Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest
|Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest|
|Directed by||James D. R. Hickox|
|Written by||Dode B. Levenson|
|Music by||Daniel Licht|
|Edited by||Chris Peppe|
Park Avenue Productions
Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest is a 1995 American horror film, directed by James D. R. Hickox, and starring Daniel Cerny, Jim Metzler, Nancy Grahn, and Mari Morrow. It is the third film in the Children of the Corn series, and focuses on two mysterious brothers who are adopted from rural Nebraska and brought to Chicago; a chain of deadly occurrences surrounding the family follows, involving a cult in which the younger brother is a follower. Children of the Corn III marked the film debuts of Nicholas Brendon, Ivana Miličević and Charlize Theron.
Eli and Joshua are being taken into foster care with William and Amanda Porter of Chicago after the death of their father, who was killed by Eli. The two boys do not mix well with a home in modern Chicago; their formal, Amish-like clothes from Gatlin and Eli's fire-and-brimstone prayer at dinner, as well as his bringing a suitcase full of corn to Chicago, strike their new parents and neighbors as unusual. On his first night in Chicago, after everyone else has gone to sleep, Eli quietly leaves the Porter's house for an empty factory on the other side of a nearby cornfield. Taking with him the suitcase of corn, Eli prays to "He Who Walks Behind the Rows" and plants corn seeds on the grounds of the factory, causing rows of corn to appear almost instantly.
The next day, at their first day in school, Eli nearly gets into a fight with T-Loc, a student in Joshua's grade, and harshly criticizes Joshua for playing basketball with some of the other students. Disgusted with the lifestyle being lived by modern children, Eli decides to bring He Who Walks Behind the Rows to Chicago, which soon kills a homeless man who finds the cornfield. Joshua starts spending less time with Eli and makes friends with neighbors Maria and Malcolm.
The social worker who brought Eli and Joshua to the Porters discovers that Eli was adopted originally from Gatlin, Nebraska (the town from the first film). Furthermore, Eli has not aged since 1964. She tries to warn the Porters, but she is quickly burned alive by Eli. Amanda begins to notice Eli's strange mannerisms and when she tries to cut down his cornfield it attacks her. She attempts to escape, but trips on a pole and her head is impaled on a broken pipe, killing her instantly. William finds the cornfield Eli has planted and realizes that with its seemingly perfect nature invulnerable to disease, able to grow out of season and in the worst of soil, it could be a highly marketable product. Despite the death of his wife, which was arranged by Eli, William finds backers and looks forward to the massive profits Eli's strain of corn will bring.
Eli neglects to inform his foster father of another property the corn possesses — it is able to turn children who eat it into followers of "He Who Walks Behind the Rows". Eli begins to decisively sway the students of his high school towards his beliefs, turning them against the principal and directing them to abandon such previously-typical activities as basketball. The principal, alarmed at Eli's converting the students, attempts to inform other staff, but they do not believe him, as Eli's efforts have had another effect: They have restored order at the school to a degree few thought possible.
By the time Joshua realizes the full truth, Eli has killed both of their foster parents, the school principal, Malcolm and Maria's parents, and now has full control of his fellow students. Confronting him, Joshua reveals that he has gone back to Gatlin and found the bible of "He Who Walks Behind the Rows" (which resulted in Malcolm's death), a book that Eli holds sacred and, together with his own body, can survive indefinitely if one is intact. Eli roars, "Give me the book!" and charges. Joshua throws the book down, and as Eli scrambles to pick it up Joshua stabs Eli and the book with a sickle, destroying both.
After Eli dies, "He Who Walks Behind the Rows" rises from the cornfield, revealed to be a grotesque monster with several tentacles. He Who Walks Behind The Rows kills several of Eli's followers (who have snapped out of Eli's control) in horrific ways, including T-Loc. After a brief struggle, Joshua uses the sickle to repeatedly stab at the monster's lower body, which resembles a large tree root sticking out of the ground. "He Who Walks Behind the Rows" collapses and dies.
As the film closes, the first shipment of Eli's corn arrives in Germany, the beginning of shipments all over the world.
- Daniel Cerny as Eli
- Ron Melendez as Joshua
- Michael Ensign as Father Frank Nolan
- Jon Clair as Malcolm Elkman
- Mari Morrow as Maria Elkman
- Duke Stroud as Earl
- Rance Howard as Employer
- Brian Peck as Jake Witman
- Nancy Lee Grahn as Amanda Porter
- Jim Metzler as William Porter
- Garvin Funches as T-Loc
- Yvette Freeman as Samantha
- Charlize Theron as Eli's follower (uncredited)
- Ivana Miličević as Eli's follower/Acolyte
- Nicholas Brendon as Basketball Player One
Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest was the first film in the series made under Dimension Films and Miramax Films, who purchased the rights to the series and distributed the seven sequels to the original two films. It was also the first film in the series to be released direct-to-video, arriving at U.S. video stores on September 12, 1995.
J.R. Taylor of Entertainment Weekly gave the film a B-rating, writing: "This latest installment — the best of the Stephen King-derived series — offers some unexpected plot developments and surprisingly chilling gore. But fear not, it's unlikely Urban Harvest will cause nightmares, due to its hilariously inept climax. When the humongous corn creature shakes a screaming girl in its goo paws, the victim looks suspiciously like a Barbie doll." TV Guide awarded the film two out of five stars, praising the performances, and adding: "Against the odds, this horror series (initially based on a Stephen King short story) has actually improved over time to the point where this third installment is a creditable if far-fetched chiller."
- Browning, Mark (2011). Stephen King on the Small Screen. Intellect Ltd. pp. 65–67. ISBN 978-1841504124.
- "IMDb Box Office/Business". Retrieved December 28, 2007.
- "IMDb Locations". Retrieved December 28, 2007.
- Taylor, J.R. (September 12, 1995). "Video Review: 'Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 4, 2018.
- "Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest". TV Guide. Retrieved April 4, 2018.