Isaacs Picture Conclusions


These rankings are internally relative to the franchise as a whole (not the overall library of movies).

Friday the 13th (1980) 3 Hockey Masks (instead of Top Hats) 

Mostly because it scared the beejezus out of my friend Jason and I (I think it was Jason, I would hate to incriminate him in the following crime) when we snuck into the theater it was in. I watched it again a year or so later on VHS and it did the trick too. I watched it a year ago again and it didn’t really stand up so well. Isaacs Arcanum: In this movie Jason Voorhees is not the killer.

Friday the 13th Part 2   

 I didn’t see this one in the theater, but caught it about the same time I watched the first one in the VCR. I remember this one not being too terrifying either. Somehow the dead boy from the bottom of the lake (Jason V) is now a beefed up, grown man skulking about taking revenge for the death of his mother, whose corpse is done up shrine-like in his shitty cabin on the lake. I don’t remember how long after the first one this is supposed to take place, but he went from little mutated dead boy returned to life as burly killer awful quick. Isaacs Arcanum: Jason does not wear the infamous hockey mask in this one, just a creepy, dirty burlap sack.
Friday the 13th Part 3(D!) 

This one started a theater run for me, through number 9.  I remember those wonderful red and green 3-D glasses we wore then to see the amazing world of three dimensional boobs and shovels and knives and pitchforks.  I don’t remember anything special about this except for the fateful hockey mask scene and the stupid ending where Jason’s mom jumps up out of the lake, resurrected like Jason was at the end of the first one.

Friday the 13th (Part 4) The Final Chapter  

This is the one with Crispin Glover and Corey Feldman. Jason is presumed dead again after he’s killed-to-death at the end of the third one. OOOPS – NOT! He makes his way back to the lake area where there lives a nice, peaceful family (the Feldman’s) and a rent cabin (I think) with some partying it up, pot smoking, beer drinking, doing-it teenagers. Jason eventually hacks most of them up before Feldman (the character is named Tommy Jarvis) hacks off his hair and pretends to be Jason as a kid and then hacks the real Jason to eternal death with a machete. The franchise is over… but not really. This, to me, is one of the better ones of the series.

Friday the 13th (Part 5) A New Beginning 

Tommy Jarvis returns as a psychologically F-d up teenager (the new actor has got to be in his 20s) who barely says anything and makes scary latex masks. He is sent to a halfway house of some sort with lots of nubile 80’s teens, and an 80’s version of a kid with some sort of mental handicap (who eats chocolate bars and smears chocolate on everything). This poor fellow is done in with an axe by a mean ole dude chopping wood. When the paramedics are called, one of them is extremely upset at the murder of this poor child. Soon, bodies are piling up all over this small town and it’s assumed its Tommy masquerading as Jason.  After 90 minutes the killer is disposed of and Tommy is even more F’d up – setting up more sequels! Isaacs Arcanum:  This feature’s an actor named Miguel Nunez who would show up in the wickedly awesome Return of the Living Dead that same year.

Friday the 13th (Part 6) Jason Lives  

My absolute favorite of the entire franchise! I remember (when  I was out in California) having a full page ad for this from the L.A. Times tacked to my wall for the entire summer. This was a big budget F-13th and it really showed. Tommy returns again (played by the lead from Return of the Living Dead – wearing, I think, the same suspenders from ROTLD) with none other than his institution buddy, Horshack from Welcome Back Kotter – YAY!! The latest Tommy wants to dig up Jason’s body and burn it to ashes once and for all, ending this forever. Unfortunately, since they are exhuming the maggot and worm ridden corpse during a brutal rainstorm, after he punctures the corpse in furious rage a few times, lightning strikes the metal rod he was using and Jason Voorhees is resurrected like Frankenstein!! Sadly Horshack suffers a cruel fate – but the story goes on! Eventually Tommy sends Jason to his latest eternal demise at his “final resting place” – back in the bottom of Crystal Lake, forever and ever and ever amen. This was my favorite Jason – the “super strong, zombie supernatural” Jason who really gave it to them good and blood splattered EVERYWHERE. Not to mention, this also included a “soundtrack” of sorts by Alice Cooper with one of my favorite songs of the 80’s “He’s Back (the man behind the mask)”!

(Note: while writing these up over the weekend, I had a hint of nostalgia and watched a few of these on Saturday and Sunday {so a few of them might be more detailed than the others}). (And then, most of the week…).

Friday the 13th (Part 7) The New Blood   

The Tommy Jarvis era is over and we now meet a young girl with psychic powers named Tina Shepard whose drunken (again) daddy hits his mom (again) at their lake house out on good ole Crystal Lake. In a rage, she psychically brings the dock down on him and ends his drunken life. Some seventeen or eighteen years later, mom and daughter and unscrupulous Dr. Crews (stiff Bernie from the Weekend at Bernie’s movies) arrive for some therapy to release teenage Tina from her internal horrors. Lucky for us all there’s a rent cabin next door with some hard partyin’, dope smokin’, sexin’ teenagers who all wear pants buttoned above their belly buttons. In a fit of sadness, Tina psychically resurrects her dead dad from the bottom of the lake – no wait; it’s Jason Voorhees who has returned from the depths!  As he goes through offing them all (this time using power tools) we get the even-more-zombie Jason with bones sticking through his rotted out skin. Eventually, at the Mt. Vesuvius erupting climax, Tina indeed resurrects her dad from the depths (a strikingly fresh looking / non water eroded dad) who, paying homage to the ends of Parts 1, 3 and 6, jumps out of the water, grabs Jason and they both sink to their eternal demise. Cut! That’s a wrap!

My favorite part of this offering: Snob girl likes the stud dude, who likes psychic Tina. At about 70 minutes or so, even with everyone dead all around the cabins, snob girl confronts the other two in one of the cabins. They tell her not to go outside for God’s sake – there’s a killer on the loose!! . In a jealous rage she nastily rebukes them and says, “You guys give me the creeps.” To which, Mr. Voorhees subsequently busts through the front door and dispatches her forever.

Friday the 13th (Part Eight) Jason Takes Manhattan 

Oh boy – this one starts off with a bang.  A couple of partyin’ teens on a boat drop anchor into Crystal Lake and hit an underwater electric line; BLAMMO, Jason is Frankenstein resurrected again. But this time… he’s not water rotten black and gnarled, but white and gnarled (must be lime buildup) – AND the discerning viewer will notice he’s got one normal finger sticking out of those gloves… also, we have a synthesizer score, lots of big hair and a group of high school graduates taking a boat ride from somewhere that looks like Nova Scotia (it’s supposed to be Crystal Lake) to visit New York! Let the fun begin!  ~ 89 Minutes later ~ WTF?!? This thing is terrible! I remember now why I didn’t like it back in 1989.  On this boat, after the pre-described sequences,  we get strange Jason-kills,  strange acting, strange “what’s-going-on?” flashbacks,  WHY-O-WHY  “out-on-the-high-seas” footage,  lots of bad acting from a guy in TV shows since the 1950s, worse acting from everyone else, and then, after they abandon ship in a terrible, terrible sea storm, they row themselves ashore in NEW YAAAAAAAWRK (York). What happens after this is even worse.  Jason is suddenly three places at once; now, in the previous movies he has SEEMED three places at once but here he’s chasing someone, then upstairs before the guy can get there, then back downstairs (he must be able to teleport). The good looking lead has some sort of psychic connection with Jason (this is alluded to through the movie  and lame), they are chased through slummy diners, slummy subway stations, the slummy underground, and eventually, end up in the sewer.  So, now, trapped in the sewage facilities, they meet a doomed man who tells them “they flood the New York sewers every night with toxic waste”. All right. Doomed man gets killed, Jason gets doused with a tub of “toxic waste”, his mask burns off, New York City floods the tunnels, and “Toxie” is done forever.  Let’s wrap this thing up, it’s miserable.  And CUT – there is NO WAY JayVee is coming back from this one!

Jason Goes to Hell – The Final Friday (Friday the 13th (Part 9)

I guess this is a “reboot”,  1993 style, of the franchise  after the disappointing Jason Takes Manhattan. Now – I write “disappointing”, but I think it made loads of money. Anyway, forgetting the last movie(s) Jason is once again at Crystal Lake in a sting by the FBI or CIA or OSS. Either way, Jason is lured out into the open by a nude woman, and is subsequently blown to pieces. We assume he’s deadsville but, during his autopsy, his black, beating heart allures the coroner who –YUP – eats it and is overcome by the “spirit of Jason Voorhees”.  I don’t want this review to go too long, but this thing is chock full of folks I (and my wife) have seen in numerous movie and TV since 1993.  There’s Erin Grey from Buck Rogers of my childhood (mmmmmmmmmm),  a guy that played prominently on Deadwood season two,  and another fellow who was usually on  Will and Grace, to name a few. Also, we now have the original F-13 director as producer, a new production company (New Line), a big budget,  Erin Grey and a soul transferring, murderous, killing JayVee spirit going from one person to “anyone else”. Sweet action ensues. This was actually pretty darn good until the final twenty minutes. We get some grizzly deaths, some cool slo-mo, and a bunch of naked chicks. The purpose of the “Spirit of Voorhees”… hmmm… Jason’s spirit is trying to rebirth himself, but the only way to do this is to put the spirit into another Voorhees. JASON HAS A SISTER! Who has a daughter, who just had a baby. Dum ta dum.  What put me off of this one is that, when Jason’s spirit-turned-creepy-crawly-lizard-looking-thing crawls up his dead sister’s wahina, he morphs into a fully grown, grotesque, hockey mask wearing mo-fo, not just the dead sister’s body  – huh? Oh well. Turns out the sister’s daughter, Jason’s niece, has the power to turn an ordinary dagger into a magical sword that dispatches Uncle Voorhees to hell – forever! Cut, end of franchise! Well – the closing shot is the hockey mask lying in the dirt when Freddy Krueger’s knifey glove comes up from the abyss and snatches it down, to hell we presume.

Friday the 13th (Part 10) Jason X  

This one came out recently enough that I didn’t even bother re-watching this bilge. Let’s see, Jason went to hell in the last installment, right? At the end of “9”, Freddie Krueger’s glove came out and grabbed the mask, setting up the crossover fans had been wanting for, for years. Well, before Freddie v.  Jason was produced, we got this.  Let’s think back – the movie (I believe) opens to a chained up (again) Voorhees, in some sort of “prison” where he is being evaluated in some way by some lame researcher. Something happens and they are all cryogenically frozen. Wonderful. Some 400 or so years later, after the Earth has been abandoned, the Earth 2 people come scavenging and thaw Jason and his researcher.  Yawns entail. Eventually Jason ends up on the space ship vis-à-vis:  Jason Takes Manhattan,  is killed, is rebuilt by “reconstruction droids”, turns into “space Jason” (which is SOOOOOOOO LAME I CAN’T EVEN BELIEVE IT), kills everyone and lands on ”Earth 2 Crystal Lake” to “start again”. SUCK.

I don’t even want to put “Isaacs Arcanum” on this, but: The Jason X is called “Uber Jason” because, I guess, his shit-ass looking mask and outfit. THBTHBTHBTHBTHBTHBTHBTHBTHB.

Freddie vs Jason (Part 11 so to speak) 

Well, they tried, I suppose. I am sure it is very difficult for some director or writer or production company to successfully combine two franchises and make it work for both sets of fans. I was never really into the Nightmare on Elm Street movies, so, of course, I was rooting for Jason in this one, but I think the people responsible for this went the other way. We were lead to believe that Uncle Voorhees had been consigned to hell the last time he was realistically in front of us, partying it up with Freddie Krueger (who I wouldn’t know why he’s  down below to begin with). Apparently Fred can’t do the things he does because all of the kids on Elm Street have forgotten about him, SO – he brings Jason back from the dead, the dead being a decayed corpse whose heart starts beating until he is once more alive. Somehow Jason must have been dreaming while his body was wasting away to dust and Fred, acting like Voorhees’ momma, commands him to kill again! See, this way the people of Elm Street will think it’s ole Freddie and remember him again, then he can invade their dreams and terrorize them to their graves. Along he way we get the girl who played Ginger in the Ginger Snaps trilogy, John Ritter’s son and the hard ass black chick (imagine Tara from True Blood) who teases Krueger about his small weenie. Eventually the two bad guys face off in Crystal Lake, and, I won’t ruin it, someone meets their end finally, after long last.

The only thing really remarkable about this one is the amount of blood spilt in this thing. It has to be the bloodiest of them all. I suppose I should mention that, for some reason, in this one Jason is AFRAID of the water, which Fred uses to cripple him into a little crying kid – pretty stupid IMHO.

Friday the 13th (2009) 

I had some really high hopes for this thing (and it didn’t disappoint me). A few months after the release of the My Bloody Valentine remake (which I LOVED), came the “reboot” of the F-13 franchise with a grisly new Jason, sharp new effects, modern day camera work, modern day music AND modern day clothing – WHOOP WHOOP! Just like in “MBV” we have modern teeny actors from things like The OC and Supernatural and the like – but unlike the actors in “MBV” who really looked and performed well, the folks in Friday really brought the movie down for me. It wasn’t the script so much, it was the level of annoyance they gave me throughout both viewings of the movie – I hated them all and was happy when they were consigned to history forever.

The first set of campers sets up camp at the creepy, abandoned Crystal Lake where the legend of Jason Voorhees is told (I presume for  the modern age generation  who can witness the franchise reboot). Soon enough, they are all deep-sixed in one way or another by the pre-mask Jason…  or are they?? Before the next carnage begins there is a weird interlude about some Mary Jane, (maybe Jason is actually a secluded, hermit mari-ja-wana farmer) the appearance of the mask and a buildup of a guy looking for his sister who was out camping (the first group of campers). We then follow the new group of irritating teens to a cabin, we follow the brother and one of the second groups around the woods, Jason makes them all pay for their crimes against our viewing eyes and then, before too long, it’s over with – YESSSSSS and end-shot of Jason jumping up through the water and nabbing the lone survivor.

All in all – it was pretty good, aside from the crappy, irritating acting. This new Jason is fast and strong, instead of slow and strong and isn’t a “zombie”. I was very pleased with the clothing (and the lack of) and, aside from Jason keeping a hostage in some cave for two (I think) years (what did she eat and where did she dook), it was as believable as the “good” F-13s from our past.

When this movie opened strong there was immediate talk of a sequel, which I think is stalling because of stupid Michael Bay – but – there was rumor the sequel would be set in some sort of snow setting – which would be a first!

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