Confessions Of A Chopaholic
~ Hello Everyone ~
Welcome To Daniel’s Critical Corner !
Did You Know A Young Boy Drowned Here ?
His name was Jason, and today is his birthday. So, put on your
party hats, blow up a balloon and let’s have a blast ! Just don’t
tell his mom… (She is a good-time killer if ever there was one).
LOL ! Today, of course, I will be talking about Friday the 13th.
A movie I was really looking forward to seeing. Now, you might
be wondering why that is. For starters, I have been a huge fan
of the “Friday the 13th” series since 1982… (That was the year
“Friday the 13th Part 3” came out in glorious 3-D) ! It was an
experience I shall never forget. An experience that turned into
a regular family affair !
My mother has always loved 3-D movies. She likes to reminisce
about some of her favorites from the 1950’s, like “Creature from
the Black Lagoon”, or “House of Wax” (with Vincent Price)… It
was a summer day back in ’82 when we first saw the trailer for
“Friday the 13th Part 3: 3D”, and we both thought it looked like
a hoot and a half ! We had not seen the first two installments,
but that didn’t stop us from making plans to see number three !
This was a big event for me. At age 12, I was about to see my
very first “R” rated picture ! (We were still a few months away
from getting cable television). Of course, later on in the year, I
was bombarded with questionable entertainment after we put in
As an added bonus, my grandparents decided they wanted to
go with us. Grandpa had always loved a real good fright flick !
Keep in mind, his idea of a good fright flick was “Frankenstein
Meets the Wolf Man”.
When we arrived at the theater (Cinema East Twin), they were
showing two films. “Bambi” (the re-release… I’m not that old).
And of course, “Friday the 13th part 3”. My mother, sensing a
right of passage was about to happen, reluctantly asked me if
I would like to see “Bambi” instead of “Friday”. Firmly, I shook
my head “No”.
The four of us were given our 3-D glasses. They were so cool,
in a very cheesy kind of way. They were actually cheap paper
things, featuring some rendition of a bloody fireplace poker on
the sides. RAD ! (Does anybody else remember those) ?
Voorhees A Jolly Good Fellow !
My 80 year old grandparents put on the glasses, as did my mom.
Soon, we were bombarded with buckets of gore galore ! We had
been introduced to mass murderer “Jason Voorhees”, the scourge
of Camp Crystal Lake. I can remember screaming a total of three
times. Mom was shrieking like a banshee the entire film… And my
shocked grandfather kept saying “Oh My God!” and “Goddamn!”
At one point during the flick, a young woman has an arrow shot
right into her head (through her eye socket, no less) ! My poor
grandmother leaned in and asked “Is that girl dead?” I told her
“Yep!”, and Grandma just responded with “Oh dear!”
After the carnage ended, the credits started rolling. My grandpa
actually yelled out “MORE BLOOD” ! I laughed. My Mom did not…
Grandpa had to help her out of her seat ! She was as white as a
ghost !!! I shall never forget, as long as I live, her saying “Dad, I
really need a drink”. As it turned out, NONE of us had EVER seen
an “R” rated horror film before… I loved it. And my grandmother
said (no kidding) “It was a good picture”. Ha Ha ! Go Grandma !
I thought Mom hated it… But it turns out ALL of us became fans
of the franchise. A couple of weeks after our experience we had
rented the first two movies ! My family even went to see “Friday
the 13th: The Final Chapter” on its opening weekend. Everyone
also caught the premiers of “The New Beginning”, “Jason Lives”,
“The New Blood” and “Jason Takes Manhattan” !!!
By the time “Jason X” came out in 2002, my grandparents had
both bought the farm. It was sad seeing it without them. But
I’ve got to say, I’m glad they weren’t around to suffer through
the latest incarnation of “Friday the 13th”. The brand-new film
produced by Michael Bay is a major letdown.
This supposed “remake” shows us the events of the first movie
during the opening credits… Mrs. Voorhees (Jason’s mother) is
given all of three lines, (one of them stating the obvious). She
mentions that she has killed everyone, and that they all had to
die because her stupid little brat drowned. Then, she gets her
head chopped off.
We flash-forward to “present-day”. And that’s when the film
really goes to pot. And by pot, I mean POT. A group of kids
are out in the woods, getting ready to set up camp. They’re
not there to just absorb the scenery, but rather to smoke it.
The gang is hunting for an alleged marijuana farm… And the
“plan” is to grab up as much leaf as they can carry and take
it all back home to sell. (Granted, they want to fill up a few
bongs of their own first). But, some guy with a bag over his
head (Jason) doesn’t want them doing drugs, as he pops out
of nowhere and starts poking them with sharp objects ! He
later ditches the bag. Only to don a hockey mask he finds
on the floor…
Not A Very Good Swimmer.
A Good Swimmer.
(But Not A Very Good Role Model).
Talk about lame. They should have called this film “Cheech
and Chong VS. Jason”. Or “Harold and Kumar Escape Camp
Crystal Lake”. Even “Friday After Next” would have been a
more fitting title !
Another problem with this movie is the amount of sex and
nudity. They overdo it with the boobage. A little boob is
OK. A big boob is even better. But I started to feel as if
I walked into the wrong theater… (I even started to look
around to see if people were wearing trench coats) !!!
There are zero scares in “Friday the 13th”, and the movie
suffers from a total lack of imagination. When the first few
films came out long ago, many critics and cynics saw them
as nothing more than trash, saturated with sex, drugs and
gore. Yes, there was sex (my grandpa actually would do a
“wolf whistle” every time there was some nudity). And yes,
there was always some drug use and ground-breaking gore.
But it was always in small amounts !
What made the original “Friday the 13th” popular was the
horror. A sense of dread, punctuated with “jump out of
your seat moments” !!! They really did try to make movie
magic, and in those days, despite bad reviews, they had
succeeded… It is a shame that 2009’s “reboot” amplifies
the elements that did not work. They must be trying to
prove some of the critics right !
Please, skip this misguided attempt at entertainment, and
go rent the originals (now digitally remastered) !!! I only
wish the director of this new flick would have thought to
do the same…
Dead in the water, “Friday the 13th” just doesn’t cut it.
Would I Recommend This ? No
Daniel’s Critical Rating: “3” out of “10”