Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday The 13th Part 3 - 3/5

I find it humorous that so many folks like to shit on "Friday The 13th Part 3". Really is it that much worse than parts one and two? The first two definitely aren't anything to get all that excited about and I think one thing that "Part 3" has going for it is its odd sense of humor about the entire thing. Its not like we are breaking new ground on a franchise that was already redundant by the beginning of "2", its time to accept it and enjoy it for what it is. A dumb slasher. Bring on the body count!

A group of young people decide to take a nice little summer trip to a house on the outskirts of Crystal Lake. Our leading lady, Chris, had a traumatic experience there years prior at the house and goes back to face her demons. Unfortunately a wounded and pissed off Jason Vorhees has taken refuge in the house's barn and decides to start doing a little hunting while he's there. Of course, our young people are just fodder for the slaughter for our practically supernatural villain. Can any of them survive the onslaught and put Jason to his final resting place...again?

Here's why "Part 3" is probably one of my favorite "Friday The 13th" films: it knows exactly what it is. In fact, it almost magnifies some of its more ridiculous elements to embrace this fact. The characters are even more cliche and out there than before, the story embraces its simple premise almost to cartoonish effect, and the music is more epic and 80s than ever before. Its almost as if the film decided to spoof itself and actually made some of it work. The set up is so odd and off beat at times (bringing in the bikers and their silly subplot for example) that when the film hits its slaughterhouse road sprint towards the end, the extreme violence and clever death sequences balance off the light heartedness of the opening. It works better than expected.

Of course, one thing that does grow even more redundant than the overall story and rather pointless characters getting knocked off in some rather random but clever ways, is the damn 3D moments. Originally released in 3D for theaters, the moments are pretty obvious and come far too often. Shit flies at the screen so often and in so many pointless scenes (the juggling scene or the yo yo scene comes to mind here) that its almost frustrating. STOP IT! WE GET IT! On home video, when its not in 3D its even worse.

Like with all the "Friday The 13th" films, this one has some great moments (like Jason getting his now infamous hockey mask) but its undercut by some of its redundancy and stupidity. Luckily, its oddly humored elements actually make for a fun watching experience and balance out its violent content towards the end. Don't take this one seriously though or its going to make you puke out some IQ.

BONUS RANT: The worst 3D moment isn't even the irrelevant ones. Its the damn title sequence. With its blue background and red zooming font (and off center spacing for the actual title) with the horrendously 80s cliche music, the title sequence sets up some low expectations for the rest of the film. 

Written By Matt Reifschneider

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