The Guilty Pleasures Pile: Carnosaur 3

Science-Fiction/Action; 85 minutes; U.S.; Directed by: Jonathan Winfrey; Produced by: Roger Corman; New Horizon Home Entertainment

Actual Quality

Guilty Pleasure Quality

After the delightful abominations that were Carnosaur 1 & 2, Rodger Corman rolls out yet another dinosaur flick within the same year of the 1994 sequel, entitled Carnosaur 3. And yes, it even follows the same group of dinosaurs that were human-bred into the world in the first movie. I’m not sure how these dinosaurs kept surviving. I mean, after the nuclear blast that capped off movie #2 these dinosaurs seem to be more radiation-blast proof than Indiana Jones in that 2009 movie. And yet they’re still prone to die when hit by things like bullets and smaller explosives, again like Indiana Jones in that 2009 movie.

Oh well…

A small group of Caucasian terrorists (I have to make a distinction in light of the Taliban, who don’t make an appearance in this movie) steal some sorely guarded trucks of Uranium protected via the U.S. Military. (Nice job, Military.) The Uranium was en route to somewhere else, (does it really matter where at this point?*) which made it an easy target for terrorists dressed in black ninja suits in broad daylight. I guess the terrorists were so good that they don’t need the cover of night to camoflauge in their black suits. I mean, if they can take on the U.S. Military and win then they MUST be good.

(*Sorry for all of the intrusive parentheticals. They will appear only as often as needed in this review. Play a game and count how many times they appear in this review if it helps.)

But of course, “Uranium” must be Military code for “Dinosaur” as dinosaurs break out of the stolen trucks and eat the terrorists that kidnapped them. Seeing how bad the Military was at keeping the “Uranium” a secret from the terrorists’ knowledge, I guess it’s a good thing that the term “dinosaur” was never used on the mission. Imagine if that became public knowledge!

Some local cops come into the area where the terrorists stashed the trucks and assume that they were drug dealers, one of them saying he knows this because he saw something similar in a TV show. But the cop never gets to show off his skills as a Law & Order character before he and the other cops are chomped by the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex.

…And the viewer is left wondering how none of them saw that sooner…

Believe it or not this domino series of dinosaurs consuming prey is all build up (or filler, I can’t really tell) before the Feds can get back on the case of the missing “Uranium”. The sexy female scientist working for the Feds inform an elite group of Coast Guards that it be captured humanly and not destroyed. Okay, in all fairness the movie stopped using that code word by this point, so I guess I should too. But the Feds still don’t tell the select, elite group of Coast Guards that they’re dealing with dinosaurs.

When you're up against dinosaurs, something more than a "Have fun, play nice!" notification is needed in advanced.

Okay, I was able to understand (or at least go along with) the secrecy in every part of this trilogy up until now. But, seriously. Why won’t the Feds tell these guys that they’re dealing with dinosaurs? It’s not like it’s “Confidential” to these men since they’re gonna walk into a room not assuming the worse and make the discovery in a horrible and violent way as to what it is they are up against. In other words, IT’S NOT LIKE IT’S GONNA BE A SECRET TO THIS TEAM FOR VERY LONG! They’re being deployed on this mission for the sole purpose of capturing dinosaurs. Saying that these dinosaurs are on a “Need To Know” basis would enforce the idea that anyone deployed to capture the dinosaurs in any form would need to know, right? Didn’t it occur to anyone they would need to know that?

Oh, and that’s right. I didn’t say they were supposed to kill the dinosaurs. I said they’re supposed to capture the dinosaurs in a humane way. This is the worse government operation I’ve ever seen in motion picture fiction! How are they supposed to capture anything if they don’t know what it is they’re capturing? Also, if someone is gonna ask that her animals are humanly captured, it would help if they were all herbivores. It doesn’t help that all of these animals are vicious killing machines with an appealing gimmick up their sleeves. But if they were all herbivores, it would make for a very uninteresting movie. So let’s get on with it, shall we?

After part of the team dies (boy was that a surprise…), the head honcho of the Coast Guard group gets furious with the sexy scientist and demands he and his surviving men (the black females were the first to go on the mission; no, I’m not being mean) are briefed on these animals before the expedition goes any further.

After the paleontology lesson the Guards are teamed up with some other part of the Military (because they did such a good job shipping the cargo before) to assist them on their mission. At this point the movie completely loses any and all face it had with the characters and goes into all sorts of stupidity. One of the Military chicks decides to take on one of the Guard hunks on an arm wrestling competition while they’re inside the very dinosaur infested building setting traps for the scaly buggers.

I thought the Military was supposed to break people of these kinds of tendencies before deploying them on dangerous missions like this…

All this merely results in a slap on the wrists as the commanding officers for the two units returns and finds them lollygagging, and the two units go back to setting traps. At this point the movie finally becomes watchable from a violent dinosaur loving standpoint. Plenty of heads and arms are ripped off, and the sexy scientists even converts to dino-killing mode as she gears up for battle rather late in the game. The Raptors combat with their skills as reptiles to grow back parts of their body, and even their whole dead bodies (I’m pretty sure reptiles can’t actually do that…) as they resurrect themselves from the dead and wreak more terror on the characters. The climax is pretty cool so I’m not going to spoil it for anyone. Just watch it.

Carnosaur 3 was fun to watch, but a lot of stupidity has to be trudged through in order to get to the “good parts”. It’s defiantly the weakest of the original trilogy, mainly because it uses more re-used footage than the other two films combined.  But most of the special effect shots were new and the way it ended seemed to set everything up for an awesome fourth installment. The fourth dinosaur movie did eventually come with the 2001 film Raptors, but God, only if it actually had continued the same story line as the first three movies…

Raptors face off with the team of humane animal rights people.


About Stefan D. Byerley
Stefan D. Byerley is an independent filmmaker and freelance visual artist currently residing in North Carolina. He likes detailed storytelling, intriguing imagery, massive bloody violence, crying at the movies, and long walks in the park during the Autumn season.

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