Slap Shot 3 (2008) Review

Alright, I know this isn’t based in video games at all, and that’s the type of movie we’ve been doing. I’m making a one-time exception here because the NHL is apparently going to lock out with its cock out this season, and also because I watched all 3 Slap Shot movies over the weekend while I was laid up with a nasty cold, and it seems nobody on Earth has bothered to review this 3rd installment. So consider this a public service. Pretend it’s Blades of Steel: The Movie if you feel the need.

If you’re not into hockey you’re probably not familiar with this franchise. The original 1977 movie starred Paul Newman (who later said it was his favorite role of his career) as the captain of a struggling AHL (the NHL’s “minor league”) franchise that was battling financial difficulties while its cast of misfits tried to break into NHL careers. Hockey has always had a culture of crassness and crudeness that is unique from other sports, and the movie was a comedy that did a great job of parodying that, making it beloved to a cult following. Here’s an example of the kind of culture I’m talking about:

If you can make allowances for the outdated gender/sexuality insults, it’s a hilarious old time. It’s a very good comedy on its own right, without having to be into hockey to enjoy it, and I reccomend it to everyone.

Anyway, the movie didn’t get a sequel until 2001, and it utterly bombed. I don’t reccomend that one to anyone, it’s basicall Stephen Baldwin wandering around looking mildly drunk with occasional hockey in the background. Then there was this direct-to-video follow-up in 2008, released with almost no fanfare whatsoever.

Again, to give you a little snippet of what the original Slap Shot was like:

By contrast, this is what Slap Shot 3 is like:

Slap Shot 2 was an awful movie, but it wasn’t for lack of the profanity, crassness and sexual innuendo of the original; it was simply due to bad writing and a deficient sense of comedy. Slap Shot 3 has become exactly what the second movie satirized; a polished corporate turd purchased by a “family-friendly” entertainment company and turned into a watered-down PG movie.

I’m sure whoever was involved with creating and greenlighting this had zero sense of irony in what they were doing; they were just thinking they could make some money off of a slapped-together Mighty Ducks clone “sanitized” for a “general audience”, and that the fanbase of the original was too piddly at this point to even be concerned with. Set any character from the first movie in front of this picture, however, and I guarantee you they’d call it a “fuckin’ travesty” in that special Canook tone.

The participation of the Hansons in this one pretty much sum up what it’s all about; in the original two movies they cussed constantly and beat the shit out of everyone on the ice, in this one they’ve become pacifist hippie gurus and the worst thing you hear over the course of the entire movie is a “son of a bitch” at one point. These guys have to be pushing 50 by now if they aren’t there already, and I don’t think they have much of a career outside of being the Hansons, so securing their involvement probably wasn’t that hard. They can’t even get anyone from the Baldwin bomb to return; the cast is basically Leslie Nielsen in a minor role and a bunch of budget versions of Zac Efron. The whole time Leslie Nielsen has this look of “Jesus, the things you have to do for a paycheck when you’re 100” on his face. Which is probably the best part of the movie.

Slap Shot 3 was produced by Unity Pictures, who apparently also produce Disney Channel movies; that’s basically what you can expect. 0/5, fuckin’ travesty. Here’s some more original Slap Shot to wash the taste out of your mouth.

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