A blog about horror movies that take place during Halloween or the fall season. With posts containing movie news, trailers, official posters, fan art, poster collections, stills/screen captures, reviews, video mixtapes, short films, and vhs, dvd, blu-ray, 4K uhd covers.

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Currently Watching: THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER PART I & V (2023) on SHUDDER +Reviews

THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER (2023) and THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER PART V (2023) were originally released on VOD + Digital Platforms on May 5, 2023 by Dark Sky Films. The films began streaming on Shudder (need subscription) on April 8, 2024 and are also currently streaming on Plex (free with ads). More info, trailers, where to watch, written/video reviews and VHS/DVD releases below.

What if a lost horror franchise made during the peak of the slasher genre was unearthed today, but only two of the films could be restored? Filmmaker Jay Burleson imagined just that with THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER: PART V and THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER: PART I, a double feature of terror.

Aiming to recreate the by-gone video store days when horror fans might have had to watch a franchise out of order, the filmmakers intended for viewers to start with Part V and then go back to Part I. So Part V is technically the second entry in the slasher series– there are no Parts II, III, or IV- but you can check this angelfire fansite for short outlines describing the other unfilmed parts of the franchise, including part VI which might get made depending on the success of Parts V and I release.

The Filmmakers also created a “History” of The Third Saturday in October Franchise explained below:

The long lost slasher franchise THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER is back!

Red Corpses LLC and Sleep Creature LLC are proud to announce they have partnered with Dark Sky Films to restore and release two entries in the long running slasher saga.

The series began in 1979 as a quick cash-in on John Carpenter’s HALLOWEEN. Series producer Frank Crafts, an Alabama native, believed he had a great idea for a horror film with Southern roots – what if HALLOWEEN were set in the South, and instead of a traditional holiday, it centered around a Southern institution: college football. Thus, THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER was born, a small-town slasher film revolving around a group of friends watching an annual football match between the Alabama-Mobile Seahawks and the Tennessee A&M Commonwealth. Unfortunately for them, an unstoppable killer named Jakkariah Harding shows up to murder them one by one.

The original film garnered little national attention but birthed multiple low-rent sequels throughout the 1980s before the franchise flamed out when the trashy fourth installment ran the series completely off the rails. Borrowing a page from the HALLOWEEN playbook, Crafts doubled down and attempted to resurrect the saga with an unrelated spin-off in 1990, but the series returned to the Jakkariah Harding storyline in 1994, utilizing a comedic approach to hopefully win back its audience.

The series officially ended in 2000 with PART VI: THE LAST THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER, but the series ultimately fell victim to what producer Ian Cunningham refers to as “The Third Saturday Curse”, as the films slowly vanished off the face of the earth after a series of unfortunate events, including internal feuding, bankruptcy, a warehouse fire, and cheap VHS manufacturing leading to unplayable tapes.

With the assistance of Dark Sky Films, the creators of the saga have unearthed two of their lost films: the original offering from 1979, and the 1994 sequel THE THIRD SATURDAY IN OCTOBER PART V.

Website, Fansite and Social Media links:

The Third Saturday in October Part I synopsis, trailer, kill count, where to watch:

When a psycho goes on a murderous rampage after surviving a botched execution, only two survivors of his initial attack can stop him.

Written & Directed by Jay Burleson, Produced by Frank Crafts, Lauren Musgrove & Ian J. Cunningham, and stars Darius Willis, K.J. Baker, Allison Shrum, Lew Temple, Antonio Woodruff, Casey Aud, Kate Edmonds, Veanna Black.


Kill Count:

WHERE TO WATCH The Third Saturday in October (2023):

The Third Saturday in October Part V synopsis, trailer, kill count, where to watch:

Follows a implacable killer as he stalks and butchers the occupants of houses across the stretch of one lone country road while the residents prepare to watch a yearly college-football bout.

Written & Directed by Jay Burleson, Produced by Frank Crafts & Ian J. Cunningham, and stars Kansas Bowling, Poppy Cunningham, Taylor Smith, Bart Hyatt, Autumnn Jaide, Tom Hagale, Parker Love Bowling.


Kill Count:

WHERE TO WATCH The Third Saturday in October Part V (2023):

Jack-O's Review:

"I think I love the made up history of the films and the what looks like a fan made angelfire website with descriptions of the other films in the franchise more so than I actually liked the films. I thought the films looked great, like they were actually shot in 1979 and 1994 and it really felt like it was Halloweentime with all the decorations, jack o lanterns and fall leaves. The kills/gore effects in both films were good but Part V just did them better and had more laughs for me. I'd give Part V ★★★ good and Part I ★★ fair. If they ever make a Part VI I would definitely revisit the first two films and have a triple feature night."

More Reviews:

... (The Third Saturday in October is) a retro-styled slasher parody meant to be viewed after its follow-up, Part V (our review ★★★½). While more effective in its pursuit of period recreation and dedication to the tropes... The slasher homage series... works best as a double feature, with the overlap between them and the respective period aesthetics creating a unique cinematic experiment. It’s impressive what Writer/Director Jay Burleson’s achieved and recreated, likely with so little when viewed as two pieces of a whole. The Third Saturday in October may not be nearly as entertaining as Part V, but it is a fascinating exercise in nostalgia. ★★½ Bloody-Disgusting.com

"Both of The Third Saturday in October films are rather generic. Nothing about either installment sets them apart from the glut of throwback efforts that have similarly attempted to recreate a bygone era... the characters are still underdeveloped... Everyone exists as a hollow caricature and the audience is left without a standout player to get behind... Both films do a sufficient job of recreating the eras in which they unfold. But Part I does a particularly effective job of reimagining the late ‘70s. The color grading and wardrobe and hairstyles look very much like a product of that time period." ★½ DreadCentral.com

"I loved the (first film's) late 70s look and eye for detail, I found the overall film to be a slow burner with the last 20 minutes or so being the film’s saving grace. The first film spent too much time building the back story... This left the bloodshed and slasher hijinks in the backseat so to speak. However, Part V gets straight to it. It’s follows the traditional slasher formula... delivers some bloody and enjoyable deaths... and doesn't disappoint. While I don’t like the first film I highly recommend Part V... a fantastic slasher that looks like it was made during the 80s." ★★★½ HorrorSociety.com

"... both “Third Saturday'' films feel more like Troma films by way of Funny or Die than actual slashers. There's still a good amount of blood spray (in Part V) that Burleson gleefully lights just like the direct-to-video films of the early 90’s. Part I (“the original”) is less subtle, but man does it revel in some good 70’s cheesiness. This entry has more John Carpenter references than a Robert Rodriguez trivia night... Watching both back-to-back would be an ideal viewing experience, though I’m honestly not sure why they recommended watching V before I. While both films try a bit too hard at times, they’re fun, handcrafted throwbacks to the times of saying “dammit, part VI is out AGAIN!?” while the video store clerk shrugs at you. Here’s hoping Burleson and company get to make that part 6." MacabreDaily.com

"...somehow Jay Burleson has done the seeming impossible in making two new movies, filmed back-to-back and released simultaneously, that masquerade as long lost entries in a forgotten slasher series; one the gritty, post-Halloween original installment and the other a goofy, mid-90s fourth sequel, complete with all the period signifiers and tropes of the eras in which they were made... These movies feel like they’re capable of becoming a bona fide mini phenomenon amongst die-hard horror fans and I can’t wait to see what weird roads they go down next." ★★★★ BloodyGoodHorror.com

"I am fascinated by the project of this double feature. Although, this fascination has more to do with means of production than with the films themselves... these are faithful recreations of particular moments of cheap knockoff horror and opportunistic sequels... But if we take these films at face value, as horror films, they are only entertaining to a certain degree. The “first” film, in particular, drags constantly and is forever indebted to the most insufferable group of hippie stoners. The “fifth” film fares a bit better with its characters, who fit into neat archetypes (as is the case with many a 1990s horror movie). But this film, in true sequel fashion, adds more kills with less oomph. While the experimentation with form is great, the films themselves are not wholly great in their own right." Grade: B CineFilesReviews.com

"Part V is a well-conceived and well-executed fictional restoration of a gone but not forgotten cult horror movie that starts strong but finishes weak... Overall, I found Part I to be a significant improvement, and much better movie than Part V. Interestingly enough, I think the viewing experience of watching Part V first, actually enhanced watching Part I. Even though Part I is much more subdued than its predecessor, it still has the comedic and tonal elements of Part V that made Part V an enjoyable experience overall, by adding that much needed dose of seriousness, as well as characters with purpose." Part V Rating: 4.5/10 - Part I Rating: 6/10 WickedHorror.com

YouTube Reviews:

Orders of VHS releases can be made through the official website store. You can get a standalone The Third Saturday in October VHS, a standalone The Third Saturday in October Part V VHS, a double feature VHS, or a bundle with the double feature VHS and a copy of the Australian DVD.

Double Feature VHS cover:

Part I VHS cover:

Part V VHS cover:

Double Feature DVD front cover:

Official Posters:

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