This movie starts out like every Friday the 13th movie, with a little girl accidentally killing her father with her crazy telekinetic powers. Yep! The main character in this one is a girl who was just born with all sorts of insane mental powers, because I guess it’s X-Men rules now? Anyway, we cut to several years later, when the little psychic girl is now a hot blonde teenager, because of course. She’s going up to stay with her therapist and mother in their old house by the lake, where she killed her dad. And by total coincidence, it happens to not only be the same lake, but the exact same dock where Jason was drowned at the end of the last movie. So Jason comes back to life and starts killing teenagers, because of course, and the movie basically follows standard slasher movie format, ending with a battle between Jason and the “phoenix” girl. It’s a pretty sweet final fight. In this one Jason’s been like decomposing underwater for a few years, so his face is super gnarly when the mask comes off towards the end. The weirdest part of this movie is the very end; they’re fighting on the dock, and “phoenix” girl uses her powers to bring her dead dad back to life. He like comes up from underwater and drags Jason down with him. So I guess her powers are actually more like Essokinesis, or the ability to warp reality, so perhaps Scarlet Witch would have been a better analogy. And if Jason like can’t die or whatever, then is he just sitting at the bottom of the lake being bear-hugged by the dad? Other than that, it’s your standard one of these. It seems like they’re willing to throw in any conceivable ideas to shake things up, but somehow they just end up feeling more stale than ever. Man, a girl with mind powers? What’s next, is Jason gonna take a trip to some whacky tourist destination? Wouldn’t that be weird, if they sent him to like Los Angeles? Or like Chicago? Or…? Oh….fuck.
Overall Rating: Maximoff/10
So then I guess they decided to bring Jason back, because, fuck it. This movie starts with Tommy, the protagonist of the last two films, again played by a different actor (the guy from Return of the Living Dead, believe it or not), going to dig up Jason’s body and burn it, and his buddy goes with him, cause that’s something friends do together. After digging up Jason’s body they continue to make poor decisions for a while, and they end up sticking a giant metal pole into Jason. The inevitable(?) then happens, when lightning strikes the pole, bringing Jason back to life. Cause I guess we’re doing, like, Frankenstein rules now?Anyway, the rest of the movie is just Jason running around the town that used to be Crystal Lake, slashing a myriad of different folks in the faces with a machete. Tommy spends the whole movie being chased around by the cops, who arrested him for trying to tell them that Jason was back. So we have this whole awkward b-plot of these two bumbling asshole cops chasing around this one kid. Eventually the two cross paths for a final third act showdown between Jason and Tommy, because hey, it worked the last two times. This one’s pretty much like the last one. It’s a little sillier, but somehow a little darker as well. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Jason’s chubby pig head is now all grey and zombified-looking. Another decently entertaining but ultimately void of substance entry in the series! Great, moving on.
Overall Rating: Now I can’t stop imagining who would win in a fight between Frankenstein and Jason Voorhees/10
So I guess the first thing that happened with this movie is that they wanted to try to figure out a way to make another Friday the 13th movie now that Jason was pretty definitively dead. I have to say, they came up with a pretty nice solution. The plot of this movie centres around Corey Feldman’s character, Tommy, now 18 and played by a different actor. They’ve abandoned the plot from the end of the last movie about him becoming a murderer, but he is disturbed, and is sent to live at a group home with other troubled children. The home, of course, is in the woods. Right near the beginning of the movie, one of the kids snaps and kills the fat comic relief character for like literally no reason. It’s a really weird scene. Anyway, soon after that Jason shows up and starts killing teenagers. Or does he? It turns out at the end that the killer was actually a paramedic from the beginning, and the fat kid who died was his son. Apparently seeing his boy’s hacked apart body, he went insane and started dressing up like Jason Vorhees to murder people. At the end of the movie, Tommy puts on the Jason mask and goes running out of the hospital like a madman. So after setting him up to be a murderer in the last one, they then abandoned that plot line, only to end the next one with him also being set up as the the murderer. As dumb as it is, this is actually a cool idea; that Jason can be more of a persona, to be passed on, allows for the franchise to go in a lot of different places while still feeling familiar. And since Jason wasn’t even the original killer in the franchise, it doesn’t seem unfaithful to the character to have a different person behind the mask. It sets up a whole potential realm of sequels that have more to do with the characters and the plots than the specific killer. But, this was the horror industry in the 80s, and you needed an iconic villain. So Jason was brought back from the dead in the next movie, and the franchise goes pretty off the rails from there. But more on that later.
Overall Rating: Slightly Refreshing/10
The first thing that seems funny about this movie is the title. Which I guess made sense at the time, because they really thought it was the last one, but looking back it’s pretty lame that the fourth out of ten sequels claims to be the last one. Anyway, this movie involves another group of teenagers going up to stay together in a cottage out near Crystal Lake. Only this time, there’s a family with a little kid living down the street, so there’s some kid humour and video games reference to offset the teenage sex and violence. And who plays the kid? Oh, just a pre-Gremlins Corey Feldman. And as if that wasn’t forgotten 80’s star power for you, one of the teenagers is Crispin Glover, who’s as hilarious as ever. The movie starts with Jason waking up in the morgue and killing two doctors, and then the majority of the movie plays out just like the last one; kids drinking, having sex, and being killed one by one by Jason. The coolest part is at the end of the movie, when little Corey Feldman goes up against Jason one on one, and actually manages to kill his hockey-mask-wearing ass. It then ends on a rather eery note, with the implication that the Fel-Dog had become addicted to psycho killing. It was a great end to the movie, and would have been a great end to the franchise. The only problem with trying to go out on a high note is that if the movie ends up being good, someone will end up wanting to make more sequels.
Overall Rating: Fel-Dog VS. Jason
Friday the 13th PART 3 is sort of the definitive movie of the franchise. It’s the first one where Jason wears the hockey mask, and it still sticks to the basic slasher format. The plot this time involves a bunch of teenagers going up to a cabin together for fun, as opposed to going to fix up a summer camp like in the other ones. This new twist on the series allows it to be much more full of sex and teenage mischief that the first two. It feels a little more like a Grindhouse/exploitation movie, rather than the slow, chilling atmosphere attempted in the original. Chance are that when you think of Friday the 13th, most of the images in your head are from this movie. There’s also a really weird subplot in the beginning of the movie where they’re being harassed by an all-black motorcycle gang. It gets kinda racist, but in kind of a funny 80’s way. Now, when this movie originally came out, it was released in 3D. Remember, old school 3D? With the red and blue glasses? Back when it was just a neat little gimmick that they did every now and then, instead of an automatic four dollar mark up on every goddamn movie ticket you tried to by? Man, fuck modern 3D. It sucks and it’s unnecessary for 90% of the movies they do it for and everyone should stop doing it. Sorry, kind of off topic. Anyway, with this movie, I actually have a DVD copy that lets you play the movie in 3D, and the red and blue glasses that work with it, so I watched it in 3D for my review. It looks awful, Like, just horrendous. Nothing every really looks like it’s coming out at you, and everything is red and blue. Also, there are a lot of shots specifically dedicated to making the 3D look cool.People swinging broom way out at the audience, or bouncing a yoyo at us. Every time a character hands a joint directly to the camera, it’s hilarious. Anyway, this movie is probably the best ones so far, and is way more fun than the first two. If you want to watch a fun horror movie, and you want to see why everyone loves Friday the 13th, grab a couple of friends, smoke/drink something, and throw this movie on.
Overall Rating: 3D/10
The opening scene of Friday Part 2 has the main girl from the original movie being killed off. Now, it’s a pretty sweet kill. She goes to get something from her fridge, finds Mrs. Voorhees’ severed rotting head next to the milk, and just has time to scream before being stabbed through the temple with an icepick. But considering how major of a character Jason becomes in later sequels, it seems like a missed opportunity that the person who killed his mother dies so early on, and so quickly. Anyway, the rest of the movie plays out almost exactly like the original. It even has the same creepy guy on a bike warning the kids in the town. This time, however, it’s a much larger group of kids, and the camp they’re fixing up is across the lake from Camp Blood. The biggest difference, really, is that the killer is Jason instead of his mother, but that only really becomes apparent in the last half hour or so. Despite having a much bigger role this time, he still doesn’t wear the iconic hockey mask at all in this movie. Instead he rocks a burlap sac with an eye hole ripped into it. The look is a little bit scarier, but I guess it wasn’t nearly original or memorable enough. This movie is still cheesy and retro as all hell, but this time there’s more blood, a bigger body count, more creative kills, and a lot more nudity. It doesn’t really do anything new, but if you liked the first one, this is kind of like an improved version of it. The highlight this time around: Mrs. Voorhees severed rotting head hanging around throughout the whole movie.
Overall Rating: Jason/10
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when the slasher genre started. Some say it was in 1974, with The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Others maintain that it was as early as 1960, with Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho. I personally thing the slasher didn’t fully take form until 1978’s Halloween. But whatever it was that officially gave birth to the genre, it was 1980’s Friday the 13th that brought it into the mainstream. One of the first slasher flicks to employ the camp/wood setting, which has become a pretty common trope, it was hugely popular at the time and spawned nine sequels (the most of any slasher movie? Probably. I’m not googling it), a remake, and a crossover with the Nightmare On Elm Street franchise. The series main killer, Jason Voorhees, also went on to become one of the most famous horror icons of all time. However, what you may not know is that he’s not actually the killer in the first movie. In this one, the killer is his dear old mother, Mrs. Voorhees, played by Betsy Palmer. She’s probably the best part of the movie. She shows up all sweet and makes you think she’s there to help, and then OH SHIT! SHE’S THE MURDERER!!! Overall, this movie is a little boring by today’s standards. There’s not very many kills, and they’re all pretty basic. On the plus side, Tom Savini does awesome special effects, and some highlights are definitely the arrow through Kevin Bacon’s neck and the decapitation near the end. Most of the movie, though, fails to create a chilling atmosphere or consistent tone of creepiness. Nowadays, I would say the only real reason to watch is it’s high campiness factor. Still though, it’s a pretty fun movie and I can see why it was so popular at the time.
Overall Rating: Wait, no, the best part is at the end when the kid pops out and grabs her on the canoe/10