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Veevleigh

Watching Friday the 13th For the First Time

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I know a lot of people love the Kane Hodder Jasons. But I have to say that he played Jason in all the idiotic plots. By the time you get to Part 9 and 10, you'll just see how retarded the story flows. And if storylines is important they would be the absolute bottom.

I'm surprise that someone would rank Part 7 that high and Part 4 so low. Part 4 still today feels like a theatrical film while Part 7 was nothing more then a low budget made for TV film. If your going to make a Vs. battle, at least make it fair. Jason spends the last act getting knock around like a pinball and never did I care or root for Tina because it felt like she wasn't in any danger to begin with. Lets not forget the dad coming out of the lake. So he spends years down there, and nobody bother to recover the body since its too hard to fish out someone 15 ft under water? Nice logic they got there.

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@Truth

From what I understand, there's very few left.

@Risinggrave

Part 8 is hard to defend. I know a lot of my enjoyment is based on nostalgia or asthetics. As a film, it's best looked at as a monster movie. I think why people dislike everything after 6 so much is that the story stopped progressing and the plots became situational (vs. a psychic, in a city, etc). Everything after Part 6 is basically a one-off, popcorn movie loosely connected to the franchise. I enjoy Part 7 and 8 because they're free from the shackles of most of Jason's backstory and history but still exist in the original timeline. Everything after Part 8 feels like a charicature of Jason. Anyway, rambling...

Part 8 is a fun movie that should be taken lightly. @Risinggrave's explanation for some of the oddities are great and how you should view it with your brain. I suggest turning your brain off though and just enjoying it for it is- a campy, 80's slasher made for a quick buck. 

To @Veevleigh's comment about how New York is characterized in the movie- before 9/11, almost all movies made New York seem like a shitty, uncaring place populated by the scum of the Earth.

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1 hour ago, bewareofbears said:

Part 8 is hard to defend. I know a lot of my enjoyment is based on nostalgia or asthetics. As a film, it's best looked at as a monster movie. I think why people dislike everything after 6 so much is that the story stopped progressing and the plots became situational (vs. a psychic, in a city, etc). Everything after Part 6 is basically a one-off, popcorn movie loosely connected to the franchise. I enjoy Part 7 and 8 because they're free from the shackles of most of Jason's backstory and history but still exist in the original timeline. Everything after Part 8 feels like a charicature of Jason. Anyway, rambling...

Part 8 is a fun movie that should be taken lightly. @Risinggrave's explanation for some of the oddities are great and how you should view it with your brain. I suggest turning your brain off though and just enjoying it for it is- a campy, 80's slasher made for a quick buck. 

 

I dig your take on it. Makes sense. 

I can't turn my brain off, sadly. I don't know how many old films I can't watch anymore because of logic damning them for me. 

Luckily the F13 series isn't one I have had ruined except for JgtH and FvJ. I can't watch either of those pieces of smacked ass. If Manhattan had ended decisively, I'd probably not include Jason X in my "official" head canon either. As it is, I really like 6 to end it as it sends Jason back to the lake, and it didn't take a conjured ghost dad to do it.

 

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Jason X was the only movie I walked out of at the theaters half way through.  I liked how bad ass Jason was, but the whole concept of the movie was pure shit. 

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6 hours ago, bewareofbears said:

-@Veevleigh's comment about how New York is characterized in the movie- before 9/11, almost all movies made New York seem like a shitty, uncaring place populated by the scum of the Earth.

I think the New York as a hell hole movie concept started going away as early as the 90s when giuliani took over and they Disney-fied Times Square.

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7 hours ago, Thatguyinktown said:

I think the New York as a hell hole movie concept started going away as early as the 90s when giuliani took over and they Disney-fied Times Square.

Nah. While they may have tried to make NYC look good in real life, fiction is always looking for the dark spaces. 

Example, Daredevil and Hell's Kitchen. Even after it was fixed up IRL, fiction finds a way to make it look like Gotham's little sister. The TV show went and "Aliens blew shit up. Now the gangs are getting a stranglehold." 

 

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16 hours ago, Loading said:

I'm surprise that someone would rank Part 7 that high and Part 4 so low. Part 4 still today feels like a theatrical film while Part 7 was nothing more then a low budget made for TV film. If your going to make a Vs. battle, at least make it fair. Jason spends the last act getting knock around like a pinball and never did I care or root for Tina because it felt like she wasn't in any danger to begin with. Lets not forget the dad coming out of the lake. So he spends years down there, and nobody bother to recover the body since its too hard to fish out someone 15 ft under water? Nice logic they got there.

I guess for me it's more to do with the characters and who's side you're on in the movie. I think with the Friday films (and to some extent, other slasher movies), there are some movies where you're not really meant to care about the characters. You're supposed to be on Jason's side, really. You're there to see Jason pull off these 'awesome' kills. And that doesn't really appeal to me much. I prefer to be on the side of the survivors, feeling tension and excitement through watching them survive by the skin of their teeth. It's why I prefer playing Counsellor over Jason in the actual game.

Both Parts VI and VII reposition the protagonist of the story front and centre. Too many other installments of the franchise the final girl is only the final girl by merits of her missing most of the action for various plot related reasons. In VI and VII however, the main characters are active heroes, who know about Jason early on, and are trying to stop him.

I see your point about Tina being so powerful she doesn't feel in danger, but I think she does. Her fragility in her performance coupled with Jason's aggression lets you know that if he gets her hands on her, she's in serious trouble. If she was a quippy superhero, I'd agree with you, but I think her performance keeps her feeling vulnerable.

14 hours ago, bewareofbears said:

 

To @Veevleigh's comment about how New York is characterized in the movie- before 9/11, almost all movies made New York seem like a shitty, uncaring place populated by the scum of the Earth.

 

37 minutes ago, Risinggrave said:

Nah. While they may have tried to make NYC look good in real life, fiction is always looking for the dark spaces. 

Example, Daredevil and Hell's Kitchen. Even after it was fixed up IRL, fiction finds a way to make it look like Gotham's little sister. The TV show went and "Aliens blew shit up. Now the gangs are getting a stranglehold." 

 

I'm totally aware of the 'New York as a Hell hole' trope. Hell's Kitchen is a great (hilarious, by all accounts of people who actually live there) example, but more stems from the comic books depiction of it than any realism. But Part VIII just seemed to push it to ridiculous extremes. I mean, sure, I get the crime ridden rough city is in particular a late 80's/early 90's cliche (Predator 2 does similar), but this New York is beyond a joke. The fact that nobody so much but bats an eyelash at Jason totally ruins the spectacle of him being in the city. As well as the fact he shows no interest in anybody else to kill either!

The whole reason the 'slasher in a city' concept is a marketable one is because you imagine the carnage he'd unleash if he was somewhere heavily populated. Instead, he's utterly ignored, and he in turn ignores everybody else. It makes Manhattan just window dressing (or obvious fog ridden sets) rather than an actual city. Replace the trees with people who don't even react and you have pretty much the same set up as setting it at Crystal Lake.

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18 hours ago, Veevleigh said:

 

The whole reason the 'slasher in a city' concept is a marketable one is because you imagine the carnage he'd unleash if he was somewhere heavily populated. Instead, he's utterly ignored, and he in turn ignores everybody else. It makes Manhattan just window dressing (or obvious fog ridden sets) rather than an actual city. Replace the trees with people who don't even react and you have pretty much the same set up as setting it at Crystal Lake.

In the original script Jason was suppose to spend a lot of time in NY and create a lot of carnage. They even stated that they wanted to make Jason climb the Statue of Liberty and jump off of it. They were short on money and never came close to that.

But your right that Manhattan was nothing more then window dressing. They could have just left the movie back at crystal lake because Jason ignores nearly everybody and only goes after the usual suspects. That was super lame and not Jason like. Even FvJ got it right by walking through the cornfields and hacking people up. Also nobody really bothers to help the main characters out and somehow not even find it strange to see a mask killer walking the streets. Top off the fact that the sewers somehow flows acidic waste for god knows why and Jason turning back into a NORMAL kid and you got a movie that never bother to make any sense.

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Here's my thoughts on part 8, it's certainly not one of the better movies in the series, but, I can still watch it. I think its better if you don't take it too seriously, because clearly, it wasn't intended to be. I love Jasons look in part 8 though, in fact, it's my 2nd favorite Jason design, part 6 being my number 1 (both movie and Jason design). I guess you could say part 8 is a guilty pleasure, at least it is for me anyway :lol:

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On 24/03/2018 at 4:25 PM, Loading said:

In the original script Jason was suppose to spend a lot of time in NY and create a lot of carnage. They even stated that they wanted to make Jason climb the Statue of Liberty and jump off of it. They were short on money and never came close to that.

But your right that Manhattan was nothing more then window dressing. They could have just left the movie back at crystal lake because Jason ignores nearly everybody and only goes after the usual suspects. That was super lame and not Jason like. Even FvJ got it right by walking through the cornfields and hacking people up. Also nobody really bothers to help the main characters out and somehow not even find it strange to see a mask killer walking the streets. Top off the fact that the sewers somehow flows acidic waste for god knows why and Jason turning back into a NORMAL kid and you got a movie that never bother to make any sense.

I have heard about it intending to spend more time in New York. The budget issue is a shame, but even then, they should of done more than use it as window dressing. I think we agree on all the same points here.

So, next up...

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Oh boy. This one turned out a lot harder to review than I thought it was going to be. Why?

Because it's not actually that bad.

Whoa, whoa, okay, put your machetes and axes down, let me explain.

It is a terrible Friday the 13th movieBut as a movie on its own, it actually has quite a lot going for it. So, let's start with the positives:

The intro is a great fun little twist on the usual Friday the 13th set up. And I love that this film actually addresses the idea that Jason has been around for so long, as an obviously supernatural killer, that people have started to take interest. I love that it answers the question of what happens if you just straight up blow Jason up (we've never really seen people dismember him or physically destroy his body before) and it's actually a pretty gripping intro, letting you realise that you're in for something different. Something where the majority of characters in the movie are fully aware of Jason Voorhees.

Jason's look in the movie (for the short period we see him, more on that later), is actually pretty great. I can imagine the tumour style head is controversial among fans, but I love the idea he's been at this for so long, and is now so mutated and undead, that the hockey mask has become embedded in to his face. It's still pretty far down my list of favourite Jason looks, but it's a nice take on it either way, and the make-up looks great. (Unfortunately, the same can't be said about the weird grunting they give Jason, which sounds just plain comical. Which is a real shame because it ruins an otherwise great look).

The effects are superb, in my opinion. Not the flying lights or anything, but the actual visual gore effects. It has some of the best looking gore in the series in my opinion, the melting bodies after Jason has possessed them look absolutely superb, as does the demonic worm Jason when it emerges from the cop's head at the end (more on 'demonic worm Jason' in the negatives).

The soundtrack is one of the better ones in the series too, and hugely enjoyable, and the film feels like it has much more of a budget than a lot of the others.

The characters are pretty well handled too. Steven's transformation from seemingly the be-speckled nerd who would be one of Jason's first victims in to a fully blown action hero is great fun, and Creighton Duke is played with enough charisma to make what could seem like a very strange character inserted mostly to drop exposition in to an interesting idea (and the idea of a serial killer hunter is pretty fun too). However, I couldn't shake the feeling that the movie would of been much better served if this had actually been an older, more experienced Tommy Jarvis, but given how much the film totally ignored continuity, I think asking for Tommy's return is a bit much!

There's also some great fun dialogue and scenes. For example, Steven and Randy after their fight. "I've got a gun." "Fuck that, I've got a gun!" is well played and funny. Or Joey's (?) "Nobody touches that fucking ray of sunshine!". It's got some great little quotes and scenes in it, and actually truly memorable characters because of it.

But... and on to the negatives... unfortunately... its just not Friday the 13th.

There's no getting away from it. If this wasn't a Friday the 13th movie, if the killer wasn't Jason Voorhees, I'd probably quite enjoy it. Not enough to rate it as a classic or anything, but as a fairly entertaining, competent horror film. But it's not just any movie. It's a Friday the 13th movie. And simply put...

...you have to respect what's come before, at least slightly. Making subtle changes, taking the franchise in new directions, it's all fine. Even the very core idea, at its very basics, of revealing that there has always been something supernatural about Jason could work. Some of Adam Marcus's explanations, of Pamela trying to resurrect Jason through supernatural means, which is why he always seemed more than human, even before Part VI, could have worked. But not like this.

Firstly, the big one. It's a Jason Voorhees movie with barely any Jason Voorhees in it. Even Part V, with its copycat, understood that you need the hockey masked murderer to make the movie people want to see. What's depressing is that it could of easily been addressed, in a manner that while it wouldn't of salvaged the movie, would of at least helped a little. Each possessed body could of just put the hockey mask on! It was right there in the morgue when he possesses his first victim. At least normal people in the hockey mask would of been better that what we got!

Secondly though, it's the introduction of this 'body hopping' lore at all. Duke explains it like it's common sense, but it doesn't make a lick of sense by the other films. Especially since there's no way Duke could know Jason has this ability. Not only does it completely break the lore of what we know from before, but it means what we're watching isn't a Friday the 13th movie. Giving totally random new abilities to Jason at this point just makes it so we don't feel like we're watching the same franchise.

Thirdly, as much as I like the idea of a film exploring where Pamela lived, this also fails to make sense. Why on Earth does a camp cook have a huge mansion? Even if you accept that she made some kind of pact via the Necronomicon (yes, I've read Adam Marcus's comments on believing Jason to be a Deadite) why would she then also keep a dagger that can magically kill him in the house? I mean, surely you'd get rid of that!

Fourthly, the movie totally ignores that we've seen Jason die. We know that Jason can be killed because Tommy did it! So if that's true, why on Earth introduce this 'only a Voorhees can kill him' schtick?

Add to that the fact that if you're going to do an origin based story for Jason, explaining his supernatural abilities, at least reference his entire reason for being. Jason storms in to his house like it's nothing, there's no mention of Pamela beyond a news report at the beginning, whereas before we've always seen Jason is oddly affected by memories of his mother and childhood. We just don't get that here.

And fifthly, if you want your big bad supernatural zombie killer to be respected, don't turn him in to a muppety snake thing. The visual effects are still pretty impressive on it, actually a little reminiscent of The Thing, I thought, but you can't present an unstoppable killer as a little demonic worm and still have audiences fear and respect him.

Sixthly, Jessica is a little disappointing. The franchise usually has strong female leads (Part VIII not withstanding) that almost manage to counter some of the more 'sexist' moments of the slasher franchise, it's usually the main female who's a supremely competent heroine by the end, but here, Jessica only really comes in to her own at the very end, and that's a little disappointing. Her reactions are quite human and believable, but not what we want from our hero.

I'm sure I could rant a lot more about the inconsistencies and stupidity in relation to previous instalments, but I'm sure it's nothing other Friday the 13th fans haven't considered.

Now for the hard bit. Where do I rate this movie? It may be a rubbish Friday movie, but it's a reasonably entertaining horror movie. Therefore, contriversally, I rate it above Part VIII and Part V, putting my ratings board at:

 

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives

Friday the 13th Part Three

Friday the 13th Part Two

Friday the 13th Part Four: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Yes, it is a terrible Friday film, but I honestly think it's more entertaining than both Part VIII and Part V as a movie.

EDIT:

So I had some spare time tonight, so I watched...

Jason X

This is possibly even harder to review than Jason Goes to Hell. After all, Jason Goes to Hell was difficult because it completely defied and broke Friday the 13th lore, but was a reasonable movie. Jason X is just... stunningly dumb. But the thing is, it knows its dumb. So how to you criticise something being intentionally stupid?

Well, let's start. Firstly, this is the Jason movie I remember coming out. I'd of been fourteen in 2001, and I caught it when it hit the TV. I remember the trailers though, and I remember even back then this movie seeming like a joke. By 2001, '... IN SPACE!' movies were already jokes, and the idea that they were actually trying to market a 'serious' horror franchise entry that sounded like a parody was hard to believe.

I'm still not sure of the logic behind it. I mean, Jason X was made to preserve interest in the brand while Freddy vs. Jason was in development hell, so who the heck decided it was best to do an instalment that would have people giggling at the very idea of I don't know, but it seems the decision was to embrace the stupidity of the movie, and make something that borders on a B-Movie parody.

Because this film is ridiculously bad, but in a campy, self aware way. You have latex clad cyborg assassins, probably the most clueless, shameless sex scenes the franchise has ever seen, and possibly the lowest budget looking space ship since Leprechaun 4: In Space (oh hey, there's a so-bad-it's-funny in space movie again). But unfortunately, while it's bad and self aware, it never quite hits that 'fun' tone of say, Part VI. Often, you're laughing AT the movie instead of WITH it.

But that's not to say there isn't some good. It has at least got some consistent plot, and things are kicked in to high gear very early on, which goes against the usual slow burn/build up for a Friday movie. The acting is actually not too bad, Rowan is a competent female lead, and it's fun (as silly as it is) that KM-14 is a female kick ass android, and manages to be entertaining. The film has some great gags too, from 'Microsoft Wars' to that brilliant virtual Camp Crystal Lake scene, and when it's playing up its jokey nature it works really well. And Brodski is so ridiculously badass he's kind of fun.

Unfortunately, there are down sides. For starters, both pre and post uber-Jason are the worse he's ever looked. The revamped hockey mask design is awful, his hair is long for no real reason, and you can always see his eyes which looses a lot of the mystery. Why the heck they decided to redesign the hockey mask when they were keeping it for Freddy vs Jason AND this was meant to be 'evil gets an upgrade' (yes, I even remember the tagline) which would of made much more sense if Jason had been in his classic look pre-upgrade, and a new look after, I don't know. It's just another bad, terrible decision. But pre-Uber Jason at least looks a little scary, whereas Uber-Jason literally looks like he should be duking it out with the Power Rangers.

Whenever the film is taking itself seriously, it just fails utterly. This is not a concept that works taken seriously. But fortunately, it's not often that it does. It's pretty obvious most scenes are played for laughs. I can watch this movie and have a giggle at how absurd it is.

This review was a bit of a mess (much like the movie!) because it's just so hard to review a 'so bad it's kinda fun' movie. It's a terrible film, but in such a silly, fun way I can't help but find myself enjoying it. Quality wise, it's probably worse than Part V, and possibly Part VIII too, but for pure enjoyment because it's terrible, I'd rate it above both, leaving my rankings for the classic main series as:

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives

Friday the 13th Part Three

Friday the 13th Part Two

Friday the 13th Part Four: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Jason X

Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Freddy vs. Jason next. I know it comes before Jason X continuity wise, but it was released afterwards. And even though a lot of people feel it doesn't count as part of the canon, I feel that I should still review it.

 

 

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Sorry to double post, but I thought I'd move on to the next film...

Freddy vs. Jason

Before I start this, I should preface it with the fact that I hate Freddy. As I think I've mentioned before, I belong to a horror costuming group, and unfortunately, our Freddy actor did something that I don't want to repeat here, but hurt me very badly directly (and was kicked out of the group for it). And ever since, I've been unable to look at Freddy the same way. So I went in to this uncomfortable, and not really liking the Nightmare on Elm Street films.

I think 'vs' films are very tricky. I think a key rule to a good 'vs' film is that it respects both franchises. So no cheating, no changing characters to fit the story (for example, Alien vs. Predator changed the Predators so they happily hunt in the artic and the life cycle of the aliens, which cheapens the idea of seeing them fight). For the most part, however, Freddy vs. Jason actually does a good job of delivering solid versions of its title villains, meaning that this does really feel like a showdown between the two. Unfortunately, there are definitely some problems, however...

Firstly, let's talk about Jason's design. In many ways, this is still instilled in my head as the Jason Voorhees, simply because the coated Jason design was everywhere after this movie, in all the spin off media, and where ever you looked. However, there's no getting around the fact that it's just not that good. Earlier I mentioned it's important you see these two icons at their most, for lack of a better word, iconic. Unfortunately, redesigning Jason means we're not really seeing 'our' Jason. I actually really like the battered coat and the fact he seems to be wearing Pamela's sweater, but apart from that, I'm not too keen on the rest. The blackened head is probably the most false looking 'hood' any Jason has worn, and while I like the battered hockey mask look, losing the axe mark was a definite mistake, given how important it is to Jason's designs. Also, as with Jason X, his eyes are far too much on display, ruining both the mystery and losing the fantastically creepy part-skull that was pretty consistent in the previous films. I wonder a little if Jason's new design was meant to be how he looked after he was set on fire during the corn field scene, and then they just used it for all the scenes before that too, since being blackened and burnt seems to be part of the design.

I also feel like there's a need to talk about Jason's performance. I know that it's pretty popular with Friday fans to be mad Kane wasn't invited back for Freddy vs. Jason, and I don't really want to jump on the band wagon, but unfortunately, Ken Kirzinger just lacks the anger, rage and emotion Kane brought to the part. I understand the desire to put somebody even bigger behind the mask so he towers over Freddy, but it feels like the people behind this film felt that anybody could play Jason, and missed that there's a lot of character and personality to him and the way he moves. Losing that means Jason moves much more robotically, much more like Michael Myers than Jason Voorhees, and it dampens the fun of seeing these two square off. Plus, you still have Robert England and Kane Hodder acting, surely it would of been better to get two iconic actors to reprise their roles rather than one for the showdown. They'd never of dreamt of re-casting Freddy for this, so why Jason?

Another negative, especially from a Friday the 13th fan point of view, is that this movie is basically Nightmare on Elm Street: Guest Starring Jason. The set up is actually a fairly smart cross over reason, Freddy needs to be remembered, and uses Jason to do it. Then Jason won't stop. Fine. That's a good reason to have these two fight. But by having every major character from Elm Street, having the main subplot being the conspiracy to forget Freddy, having Freddy be the main villain behind everything, Jason just feels like a big dumb henchman who gets out of control. There's actually no reason for this to even be Jason Voorhees. This exact same set-up would of worked with, say, Freddy vs. Michael Myers, and that's a real shame.

The thing is, it could of been quite easily fixed. Two of the main characters are from a mental asylum. Surely the easy thing to do would of been to have one there because of Freddy and one there because of Jason, it would of allowed for somebody to bring some weight to the fact Jason is there. As it is, they realise it's Jason and his entire history thanks to the cop, Stubbs, who's only job really in the story seemed to be to drop that bit of exposition. I'd be surprised if in early drafts the escapees from the asylum weren't meant to be old characters from the respective franchises, but it fell through. That would of made a lot more sense, and it would of made sure Friday the 13th felt represented.

As it is, Jason is, at best, the 'good guy' of the movie. Much like Alien vs. Predator made the Predators situational allies, this almost does the same with Jason, and it's even more jarring here.

Luckily, Friday fans are thrown one bone, and that's that Jason kicks ass in this movie. Freddy, for all his machinations and evil villain scheming, pales against Jason's brutal kill count. It turns out messing with people in their dreams and cackling at them is less effective at killing than slicing people in half with a machete. It's also nice that Jason basically wins the final battle, even if he needs an assist.

It also has to be said, for all its flaws, this film is fun. It is great fun to see these two go against each other, and although it takes a while to get to it, once it gets to the final fight, it's great to see. Even if it hits the age old problem that Jason would just kill Freddy in one hit so Freddy has to be untouched for most of the fight (the same problem with Tina vs. Jason in Part VII, my favourite instalment, but Tina kicks Jason's ass a bit too much because if Jason manages to get his hands on her, she'd instantly die).

The human characters are pretty consistent and manage to wrap the movie in a fairly solid plot, even if none are amazing stand outs. Lori is a little bland, but a reasonable lead, and Linderman's character development made him a bit of a stand out. It's a shame that human characters from the other movies couldn't be brought in, as that's how they'd of managed to make them feel special, but it's still a better executed set of human characters than Part V or Part VIII.

Overall, it's a pretty fun film. I had fun watching it, despite my misgivings about Freddy. It's not up there with the classics at all, and in fact, I'd even rate Jason Goes to Hell above it, which at least was more of an original horror film, but it's a bit of fun.

Just don't mention Jason being scared of water. By far the movie's weakest moment, and something that made no sense even in the continuity of the film (given he doesn't care about it at the end), let alone in respect to the franchise!

My ratings stand at:

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives

Friday the 13th Part Three

Friday the 13th Part Two

Friday the 13th Part Four: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Freddy vs. Jason

Jason X

Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Only the remake to go. And then I thought for fun, I'd throw in Never Hike Alone too, because it's superb and deserves inclusion.

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The first F13 films i saw were Parts 1, 2 and 3.
I rented them on VHS as a kid.

When i read people posting here that the first saw the remake or jason x.... i dont know what to think... fuck... it's like watching The Force Awakens, or Attack of the Clones, and never seeing before Return of the Jedi or The Empire Strikes Back.... that's weird and fucked up.
 

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On ‎09‎/‎04‎/‎2018 at 6:26 PM, JasonWhorehees said:

The first F13 films i saw were Parts 1, 2 and 3.
I rented them on VHS as a kid.

When i read people posting here that the first saw the remake or jason x.... i dont know what to think... fuck... it's like watching The Force Awakens, or Attack of the Clones, and never seeing before Return of the Jedi or The Empire Strikes Back.... that's weird and fucked up.
 

I guess so, but without knowing someone's personal circumstances its tough to say.  Some people might have watched Jason X or The New Blood first as that's all they could get their hands on a the time ... back before the internet made stuff more easily available (cheap/for free!) a DVD or VHS cost a chunk of money. When I grew up, you either got lucky for your birthday of Christmas, or you waited to see what the TV schedules threw up. Watching all the films in order whenever you wanted wasn't a luxury we afford.

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Holy thread resurrection, Batman.

So I lost steam doing this when it came to do the remake. I'd seen the remake before, and I just had no desire to go back to it. But the other day I finally sat down, and gave it a rewatch. And it was... interesting.

So...

Friday the 13th (2009)

It's interesting to watch this in light of the recent Halloween sequel, and see the difference in audience faith. One thing that leapt out at me about this film was the two false starts the movie uses to start the story. I initially thought showing Pamela dying was the right move to make, to bring audiences up to speed, but the 2018 Halloween proved that you can trust audiences to learn the past without flashbacks, and it's an odd way to start the film because it leaves the (in this version) unnamed Counsellor who killed her feel like a loose end.

Then you get the entirely false start with the teenagers, which goes on for far too long, and seems set only really so somebody can retell Jason's origins around a camp fire. This is where it starts to feel like it treats the audience like they're dumb, and it never lets up. We've just seem Pamela die, we know Jason Voorhees, we don't need a character narrating it. That said, this sequence felt the most classical Friday out of the movie, and the sleeping bag over the fire kill is pretty cool. The first time Jason runs, despite it being odd to see him do so, also managed to feel scary because it's not something he'd ever done before, and it made him more intimidating.

However, once we get to the main teens (fun to see Sam Winchester battle Jason Voorhees!) the film feels like it takes all of the dull stereotypical aspects of Friday the 13th and none of the fun. So yes, we get sexy teens being sexy, yes we get over the top kills and Jason stalking them, but because it's trying to be grim and gritty, none of the kills feel fun or silly, none of the characters are anything but one dimensional, quite dull charactertures, and there's no real storyline for them bar Sam (as I'm going to be calling him)'s search for his sister. Which itself just feels like a random plot alteration for plot's sake; Jason keeping a prisoner doesn't feel right and doesn't really make any sense. It's just so Sam has somebody to save.

And unfortunately that just leads to a very average movie. By making Jason a more realistic survivalist/hunter, we get a few nice moments with traps and surprise kills with ranged weapons, like the bow and arrow, but it also brings him down to a human level.  To the extent Sam (given the actor is so tall) feels like almost a physical match for him when they confront each other at the end. It just doesn't do anything unique and ends up feeling boring.

One final point, Jason's look goes the classic end of the 00's way of grungy and gigantic, but I kind of like it. The mask's shape looks a bit off, but its wear and tear is kind of cool, although I'm not a big fan of the coat and shirt. It doesn't quite work as well as in Freddy vs. Jason and it's missing the classic worksman shirt. Also I hate the odd bit of spouting hair and feel too much of his face and head are visible behind the mask. I actually preferred the wrap mask, around his face, as a way of updating the pillow sack, but I don't really feel it was necessary. And it led to the hilarious scene where Jason picks up the hockey mask for the first time, then checks himself out in the mirror, like a teenager about to go on a night out, and it just felt ridiculous to me.

Still, it's a modern movie, so an easier watch then Part VIII and Part V, but on revision, and after some time thinking (altering my original order), I'd rate the movies in this order:

 

Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

Friday the 13th Part Three

Friday the 13th Part Two

Friday the 13th Part Four: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Freddy vs. Jason

Jason X

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Friday the 13th (2009)

Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning

 

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1 hour ago, Veevleigh said:

Holy thread resurrection, Batman.

Great review as alway, don’t necessarily agree with all your points but it’s enjoyable to hear someone else’s opinion about it. 

Glad your back in Camp and or posting again. Still one of the best profile pics around. 

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10 hours ago, Slasher_Clone said:

Great review as alway, don’t necessarily agree with all your points but it’s enjoyable to hear someone else’s opinion about it. 

Glad your back in Camp and or posting again. Still one of the best profile pics around. 

Haha, thank you! Glad to be back. And I'm fine for a little differing opinions, I can see how some people might enjoy the reboot. It just wasn't quite my thing.

On the topic of things that are my thing, even though it's not official, I wanted to talk about...

Never Hike Alone

Before I rewatched this for the review, I planned on framing this review around the fact that this was a fanfilm, and as such we had to understand it had a lower budget than the other movies, and to be prepared for weaknesses based around that. But upon the rewatch, although there are plenty of (very clever) editing tricks and directional choices to show the low budget (primarily using the first person camera) everything looks so good that's put in the film, I don't really feel it needs its budget dismissed. This is how you make a low budget film; you make story and editing choices that reflect your budget.

So, on that theme, this film very wisely eschews the typical Friday set up, instead introducing us to a lone protagonist. The very clever premise of him being a Youtube Hiking vidlogger (not quite sure of the right term there) means that he can deliver plenty of exposition to the audience through the means of making his Youtube show while the film is a one person act. That said, this wouldn't of worked with a lesser actor. Carrying an entire movie on your own is a challenge even for the most expert of film actors, but Andrew Leighty does a remarkable job. There's a real potential here for Kyle to come across as a bit douchey and unlikeable, but he does an amazing job of avoiding that while keeping the experienced, knowledgeable sense Kyle needs to make the movie work.

It would be easy to make this purely found footage, or to throw Kyle right in to the camp, but again, very clever choices are made to build tension, including a great sequence with Coyotes at night that delivers just a hint of what's to come. Kyle's Youtube act also makes him perfect to deliver exposition about Crystal Lake (even if it means we have to accept he has all this knowledge of it and just found it by chance; it's fine in this type of film).

Once Jason shows up, we also get something quite exciting and new, because Kyle is presented as a physically fit, able, aggressive protagonist. It's often been a long running joke for people who mock slasher movies, 'Oh, I'd just run away', 'look how slow he's moving, I'd just hit him' etc. and this film does a wonderful job of dispelling the myth as to why that wouldn't work. Kyle is capable, practical, smart and strong, but none of that matters when your opponent is Jason Voorhees, and it shows.

It's also worth complimenting the way the directing sets up the geography of the film world, by using Kyle's narration and later returns to familiar points to let us know just where Kyle is and where he needs to go (for example, tripping over the barbed wire). It helps keep the tension and for an audience to relate to Kyle's plight. Geography of the scene in horror is, in my opinion, really important (see the failures of Part VIII, where we have no idea where on the boat people are from each other at any one time making Jason's appearances less effective as we never know where he is in relation to the protagonists).

It's admirable as well that this movie went for a whole new look for Jason. Being honest, it wouldn't be in my top five Jason looks, I find him slightly too slight, I think he needs even more bulk, and I'm not 100% sold on the jacket, which almost cuts too much of a heroic figure for Jason in my opinion, but I deeply admire the decision making behind it, love that Vincente DiSanti has put a lot of thought in to it and backstory to this incarnation of Jason. I also love that he feels so 'earthy', like he's almost become part of the camp's colour pallete. I like how most Jason's have a theme (Part VI: tooled up, Part VII: zombified, Part VIII: wet) and I like how this film is no exception. And the 'ghost' hockey mask looks great, it makes Jason feel even more ancient and it's a creepy, different design. (Although when Kyle takes him out with the axe, I kind of wish it had been in the top of the head and given him the axe mark back, but that's just a fannish thing).

Finally, I'm going to talk about the end, so SPOILERS, and go watch if you haven't already, because it's free and it's great:

Kyle's waking up in the Ambulance with no explanation to how he got there feels a bit weak, and while the surprise cameo is fantastic, it raises more questions than it answers. Why on Earth would Tommy Jarvis be so casual about picking up a lost hiker near Crystal Lake with a stab wound? You'd expect more urgency out of him, instead it feels like he doesn't expect Jason to show up, which seems odd given his experiences. Yes, he gets a line, "I knew it!" when he shows up, but I think it'd of been interesting if he was more antsy about leaving, and obviously aware something was up.

But that's a small complaint since we got to see Thom Mathews revive his old role, and call Jason a 'maggot head' one more time!

Overall, this film is actually REALLY good, not just as a fanfilm, but as a short horror movie all on its own. I would probably rank it somewhere like this, but remember, this is a short fanfilm competing with professional movies!:

 

Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

Friday the 13th Part Three

Friday the 13th Part Two

Friday the 13th Part Four: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Never Hike Alone

Freddy vs. Jason

Jason X

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Friday the 13th (2009)

Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning

 

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