A Friday Full Of Fridays: Jason Goes To Hell

Welcome to a Friday Full Of Fridays! In celebration of Friday April 13th, 2012, here at DreadWorld we are going to take a look at each film from the franchises initial run (meaning we are going to ignore Freddy v. Jason and the Remake). I'll be posting a short review, a reviewette if you will, every hour on this momentous day. The posts will be in reverse order of awesomeness, meaning we will be counting backwards from, what I believe to be the worst film in the series, to the film I believe to be the best. Welcome and enjoy the ride!

Moving on to the second entry on out countdown from worst to first. Lets take a look at "Jason Goes To Hell"

Jason Goes To Hell (1993)

The first film in the series to be headed by New Line Studios rather than the traditional Paramount Pictures. Paramount had become disillusioned with the franchise citing diminishing box office returns, battles with the MPAA, and the general apathy with the series. They decided early in the 90's to sell the rights to any future films involving the "Jason" character to New Line, the studio that was basically built on the back of Freddy Krueger. These two horror giants being housed under the same roof immediately wet the appetite for and stirred the pot regarding a possible Freddy versus Jason mash up. That would have to wait though as in instead, New Lines first foray into the Jason Voorhees lore would be this abomination of celluloid.

Everything starts out great in this film. We are back in Crystal Lake. The end of Episode 8 is ignored (more on that in a future installment). There is a shower scene, the FBI raids Jasons "shack" (something I was always in favor of). It's about time the authorities did something about this guy. He's killed and his body is taken to the morgue. He's sliced open by the coroner, so far so good right? Then Richard Gant eats his heart. Wait. What?...Exactly.

"Jason" (and I'll use quotes) is now able to leap from one body to another using some sort of worm. That's right, the hockey masked killer from camp Crystal Lake now jumps from body to body killing anyone who gets in his path. Is he trying to get back to Crystal Lake? Nope. He's trying to kill his half sister, or protect her, who knows, things get really fucked up. Jason want's to be reborn into a new body, the one of his unborn nephew. Turns out we learn that Jason can only really be killed by a blood relative with a special dagger. Jason can only be reborn by a Voorhees and die by the hand of a Voorhees. Christ this is complicated. Remember when it was just about killing stupid kids by a lake? Remember when it was good enough for him to just get struck by lightning?

This film is a mess. Cast members have admitted that even they didn't get the plot. For a film property that once prided itself on the fact that it's watchers didn't really have to think too much while watching, this film is a total 180 in direction. If New Line really wanted to make some serious bank with this film they should have released a plot cheat sheet with the film. "Jason Goes To Hell" make roughly 15 million at the box office, half probably came from people just wanting to see the final scene of the film where Freddys glove pulls Jasons mask down to hell. Another teaser of what would come. But following this disastrous film New Line lost almost all faith in the franchise and took over a decade to pull the trigger on the horror icon dream match up.

It's not all bad here though. Steven Williams is great as bounty hunter Creighton Duke. He's out to kill Jason, by any means necessary and he's got the attitude and the one liners to prove it. The filmmakers really do need to be given some credit for trying something new. It was just the wrong property at the wrong time. The idea of evil being able to leap from body to body is something that would actually work a few years later in the very underrated Denzel Washington vehicle "Fallen." But as a Friday the 13th film it just doesn't work. Throw in the whole "reborn" and "ancient knife" thing and we have the second worst Friday film ever.

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