The helpful quintet of dwarf dinosaurs from the first few PREHYSTERIA pics rear their latex heads again. This time their dull presence drags down to the cinematic tar pits a premise that would have played out better without them.
At Kings Road Country Club ex-pro-am golf champion Thomas MacGregor (Fred Willard) dwells in disgrace on an abandoned miniature golf course. Having missed the putt of his life, he now fixes carts for his venal brother "Uncle Hal" MacGregor (Bruce Weitz), proprietor of Kings Road. Thomas's duffer
daughter Ella (Whitney Anderson) is determined to become a British Open contender and frequently trespasses on Uncle Hal's greens. After one day of digging divots, she discovers the shrunken saurians, who give Thomas an idea: "Dino-Putt." The MacGregor family revamps their miniature course with a
sort of "Flintstones" motif as a diversion for bored rich kids whose parents are busy on Kings Road. The new attraction's success frustrates Uncle Hal, who schemed to acquire the property for an underhanded deal with a visiting Japanese. In a finale awfully familiar to anyone who saw CADDYSHACK,
Uncle Hal goes against Ella in a putt-putt showdown over the MacGregor legacy.
Anderson is cute as she effects golf mania right down to a Scottish accent and lovingly-framed portrait of Sean Connery. Grownups trapped into watching might be amused at fairways parodies of THE SWORD IN THE STONE, GODZILLA, and even JFK, though director Julian Breen tends to rerun every gag at
least three times. But those diminutive dinosaurs doom PREHYSTERIA! 3 to extinction. Anthropomorphized to the extent that crude puppetry techniques allow, the rubbery reptiles tie shoelaces, play charades, and generally behave like no dinosaur ever; they're just surrogates for circus chimps,
elves, friendly ghosts/aliens, leprechauns (in fact, the same production outfit did the superior LEAPIN' LEPRECHAUNS!) or any other wonderworking critters in banal children's movies, and hardly merit their painful, lingering closeups. Once the "wee beasties" are revealed, in fact, most other
characters simply ignore them.
Just as the original PREHYSTERIA grabbed attention on the direct-to-home-video market for its coincident release while JURASSIC PARK cleaned up in theaters, PREHYSTERIA! 3 uncannily anticipated a boomlet of golf-inspired pics in the mid-1990s, like Adam Sandler's HAPPY GILMORE and Kevin Costner's
TIN CUP. (Violence)
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- Released: 1995
- Rating: PG
- Review: The helpful quintet of dwarf dinosaurs from the first few PREHYSTERIA pics rear their latex heads again. This time their dull presence drags down to the cinematic tar pits a premise that would have played out better without them. At Kings Road Country Clu… (more)