The NeverEnding Story III: Escape from Fantasia (also known as: The NeverEnding Story III: Return to Fantasia) is a 1994 English-language German-American film, the second and final sequel to the fantasy film The NeverEnding Story (following the first sequel, The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter). It starred Jason James Richter as Bastian Balthazar Bux, and Jack Black in one of his early roles as the school bully, Slip. This film primarily used the characters from Michael Ende's novel The Neverending Story (1979), but introduced a new storyline. It is an international coproduction between the United States and Germany.
The special creature effects were provided by Jim Henson's Creature Shop. The film has no connection to the source material of the book beyond the usage of characters from it.
Plot[edit | edit source]
In a prologue, the Old Man of Wandering Mountain reads from a large book, begins to record a prophecy of a day when "The Nasty" will arrive in Fantasia, and describes the savior of "Extraordinary Courage".
Bastian Balthazar Bux has grown older, and his father Barney has married a woman named Jane, and moved into her house in a new neighborhood. Jane's daughter Nicole is displeased at having a new family. Bastian has also started high school, where he has become a victim of the Nasties, a quintet of bullies led by Slip. Bastian arranges for them to be expelled with the help of the janitor after the Nasties trap him in the boiler room.
He later flees to the library, where he is surprised to find Carl Conrad Coreander and the Neverending Story. The Nasties locate him, but he uses the book to escape to Fantasia, where he is reunited with Falkor, Engywook and Urgl. On Earth, the Nasties find the Neverending Story and use it to bombard Fantasia with fireballs and a storm. With wooden Bark Troll, Bastian and his friends head for the Wandering Mountains to speak with the Childlike Empress, who asks Bastian to find the Neverending Story using the Auryn. Falkor, Barky, the gnomes, and Rockbiter's son, Junior, help him, but a "wish overload" scatters them all across Earth, where Barky ends up in a conifer forest, Falkor saves Junior from falling to his death near Mount Rushmore, and the gnomes arrive in Nome, Alaska. Bastian locates Falkor and Junior, and Falkor flies off to find the others while Junior stays at Bastian's house. Rockbiter sadly informs his wife that Junior is gone, and the Nasties provoke them to quarrel.
Nicole takes the Auryn from Bastian's room, discovers its wishing abilities, and takes it on a shopping trip to the local mall. Bark Troll arrives at Bastian's house disguised as a garden plant, while the Gnomes are mailed to him in a box. The reunited group go in search of Nicole, but the Nasties find the Auryn first, whereupon giant crustacean creatures appear in Fantasia to kill the Empress and her advisors. Everyone in the mall turns evil, including Mr. Coreander and Bastian and Nicole’s parents. Bastian is struck by lightning, and begins to succumb to the wills of the Nasties, but Nicole saves him, and Bastian recovers the Auryn and the book in a fight. The Fantasians return to Fantasia, which is restored to its former magnificence. Bastian and Nicole manage to keep their parents from divorcing, and Junior is reunited with his parents. Nicole and Bastian return to school the next day and find that Bastian has changed Slip and the Nasties into friendly classmates, and Bastian returns the Neverending Story to Mr. Coreander.
Cast[edit | edit source]
- Jason James Richter as Bastian Balthazar Bux
- Melody Kay as Nicole Baxter, Bastian's stepsister
- Jack Black as Slip ("The Nasty"), the leader of the Nasties
- Freddie Jones as Carl Conrad Coreander, a former local librarian; Old Man of Wandering Mountain
- Julie Cox as The Childlike Empress
- Moya Brady as Urgl
- Tony Robinson as Engywook
- Tracey Ellis as Jane Bux, Bastian's stepmother
- Kevin McNulty as Barney Bux, Bastian's father
- Frederick Warder as Mr. Rockbiter Sr.
- William Todd-Jones as Mrs. Rockbiter
- Dave Forman as Mr. Rockbiter Jr.
- Gordon Robertson as Falkor
- Kaefan Shaw as Bark Troll
- Mark Acheson as the Janitor
- Ryan Bollman as Dog, a member of the Nasties
- Carole Finn as Marcia/Mookie, a member of the Nasties and Slip's girlfriend
- Nicole Parker as Coil, a member of the Nasties
- Adrien Dorval as Rage, a member of the Nasties
Voices[edit | edit source]
- William Hootkins as Bark Troll; Falkor
- Mac McDonald as Mrs. Rockbiter
- Gary Martin as Rockbiter; Mr. Rockchewer; Junior Rockchewer
Soundtrack[edit | edit source]
|Music From & Inspired By The Neverending Story III: Here Come The Fantasians|
|1.||"The Neverending Story"||Real Im-Pact||3:36|
|2.||"Give Peace A Chance (Single Mix)"||Intermission||3:52|
|3.||"Games People Play"||Inner Circle||3:26|
|5.||"Crash! Boom! Bang!"||Roxette||4:25|
|6.||"Kiss From A Rose"||Seal||4:47|
|7.||"Mission Of Love (Radio Edit)"||Nemorin||3:33|
|8.||"Heart Of Stone"||Dave Stewart||4:36|
|9.||"Shortcut To Forever"||Phillip Ingram & Siedah Garrett||3:31|
|10.||"Fantasian Homecoming"||The Munich Symphony Orchestra||2:50|
|11.||"I'm A Stoneman"||The Stoneman||3:22|
|12.||"United (Radio Edit)"||Prince Ital Joe feat. Marky Mark||4:02|
|13.||"Hand In Hand"||Ophelia||4:07|
|14.||"Back & Forth (LP Version)"||Aaliyah||3:51|
|16.||"How, How (The Pre Mix)"||Yello||5:54|
|17.||"Nasty World"||Real Im-Pact||4:05|
|18.||"Dream On (The Neverending Story)"||Nemorin||3:52|
|19.||"Born To Be Wild"||The Stoneman||3:38|
|20.||"Shortcut To Forever"||The Munich Symphony Orchestra||2:38|
Release[edit | edit source]
The NeverEnding Story III was first released in Germany on October 27, 1994. In the Philippines, it was released by Jemah Films on January 4, 1995, with an advanced screening on January 2. The film was given a limited release in the United States on February 2, 1996.
Reception[edit | edit source]
Variety stated: "The NeverEnding Story lives up to its title in the worst way possible with this third outing, a charmless, desperate reworking of the franchise that might just as well be subtitled 'Bastian Goes to High School'".
Box office[edit | edit source]
By late December 1994, the film grossed $5 million in Germany.
References[edit | edit source]
- The Neverending Story III (EN) [Original title]. LUMIERE. Retrieved on 9 September 2019.
- The Neverending Story III: Escape From Fantasia. Retrieved on 31 October 2017.
- "'Neverending Story 3': A magical blend of fantasy and reality", Manila Standard, Kamahalan Publishing Corporation, December 25, 1994, p. 19. Retrieved on September 29, 2020.
- "The Cinema", Manila Standard, Kamahalan Publishing Corporation, January 1, 1995, p. 20. Retrieved on September 29, 2020.
- The Neverending Story III (December 27, 1994). Retrieved on October 31, 2017.
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