Thursday, August 26, 2010

Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday (1993) / Jason X (2001)

jasongoestohell-1.jpg picture by sikomike
EWWWW! That Manhattan trip sure was a waste. Of toxic waste that is!  Looks like our old pal Jason Voorhees needs a more pleasant change of environment.  Since he lives in New Jersey, how about visiting our old friend till the end, Chuckster. Killer dolls always bring out the pleasantness. Nope, seems Chucky got torn to pieces at the old amusement park by Andy and the gang. I know! How about, Jason Goes To HELL!
      Some woman heads to Camp Crystal Lake to take a shower and clean up. Jason shows up, chases the woman out into the woods, and then is blown to fucking pieces by the SWAT team.  Jason's remains are taken to the morgue to be examined.  The mortician notices that Jason's heart begins to bizarrely beat faster and faster.  For some unknown fucking reason, the mortician begins to chow down on Jason's heart as if it were a frickin' Big Mack from Mickey D's.  This somehow possesses the mortician with Jason's soul (WHAT?).  Jason begins to kill and possess people around Crystal Lake. He kills a waitress named Diana.  Diana's daughter Jessica's ex boyfriend Steven is blamed for the murder and locked up.  In jail, Steven meets a bounty hunter who has been on Jason's trail for a long time named Creighton Duke. Duke tells Steven that the only way to kill Jason for good is for a blood relative to kill him. It turns out that Diana was Jason's blood sister (again with the killer/victim siblingship!).  The only way for Jason to get his real image back is to possess a blood relative as well, which leaves Jessica and their baby daughter in danger.  Steven must convince Jessica about her dark family history so that she can stop Jason permanently: by sending him straight to Hell!
    In 1989, Paramount Pictures released the eighth installment in their popular Friday The 13th franchise titled Friday The 13th: Jason Takes Manhattan. The movie was a huge disappointment to fans and to Paramount Pictures as well at the box office.   In 1990, Paramount decided that they no longer wanted to produce any more Friday The 13th films and sold the rights back to Sean S. Cunningham, who produced/directed the original.  Cunningham had connections with some executives at New Line Cinema (the home of Freddy Krueger and back then Leatherface as well) and sold the rights to them.  Realizing that both Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger were now under the same company, talk arose again for a Freddy Vs. Jason film.  It just seemed like a great opportunity.  New Line decided to make a movie for both franchises where the two icons would end up in Hell together.   In 1991, New Line released Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare that sent Freddy back to Hell.  In 1993, New Line released the ninth installment in the Friday The 13th franchise titled Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday.  
    The problem was that Paramount Pictures still owned some of the rights like the title "Friday The 13th" as well as all of the events that occurred in the first eight films. New Line only got the rights to the characters Jason Voorhees and Pamela Voorhees, Camp Crystal Lake, and of course the trade mark hockey mask.  This caused New Line to have to come up with something totally different for Jason Goes To Hell rather than the same old same old that we have seen in eight movies. So, they decided to add in a B-Movie/creature feature of sorts and bring in some more supernatural elements to Jason.  This outraged lots of fans back in 1993 and still has people hating this film even today.   I don't hate Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday by any means. In fact, I find this film to be highly entertaining, funny, very gory, and lots of fun. Sue me.
     I'm not denying how ridiculous the narrative to this movie is. But, for me, that's the appeal of it. I'm not a snobby movie goer like a lot of the world's population can be including some of my own friends and family.  I'm fair and see in between. It's always good to look at things outside of the box, which most movie goers won't dare do. We all have different kinds of movies we like. This movie just so happens to be different from the Jason movies that we're used to seeing, which is why this film gets so much hate. I respect Adam Marcus for having the balls to go this direction knowing how pissed off a lot of hardcore fans would get at him.  He wanted to do something completely different with the franchise and he certainly did. It may not be perfect and definitely has some flaws, but that doesn't stop the movie from being highly entertaining.
The screenplay written by Jay Huguely and Dean Lorey is alright.   Jason Goes To Hell is basically if you took a little section from Night of the Creeps and turned it into a slasher flick.   Jason's soul is in the form of this slimy slug sorta thing that crawls into peoples' mouths and controls them.  Also, when someone is possessed by Jason, their reflection in the mirror is the image of Jason.   While, this concept is VERY strange and bizarre, I kinda liked it because it was something NEW.  This wasn't just a slasher flick anymore.  It went into a little bit of a demonic creature feature theme and I was cool with that. The narrative did have some major problems though, which I will discuss in a few minutes. I pretty much enjoyed most of the characters.  Steven was a guy I truly felt bad for. All he wants is to see his daughter who he didn't even know he had. Everyone thinks that he is a psychopathic murderer for most of the movie. Can't this guy ever get a break?  Jessica was decent as the heroine of the film. Not the best, but a hell of a lot better than Rennie from the last movie.  Her mother Diana was okay too. We don't get to know her well though since she gets killed by her "brother" Jason early on. Creighton Duke was kinda annoying. All he basically did was provide the new back story for Jason. The news guy Robert Campbell was a total douche bag. He doesn't last long though since Jason possesses him.   The woman Joey B. who is the manager at the diner REALLY annoyed me. She said the word "FUCK" like it was the only word she knew.  This lady probably grew up in the trailer park. Definitely the kinda character that we would see in any of Rob Zombie's movies. YEESH! I hated this woman and her death was absolutely hilarious.  Everyone else was just part of the body count.
      And now for the best part of any Jason movie: the kills! The kills in Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday are fucking awesome! My personal favorite is when Jason rams some kinda tent post through this chick while she is hopping up and down on her boyfriend's cock like it's a goddamn Pogo stick, then lifts up causing the girl to split in half as blood sprays into the boyfriend's face while he is STILL fucking her! Necrophilia anyone?   A guy's face melts off after Jason hops out of his body. It's really cool because the dude's entire lower jaw just falls to the floor oozing with blood and the teeth still attached.   We also get a nice arm bone popped through the skin.  I loved the death of Joey B. Just fucking hilarious.   The blowing up of Jason at the beginning was also really cool looking.  All in all, great gore thanks to Nicotero and Berger. 
 I do have some issues with the film though. I hated that they changed Jason's back story on us.  It's said that only a blood relative can defeat him and only a blood relative can bring him back. Now, I didn't mind the body jumping ordeal even though it was highly silly, but I do take issue with changing the mythology of Jason.  It didn't help that New Line didn't have the rights to most of what happened in the first eight films that Paramount produced, but that doesn't mean changing who Jason is.   Also, what is up with Jason having a sister? Wrong horror icon guys. That is Michael Myers from the Halloween franchise who wants to kill his blood kin. Not Jason. Jason wants to kill any and everyone who comes to his woods of Crystal Lake to have premarital sex, drinking, and doing drugs.  As simple as that.  These relative stories usually make horror icons problematic in the end. Look at the Halloween series, which has had way more misses than hits.   They even tried a relative story with Freddy Krueger in Freddy's Dead by having the main character turn out to be his daughter.  That didn't work so hot either. Lose the relative stories because they always seem to put a curse on the icon rather than progress the character.   Why the hell did Jason strip the Police Officer fully naked, chain him to the table in a weird S&M/Bondage fashion, and shave the man's mustache? Are you trying to tell me that Jason may be a homosexual?   Just because a guy likes to live alone and has a fucked up looking face doesn't mean he likes dick in the mouth.   Are you sure that this mortician is possessed by Jason Voorhees? It seems like he is more likely possessed by Jesse from A Nightmare On Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge!  That joke was kinda mean. If you are gay/lesbian, I'm sorry if I just sounded like a complete homophobe.  I'm really not, I just found it VERY oddly that Jason would do that. That's all. And what's up with the Book of the Dead from the Evil Dead movies being inside the Voorhees house? I take it that this film was highly inspired by the work of Sam Raimi and it definitely shows.
 I'm personally not a fan of the new  design of Jason in this movie. It's not bad, but I prefer the look from the previous Jason movies.  The finale of this movie was fucking awesome unlike the last installment. No toxic waste or Muppet face Jason here. I loved it when all of the demonic hands came out and pulled Jason into Hell.  I truly miss claymation FX. Those were the good old days!  The best part is when Freddy's glove pops up out of the ground and grabs the hockey mask as Freddy laughs. This of course set it up for Freddy Vs. Jason to be the next installment. 
         The direction by Adam Marcus was pretty good. All I ask in a Jason movie is to be entertained and Marcus definitely delivered there. 
    Harry Manfredini returned with another cool music score.
 The acting was pretty decent for the kinda movie this is. I really liked  John D. LeMay and Kari Keegan as the leads, Steven and Jessica. Steven Culp played a real dick as Robert Campbell. Erin Grey was okay as Diana at the beginning of the film. Steven Williams was okay as Creighton Duke, but didn't really do much for the film aside from providing a false Jason legend. And Kane Hodder was awesome as always as Jason Voorhees, well the few times Jason was Jason. Hodder also had a cameo as a security guard. I find it funny that he killed himself, literally spoken. Hodder also briefly played as Freddy's glove. Damn, technically the guy tackled two icons. That's a first.  Sadly, the next installment will be Kane Hodder's last portrayal of Jason.  All in all, pretty decent acting.
Overall, Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday can be a very fun and enjoyable film as long as you don't take it seriously.  It definitely has its problems, but I still find it to be entertaining as Hell.
See, Hell can be a very fun place to grow up after all.  Jason Goes To Hell is surely a HELLRAISER!  I think it's time for another vacation. Don't you? I hear space is always nice this time of year. Looks like Leprechaun, Pinhead and the Cenobites, and the Critters just got back and said that it will take your breath away! HEHEHEHEHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!
2.5/4 STABS
JASONX-1.jpg picture by sikomike
       Isn't outer space so lovely? The bright stars. The nightly sky. The Killer Klowns who wrap Humans up in Cotton Candy and drink their blood with a bendy straw.  Predators. Aliens.  Hot blondes with snake tits that love to mate with college boys during the winter time.  Space sure has its problems. But now the 26th Century has a HUGE problem. Oh, it's not an it but a whom. His name is JASON VOORHEES!
   The Crystal Lake Research Facility is holding Jason Voorhees, planning to use him to make some quick cash. You know, kinda like what Hollywood has been doing the past thirty years.  Anyway, a scientist named Rowan plans to cryogenically freeze Jason, but Jason sets off some kinda security thing that locks both of them in the freezer. In 2455, a group of space travelling college students happen to find Rowan and Jason perfectly preserved.  They take them aboard their space ship and revive Rowan with some kind of generating machine that uses billions of ants to regenerate damaged tissue.  Things take a deadly turn when Jason wakes up from his 400 years of sleep and begins slaughtering just about everyone on board the ship. It is up to the survivors to stop Jason, but Jason gets an upgrade too, which places them all in grave danger.
  In 1993, New Line Cinema released their first Jason movie titled Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday.  This ninth entry in the long lasting horror franchise left the doors wide open for a Freddy Vs. Jason film.  Originally, New Line had planned for the next film to pit the two slashers against each other. Fans were very excited and already debating on who would win. Problems came up with finding the right script to support both icons.  The '90s were over and the 21st Century had arrived with still no luck in finding a Freddy Vs. Jason script that would work out.   New Line finally decided to make another Jason movie, but wanted a story that would take place way into the future so that it would not mess up the possibility of doing a Freddy Vs. Jason film.  Producer Sean S. Cunningham suggested that in the next film to put Jason in space.  Leprechaun, Hellraiser, James Bond, and Critters have been to outer space. So, why not send Jason there too? So in 2001, Jason X was released to theaters.
       Jason X is a film that fans of this franchise either like or hate. People like me happen to enjoy it for the cheese and that the film is a lot of fun. Others hate it because it is ridiculous and that it is not your typical Jason flick.  Sue me, I enjoy Jason X and thought that it is a cheesy fun time. This is what I call a beer and popcorn flick that you just watch with a group of friends and laugh.  This film is also a little special to me since it was the first Jason movie that I was able to see in the theater.  I was really little when Parts 7-9 came out and plus didn't become a horror fan until like 1996 after being introduced to John Carpenter's 1978 classic Halloween and Scream back when VHS was the way to go.
       The screenplay written by Todd Farmer is pretty amusing and enjoyable.  Farmer would go on to write the awesome 3D remake of My Blood Valentine. This is not just a slasher flick, but a mix of sci fi/action/horror.   I also thought that most of the characters were entertaining to watch especially the fembot with the plastic boobs Kay-Em 14.   This robot was all kinds of badass! Fuck that robot dancing wannabe rocker chick Violet from Friday The 13th: A New Beginning. Kay-Em is the real deal.  Rowan was also really cool as the heroine of sorts. I liked her a lot. Plus, she was pretty hot.  Tsunaron was pretty cool too as the robotics expert/science geek guy. Sgt. Brodski was probably my other favorite character. This guy was so badass!  Prof. Lowe was kinda annoying and such a fucking moron that it was funny. Janessa was pretty sexy and cool. She also pinches her Professor's nipples in order to pass. Ugh, yeah.  Azrael  was pretty funny.  And of course Jason was a badass as always.  I pretty much enjoyed the characters.
       And now for what is usually the best part of a Jason movie: the kills! The kills in Jason X are pretty cool for the most part. The best and my personal favorite is when Jason first wakes up on the space ship and kills a girl by freezing her entire face then slamming her face down on the counter, totally breaking it off.  A girl gets sucked through a small hole.  Some stupid chick decides to fly a shuttle ship with the fuel lines still attached that blows her up.   We also get the usual stabbings, impaling, slit throats, a guy cut in half, and a severed head.  Decent kills.
    One thing that I truly love about this movie is all of the technology and events that have never happened yet.  There's a scene where two guys are playing a virtual reality game that looks like a lot of fun to play.  I thought that the whole ants regenerating tissue machine was very weird and humorous.  That would definitely come in handy this day and age.   There's an Earth II? Really? Please tell me that it is a hell of a lot better than the Earth we are currently living on.   It's not just movies and books getting sequels, but now our fucking planets are too.   I wonder if Earth will go the Friday The 13th route by having twelve sequels in the franchise of life.   What's next in technology? Regenerating rotting corpses since the dawn of man to live another hundred fucking years?   The scene where Tsunaron and Rowan set up a virtual reality of Camp Crystal Lake for Jason as a distraction was great. I loved that they payed homage to the sleeping bag kill from Friday The 13th: The New Blood. That scene was hilarious.
        I do have a few issues with the film though.  If Earth I is dead, then how in the hell did these people find Jason and Rowan preserved? Weren't they on Earth I?  Or did I miss something?    I also had some issues with a few characters just being annoying, but that's just small complaints. Personally, I think this movie is ridiculously fun, which it knows what kinda movie it is and ain't afraid to show it.   
   Uber Jason looked fucking cool to me.  I loved the outfit and the red eyes. Very cool and badass looking Jason. 
    The music by Harry Manfredini worked liked always.
         The direction by James Isaac was actually pretty good. Jason X was entertaining, hilarious, action packed, and fun. Just the way I like it.
    The acting was also really good. Lisa Ryder was fucking awesome as the fembot Kay-Em 14. Lexa Doig was great as Rowan. Chuck Campbell was hilarious and awesome as Tsunaron. Peter Mensah was a badass as Sgt. Brodski. Derwin Jordan was decent as Waylander. Melyssa Ade was pretty hot as Janessa. Jonathan Potts was okay as Professor Lowe. Dov Tiefenbach was pretty funny as Azrael. And Kane Hodder was badass as always in his last portrayal of Jason Voorhees.  Hodder has gone on to play in various other horror films and is now playing the swamp hatchet slashing maniac Victor Crowley in Adam Green's modern slasher franchise Hatchet.
Overall, Jason X is a ridiculously fun and massively entertaining sci fi/action/horror flick.  A lot of people hate this film, but I personally enjoy it from time to time. Sure, it is cheesy as hell, but that's the beauty of it for me.  This is what it would be like possibly if George Lucas directed a Friday The 13th flick. 
 Looks like Jason is a real icon now. Four-hundred years and he is still killing off care free teens.   We will be rewinding back to 2003 when he took on that sleazy child killer Fredrick "Robert Englund" Krueger. Not so fast, patience my fiends.   I will get to that battle in November when we visit the many tales of the nightmares on Elm Street.  In the next episode, Jason will be re-imagined for a new generation of fans. The Jason story is remade and reborn in 2009's FRIDAY THE 13TH.  So, lock up your cabins because Jason is not over. He has only just begun! HEHEHEHEHEHAHAHAHAHA!!!
2.5/4 STABS


Trick or Treat Pete said...

And here I, cheetah fast from Twitter to here...
The only parts of Jason Goes to Hell I enjoyed was the ending with Freddy reaching up and grabbing JV's mask and the appearance of the necronomicon from the Evil Dead movies...the whole "must be killed by a Vorhees" junk just was plain ridiculous. I tend to call this one...The Jason-less F13. This one seems to be the bastard child of the series and people treat it like they treat the Michael Meyers-less H3(which I don't hate, btw)
Jason X....this was the only other F13 film I went to see...this time at the drive in! This is a perfect drive in movie! I knew to only expect B level acting, gore, and the Big Guy, nothing more...and that's just what it delivered, Jason X didn't try to be something it wasn't, I liked that. It had some moments of humor as well. Uber-Jason looked awesome!
Mike, if you have a drive in ANYWHERE near you, I don't care if you have to drive 5hrs and spend the night in a cheap motel to it! See a cheesy horror or sci fi flick if you can. It's an experience that is fading WAY to quickly from movie lovers.
Dreaded Dreams
Petunia Scareum

Trick or Treat Pete said...

I have just given you the Zombie Rabbit Award!
Dreaded Dreams
Petunia Scareum

Fred [The Wolf] said...

Great reviews, bro! I totally agree with the ratings for each film. Jason Goes to Hell gets a really bad rap. Is it a great film? Nah, but at least it's a nice break from the monotonous Friday the 13th films while kind of staying true to some of the mythology. I do agree with the sibling stuff. Unnecessary plot devices like that piss me off. But the ending is definitely the highlight of that film.

Jason X was a great theater experience. I really dig this film alot. It's so campy and dumb that I find it to be very fun to watch. The freeze death is definitely the best kill in the film. And I love Uber-Jason's design. Just an awesome evolution of the character. I kind of wish they had continued the series from this point. Could have been a lot of fun. Oh well.