Death Race 3: Inferno
Carl Lucas, the original Frankenstein, has become immensely popular thanks to Death Race and millions of dollars are being spent on Frankenstein merchandising. This, however, doesn’t keep the Weyland Corporation from running into problems when billionaire Niles York sets his eye to the event. He takes over and decides to go global, making Death Race even bigger than it already was.
Lucas doesn’t care much about this as he’s already won four races and only needs one more victory in order to gain his freedom. At least, that’s what he thought as York has completely different plans.
The deal Lucas had with Weyland gets terminated and York makes it very clear that “Frankenstein” won’t win a fifth race. After all, without Frankenstein Death Race would become a lot less popular and the revenues would drop significantly. York as such proposes a new deal: Lucas doesn’t win any further races but he and his team do get to live. Frankenstein wouldn’t be Frankenstein if he didn’t have a plan in the back of his mind to work against York, even if the next Death Race even is held in South Africa where they have to race in the desert.
Death Race: Inferno is the third part in the Death Race franchise, and if we take into account the original movie from 1975 (Death Race 2000 with Sylvester Stallone and David Carrdine) even number four. All to often we see with sequels that the quality goes down as the number goes up and sadly enough this is also the case with Inferno.
The movie is set between parts 1 and 2 and does have a story that has some potential but the makers succeeded in completely screwing things up. The dialogues are laughable and almost sound as if they’re being read from paper, the action is displayed even more hectic than in a Michael Bay movie, and the cast (except for Danny Trejo, Vingh Rhames and Luke Goss) should best look for another job as their work is beneath all standards. We would almost even dare to say that we ourselves would do better!
And then we haven’t even talked about the holes in the script which would make a cheese jealous. We for instance are still wondering what the purpose was to have the star of Death Race, Carl “Frankenstein” Lucas, set seperately in a cubicle that looks more like a dirty well than a prison cell. The “coolness” factor of standing with your feet in water kinda eludes us.
Death Race 2000 was fun pulp. Death Race with Jason Statham was a decent reboot and Death Race 2 was a bit less but managed to make up near the end and save its honor. This Death Race: Inferno, however, burns up faster than a match that gets lit with a flame thrower.
Where Universal disappoints with the quality of the movie, they somewhat make up with the quality of the transfer. The image isn’t perfect, with some artefacts here and there as well as some softer scenes (especially inside the cars) and an overall “dirty” look that was a choice of the makers. All in all for this type of direct-to-DVD releases the quality isn’t actually so bad though.
The sound on the other hand is plain good. The dialogues constantly are brought forward very well and this while all speakers are going at it at full force. And with full force we mean FULL force. The effects and music get thrown into your living room and the least you can say is that the soundtrack is intense. Also the subwoofer joins the party so if you want to blow your friends away with your surround system you can easily put Death Race: Inferno in your player. The quality of the sound is so good we’ve given this release one point more than we normally would have.
Regisseur Roel Reine starts the extras with an audio commentary track in which he tells us how proud he is with his work (even if it’s kinda crap) after which you can look at an 11 minute promotional Making Of. More fun is the extra regarding Danny Trejo’s character Goldberg, even if this only lasts 5 minutes. Also present: : deleted scenes, alternative (and better) opening scene, and a short behind the scenes look at the making of the racing scenes.