Scanners III: The Takeover” were shot back-to-back. However, the sequels were released in the same year. They were both directed by Christian Duguay and share a few of the same cast members. If not immediately afterwards, the third film was obviously produced very quickly after the second. As this Canadian psychic/action/sci-fi/horror franchise continued into its third part, it strayed further and further from David Cronenberg's original vision.
In fact, aside from the concept of super powerful psychics known as scanners, “The Takeover” is totally unconnected to Cronenberg's film. Alex and Helena, both scanners, were adopted by Elton Monet, the head of a pharmaceutical company that has been searching for a cure the scanner condition. At a Christmas party, while demonstrating his abilities, Alex accidentally causes the death of a friend. He retreats to a Tibetan monastery, determined to learn how to control his powers. Back home, Helena steals a drug from her dad that is supposed to ease scanners' pain. Instead, the patch stripes away Helena's morality and increases her abilities. Soon, she's wildly abusing her psychic powers and plotting world domination. Alex has to return home to stop his sister.
Helena has a bit more screen time than Alex, who disappears for about half-an-hour following the opening scene, which is good for “Scanners III.” Whenever the focus turns to the hero, the movie falls into a sluggish slump. Alex is given an utterly routine romantic subplot with Joyce, played by Valerie Valois, a friend and co-worker of his sister. The two are introduced as lovers. By the time Alex re-enters the film, I honestly forgot about this. So I was a little confused when Valois and Parrish immediately fall back into bed. The two actors have no chemistry and the subplot adds pretty much nothing to the story. It seems clear it was introduced to get a little more gratuitous T&A into the film and to give Alex another reason to stick around.
This is not the only moment of unintentional comedy in “Scanners III.” One of Helena's minions is a buxom blonde nurse, sent to seduce Alex. This leads to her other henchmen, ridiculous goons in black suits, attempting to brainwash him in some weird machine. Of course, it wouldn't be “Scanners” movie without some exploding heads. The film's first is its best, when Helena tortures her old doctor, causing his eyeballs to bulge, before bursting his cranium. Later, Alex explodes a bad guy's head underwater, a sillier scene. The goofiest scene in the movie occurs when Alex traps the lead henchman in a revolving door, squishing his face against the glass until his head splatters. That's more memorable than the final scanner dual, which features more dramatic glances, a laser beam, and ends with a ridiculous electrocution. There's also an inexplicable scene of someone casually having their arm blown off, a really oddly framed moment.