocky green terrain and a nice fortress set. All the extras look fine in their traditional outfits accompanied by traditional weaponry, they all speak Japanese (no subs) and they all take their roles seriously enough to make the ride enjoyable. Sab Shimono as 'Lord Norinaga' looks great in his role and gives a decent performance, easily the best, he actually gives the whole thing a much needed boost of realism. The Turtles don't quite look as good as the previous two films, Henson's boys aren't behind the magic this time and you can tell but its still OK (they look quite good in their samurai armour). Splinter still looks the same which is good and its nice to see Koteas back as 'Casey Jones' albeit in a minor background role. Not as good as the first two films but I still enjoyed this to a degree. Its meant for kids in every way and is in no way suppose to be anything remotely serious of course. Its still heavily based around the cartoon series which isn't a bad thing but I just feel had they used 'Shredder' 'Krang' 'Bebop' and 'Rocksteady' as the villains, still using the feudal Japan setting, we could have had a much better film. The whole trilogy really missed Krang, Bebop and Rocksteady, all three films are a nice adaptation of the cartoon series and don't disappoint in all honesty. Sure they get more childish one by one but they still work both visually and simply for fun. For what they are, the approach and style of the franchise, they are perfect, perfect pop culture of the early 90's.

Phil Hubbs
Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer

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