Saturday, September 8, 2012

Friday The 13th Part 3 (1982)

     After Ginny Fields is taken off to the hospital following her vicious confrontation with the legendary Jason Voorhees, the Crystal Lake slasher pulls the machete out of his shoulder and gets up.  Jason arrives at a grocery store ran by some annoying married couple after magically getting a haircut and a good shave (?).  Since this is a slasher film, Jason naturally kills the chubby man and his nagging bitch of a wife.  The next day, Chris Higgins and her friends (Andy, Debbie, Chili (?), Chuck, Shelly, Rick, and Vera) arrive at Higgins Haven where they plan to spend the weekend care free and totally stereotypical Friday The 13th victims.   While at a store, Shelly manages to piss off a motorcycle gang consisting of Ali, Fox, and Loco by running over their bikes after they have harassed Vera.  The gang follows Shelly and Vera back to Higgins Haven, where they plan to steal gas out of Chris' van, but end up being killed by Jason in the barn behind Chris' cabin , who has also come to join the party.  That night while Chris and her boyfriend Rick are out spending some alone time together to talk, the others are killed off one by one.  Chris finally confronts a hockey masked Jason Voorhees, who she had escaped from two years prior.

           In 1980, an independent horror film titled Friday The 13th was all the buzz amongst horror fans. There were very awesome and creative murders, a somewhat creepy atmosphere of seclusion, and a great jump scare in the final act.  Then, studios began to cash in on this new wave of slice 'em up dead teen flicks.  We got a slew of slasher flicks in 1980. Then in 1981,  just one year after the original Friday The 13th, Paramount Pictures cashed in on its success by releasing Friday The 13th Part 2, which brought Jason into the franchise as the killer to follow in his demented mother's footsteps.  The sequel did very well at the box office, which meant one thing. To make another one.  At the time, 3D was becoming a big thing with various franchises and  other films. Many studios agreed that horror would be the perfect genre to test out flying objects coming right at a screaming audience.   Unfortunately, most of these films were pretty bad (Amityville 3D is a prime example).   Paramount Pictures decided to make Friday The 13th Part 3 in 3D to add a little bit of spice to their already successful teen horror franchise.    My biggest issue with 3D aside from most of the time looking silly is that more often  studios will use the gimmick to sell a movie that has no substance (The Final Destination).  From what I have heard, Friday The 13th Part 3 looks awesome in 3D in a movie theater. Unfortunately for me, I have never seen this movie in its true 3D format, unless you count that crappy 3D transfer on the special edition DVD that came out a year or two back.  So, I will be reviewing this movie according to its 2D format.

          The story to Friday The 13th Part 3 is basically the same story as the previous two installments, but instead of being at a summer camp, we're at a cabin that this group of friends are staying at for the weekend.   Basically, the only thing that usually changes in these films are the victims, the look of Jason, and the kills.  Martin Kitrosser and Carol Watson wrote a pretty average Friday The 13th screenplay here.    I personally thought that the victims in this installment were better than the ones in Part 2.  All of these characters are one dimensional as usual except for Shelly and Chris.    Andy and Debbie are obviously the couple that is sexually active. Chuck and Chili are the two stoners who are somewhat a couple I guess. Rick is the typical boyfriend character to the heroine.  Shelly, while a practical joker, is the one character that I could actually relate to oddly enough. The guy is a loner who just wants people to like him and just wants to feel like a part of the group.  Everyone basically kinda ignores the guy, so he feels that the only way that he can feel a part of the gang is to play jokes on his friends. I feel bad for the guy. Maybe it's because I've felt exactly how he does before.   I know what it's like to feel left out and have joked around to try to get people to like having me around. Poor guy.  Too bad Jason killed him to steal his fucking awesome hockey mask. Vera was hot I thought, but the character was pretty one dimensional like most Friday characters.  She did have a nice ass though. Damn!  Chris was pretty likeable as the heroine of the movie. She wasn't as bland as Alice, but at the same time not as strong as Ginny. She was a hottie though and I bought it when she lost her mind at the end. Kinda reminded me of Marilyn Burns as Sally Hardesty in the original The Texas Chainsaw Massacre where she started laughing hysterically at the end of the movie.  She did give Jason a nasty gash in the head with that axe.

      And then there was the trio motorcycle gang.  These guys didn't really do much, but were douche bags and then got killed in the barn by Jason.  Speaking of Jason, I loved him in this movie.  My only issue is what happened to his half deformed mountain man look from Part 2 with the long hair and beard?  I loved the addition of the hockey mask and he definitely makes a hockey mask look fucking cool.

       Now for the best part of any Friday The 13th film: the KILLS!   I pretty much was digging most of the kills in this film.   They were definitely a step up from Part 2.  We get a pitch fork through this woman's throat, holding her off the ground. There's also a nice scene where one of the bikers gets stabbed all the way through with a rake.  Jason pays a homage to his mother by hiding underneath a hammock and stabbing a girl up through her chest with his machete while she is reading an issue of FANGORIA!   The most gruesome kill is where Jason whacks this guy right between the legs with his machete while the dude is doing a hand stand.   A guy gets electrocuted and a girl gets stabbed with a hot fire poker.   Harpoon gun to the eyeball was really cool too. My favorite was when Jason crushed this guy's head so hard that his eyeball popped right out of the socket. While the eyeball did look fake by today's standards, I'm sure that kill had people screaming who saw this movie in 3D back in 1982.  All in all, more than decent kills I thought.

      I have to mention the music in this installment of the franchise. What was up with the whole techno opening credits music? It's pretty amusing and very easy to dance too. Just ask my buddy Fred (The Wolf).  Harry Manfredini is fucking awesome.

       There are some problems that I have with the film though. The biggest is all of the 3D shots in 2D. I know that these shots probably look really cool in 3D, but in 2D they were extremely distracting.    Again, what happened to Jason's full set of hair and beard from Part 2?  This is supposed to be the NEXT day. Did he just cut it all off with his bloody machete?  Speaking of the next day, this is Saturday The 14th. But, I can forgive them for that since in Crystal Lake, everyday is a FRIDAY THE 13TH!   And then there was the scene where Chili discovers that Shelly is really dead and here's her reaction:

         " Andy! Debbie! Shelly is dead! He's REALLY dead! Oh my God! Oh my God!!!"

           The boo scare at the end was a rip off of the original's ending except instead of a young Jason, we get a rotted corpse of Mrs. Pamela Voorhees. AND SHE HAS HER FUCKING HEAD ATTACHED TO HER BODY!  

         The direction by Steve Miner who also directed Part 2 was better in my opinion this time around. No more cutting too early before actually seeing the kills. 


          The acting is decent in this film for the most part. Dana Kimmell is decent as Chris Higgins, the heroine of the film. She's no Amy Steele, but she was a step up from Alice.  I liked it at the end when she was in shock from what had happened to her and her friends. Plus, I liked the fact that she had escaped Jason before when she was younger. That flashback did kinda give me the creeps the first time I saw this film when I was a kid.  Paul Kratka was alright as the token boyfriend character Rick and his death really was an eye popper. Traci Savage was sexy as Debbie and had nice boobs. Jeffrey Rogers was okay as Andy. Catherine Parks was pretty hot as Vera and had a fine ass. Larry Zerner was very relatable as Shelly. I liked him a lot and felt sorry for the guy.  David Katims and Rachel Howard got stoned as Chuck and Chili. Nick Savage, Gloria Charles, and Kevin O'Brien were decent at playing the bikers Ali, Fox, and Loco.  And Richard Brooker was pretty good as Jason. I still prefer Ted White, C.J. Graham, and Kane Hodder though. All in all, not a bad cast at all.

         Overall, Friday The 13th Part 3 is an alright sequel.  It's entertaining and fun, but looks silly in some areas since the 3D gimmick is now in 2D.   If only they had this Real D technology back in the early '80s huh?  Aside from the 3D gimmick, this film is mainly known for Jason receiving his iconic trade mark hockey mask for the first time.  Watch out Michael, Jason has his own mask now!


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