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Californication: Season 3

4.4 out of 5 stars 451 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Sophisticated and unique, this comedy centers on novelist Hank Moody (David Duchovny) who struggles to raise his 13-year-old daughter, while still carrying a torch for his ex-girlfriend. His obsession with truth-telling and self destructive behavior -- drinks drugs and relationships -- are both destroying and enriching to his career.

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Through two seasons of Californication, "brilliant train wreck" and blocked author Hank Moody (David Duchovny, a previous Golden Globe winner and nominated again for this season) seemed pretty much unstoppable. But by the end of season 3, Hank might finally have to answer for his sins, and Hank keeps devising novel ways to sin, which makes him as infuriating a protagonist who has ever graced a TV series. "You're such a mess and you cause such chaos," one of his lovers tells him in the wake of an affair that has helped wreck a marriage, "but I wouldn't change anything." Say one thing for Hank's women: they are gracious to a fault. This season adds another tumultuous chapter to Hank's saga. After unwittingly pushing a celebrated writer and college professor off the wagon, Hank assumes his position at the university under--get this--Dean Koons (Peter Gallagher), and, predictably, proves to be an impolitic educator. Early on he discourages one idolizing student with near fatal results. As the season progresses, he will also indulge in extracurricular activities with a student and an emotionally vulnerable TA (Diane Farr). The limbo that is his home life is beginning to impact on his sardonic daughter Becca (Madeleine Martin), paving the way for the return of Karen (Natascha McElhone), who suggests the three return to New York. Meanwhile, Charlie and Marcie Runkle (Evan Handler and Pamela Adlon), now separated, are forced by the slumping housing market to share their house while their divorce is pending. Hilarity and much sex ensue. Making memorable impressions this season are Embeth Davidtz as the Dean's conquestable wife, Kathleen Turner as Charlie's foul-mouthed and sexually aggressive new boss, and Rick Springfield as a deranged incarnation of himself, who gets it on with Runkle's girl. Madeline Zima makes a fateful return as Mia, who stole Hank's book back in season 1. Her plan to tell all could shatter Hank's dysfunctional family for good. Extras include a blooper reel and a "Marcie's Pajama Party" segment in which Aldon dishes with LA divorcees, along with two season 4 episodes of The Tudors. --Donald Liebenson

Special Features

The Tudors: Season Four, Episode One
The Tudors: Season Four, Episode Two

Product Details

  • Actors: David Duchovny, Natascha McElhone, Evan Handler, Pamela Adlon, Madeleine Martin
  • Directors: Adam Bernstein
  • Writers: Tom Kapinos
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Showtime / Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: November 9, 2010
  • Run Time: 340 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (451 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003FSTN8O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,086 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Californication: Season 3" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Season 3 was at least as strong as Season 2, if not stronger, which is quite a feat of writing.

Duchovny is masterful throughout, and his stunning chemistry with his screen muse Karen, is the cornerstone of what has been an unparalleled series.

Yep, it's strictly adult entertainment, and it needs to be seen as, to paraphrase the beautiful Embeth Davidtz, a mockumetary of the crazy, no-consequence LA life that it is portraying. The show, from the beginning, has been a parody of itself, but it works.

As we go into Season 4, Hank will be facing some major challenges, partly due to his poor, reactive handling of the Mia situation in the Season 3 finale.

Interesting times ahead.
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As a fan of the series up to this point I almost did not purchase this season via Video On Demand due to the negative reviews written here. Magically enough if you purchase the season or episodes you get the full pleasure of enjoying the series as it was meant to be viewed. It is not such a far stretch that Amazon would not allow a free viewing of a series with this sort of content without applying some sort of buffer to it...it was simply a courteous way to offer an insight into the direction of this season. If you like the show than purchase the season and it won't disappoint...if you are new to the show than start at season one...and in closing...don't complain about free.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This show is 100% pure awesome. You thought Duchovny was born to play Fox Mulder? Who knew he'd end up surpassing that role with Hank Moody, a flaky, laid-back and possibly washed-up writer who hasn't put pen to paper in years?

Season 3 begins with Hank making a stab at teaching writing in college. He runs into trouble with his student, his teaching assistant, and the Dean's wife. Hank and Karen't relationship remains complicated, and the acting-up of their daughter Becca matures into a new flavor of petulance. And every time Hank seems about to get things right, he finds a way to turn his life into a new and different kind of train wreck.

Hank's pal Runkle is headed for a divorce while working for one of the more memorable characters we've seen on this show - an extremely rough-edged and intimidating talent agent played by Kathleen Turner. Early in the season, Turner's voice and mannerisms seemed to me like too much, but by the end I thought she was a ton of fun. Runkle's soon-to-be-ex Marcie even gets to meet and greet her one-time idol, Rick Springfield. You know, the actual Rick Springfield from the 80s.

This show is smart, sexy, funny and even at times emotionally tender.
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Format: Amazon Video
I have been unnecessarily harsh on Hank Moody. I gave Californication Season 2 a 5-star, but in essence gave Moody a 1-star. I wrote that he was revealed to be horny, empty and afraid. I now realise that I've been in all these three states myself, but my gender grants me allowances to be weak, which is what these three states are equated to in men. To clarify, being horny, empty and afraid does not make you weak, but macho cultures do not allow men to express these feelings or any feelings-- not that cultures give women carte blanche on these three. This is not a contest on whether men or women have it worse. This is Californication and it is about a man.

The first few episodes of Season 3 are tedious because Hank makes many conquests that you can see are wearing on him. The season builds up to a reckoning beginning in Episode 8, where his daughter completely unmasks him.
- I can't believe you slept with all of them.
HM: It's not that simple, sweetheart...
- That's not good enough. I want to know why. There has to be a reason. Make me understand...
HM: There's no excuse for my behavior. There's no defense if somebody got hurt, especially you. But I need you to know that I started out With the best of intentions. I guess I just wanted them all to see it, The thing that makes them special. I guess that's all anybody wants is to be seen, To be recognized.... But I'm sorry if I let you down, sweetie.

Moody is correct. He does shine the light, however briefly, on whichever woman is with him in the moment. He does make them feel seen, a lot. But in doing that he also shines the light away from himself, so that he is seen as little as possible.
Read more ›
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Right up front: I don't mind the sex and nude bodies. I am no longer the religious prude I used to be, and I enjoy looking as much as any red-blooded guy. HOWEVER: in real life, there is a limit to how big of a jerk a guy can be and still have women - ALL women - beg him to have sex with him. But in Californication, there is NO limit. No matter what he does or how he treats women, they all beg him for sex. It's totally unrealistic, and it's disgusting. It's as if in this series not a single woman has the willpower or wisdom or discretion to refuse to have sex with him. It portrays all females as idiots, perhaps with the exception of his young daughter, who sees right through him. I had to stop watching. And I can't imagine any self-respecting female watching this, except in the sense of watching a train wreck.
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