Director: Steve Miner
The early 80′s saw a resurgence in 3D horror, as big name franchises such as Jaws & Amittyville Horror headed to the 3rd dimension. However, the only film that’s stood the test of time, and has kicked ass in both the 3rd and 2nd dimension is Friday The 13th Part 3D. Steve Miner is back to direct, picking up right where his previous film left off. Jason removes the machete, and probably doesn’t do a very good job at first-aid before he heads off, I’d imagine. Now, do know, to get the full experience I watched this film in 3D, no pussy-footing around for me.
We start off with a nice-recap, as we did in part 2. A few miles down the road, a shop keeper and his wife are shutting down for the evening, unaware that Jason has stopped by in hopes of a moonlight madness sale. He swipes a shirt and pair of pants that are hanging on the wire, and just to make sure he doesn’t have to give’em back, he drives a meat clever into the shop keepers chest. The wife is bitching to no end, so Jason opts for the knitting needle to the dome. If she’d just shut up about the doughnuts, he probably would have let it go.
A new gang arrives here at Crystal Lake, or near it. I mean, these guys have to be so fucking stupid. The biggest murder spree in the east coast’s history has just happened in this very area, WITH the killer at large, and on there way they see cops & ambulances at a store. Were the deals on Priceline THAT LOW? Could they not pass up the deal, and just had to take the risk? It’s absurd. Well, I’m thankful for their thriftyness because without we wouldn’t have a film. They’re of course warned by an old crazy guy who’s sleeping in the middle of the road, and even him brandishing a freaking eyeball doesn’t stop them. Man, there was no way in hell they were going to lose their deposit on the cabin, was there?
Now, our main character, Chris, had a traumatic event happen to her a few years back, as she was attacked by Jason in an attempted murder. Some think Jason may have been trying to arrange romantic going-ons, but I’m not sure. I mean, I imagine Jason had a rockin’ boner, but I think it was just a boner he had for killing, not for sex. Either way, everyone knows about it, so what’s her boyfriend do when she arrives? He jumps out of nowhere, grabs her and starts kissing, then wonders why she’s all up in arms. I take boyfriend ques from Rick, too. I had a girlfriend who was in a hostage in a bank robbery, so on our first date I cut the power to her house, then crept inside in a ski mask with a gun and demanded all of her money, plus what was in the vault! Also, Rick waits about 10 seconds before begging for sex. Are we sure he wasn’t the rapist 2 years prior?
Shelly and Vera head to the store in Rick’s Volkswagen, only to get hassled by some biker folk. The one named Ali, was also in an 80′s masterpiece known as Fright Night. He was killed by Jerry Dandrige in the club scene, and he doesn’t have much luck at Crystal Lake either. They mess with Shelly & Vera for no good reason, and then Shelly accidentally hits their bikes when leaving. This prompts one of them to get all sorts of pissed, beating the hell out of Rick’s car. This pisses off Shelly and he runs over their bikes as revenge. Well, the bikers follow them back to the ranch and decide they want to burn down the barn, as they attacked and taunted Shelly & Vera for no good reason, and now Shelly & Vera gotta pay! Foxy heads into the barn and get’s the pitchfork, which the barn seems to be in abundance of, because the other guy gets one too. Ali comes in, gets pissed about his friends, so in order to get revenge he gets hit in the face with a hachet like 36 times.
Later that evening, after Chris & Rick have gone off to a romantic hang out, Shelly wants to put the moves on Vera, but she isn’t getting turned on with the juggling he’s been doing. So, instead he acts real meek, and pathetic, asking Vera if she likes him. She shuts him down, and in classic nerd fashion, he calls her a bitch. Amen, Shelly, amen. Well, in order to get her to like him, he hides underneath a dock and scares the fuck out of her. The scare wasn’t necessary, really. All he needed was the scuba suit, as it shows off his ripped B-Cup. Dejected, he saunters off to the barn, where so many bury their sorrows, such as Jason. But instead of burying I mean planting into someone’s chest, and instead of sorrows, I mean farm equipment.
After Shelly leaves, Vera finds his wallet and accidentally drops it in the lake, then makes an attempt to retrieve it. It’s at this moment that Jason makes his debut with the hockey mask. This is a classic kill, obviously, but the part I love about it is Jason’s non-chalantness. I mean, he seriously just saunters on over, shoots, drops it like a bag of rocks and walks off like an old farmer on a dirt road. It’s awesome.
Andy & Debbie get done doing it, so Debbie takes a shower. Andy starts walking around on his hands like a fucking dork, and Jason just isn’t having it. I think Andy would have survived, but this was like the 23rd time Jason had seen him doing this, and was really sick of it. Great! You can walk on your fucking hands! You’re extremely athletic! MACHETE TO THE DICK!
Chris and Rick try to head back to the cabin, but the Volkswagen doesn’t work. This is the 2nd film by Steve Miner, in a row, that has a broken Volkswagen. What’s the deal? Did a Volkswagen salesmen sleep with Miner’s wife or something? Well, they head back and things don’t seem that cool. Rick proves how useless his blue sweater is as Jason crushes his head. It’d be a lot cooler if they didn’t go for the 3D eyeball gag, because man does it look fake. But at the same time, that’s the charm of it, and it’s great.
It’s at this point that the film really, really picks up. The first 2 acts are a bit boring, but the 3rd act, with the chase/fight scene between Chris & Jason is absolutely fantastic. I think it’s probably the 2nd best of the series. Jason is intimidating as hell, and loves to fuck with people. I mean, most people announce themselves via voice, Jason does via your boyfriend’s dead body through the window. AWESOME. How could you not love that? We eventually get to the centerpiece of the film, the barn. Chris manages to elude Jason by an inch the whole time before she finally gets one up on him by hanging him outside the barn.
When she tries to leave the barn, Jason plays Mystery Date with her as he reveals that he was the guy in the woods years prior. Well, this just about break’s Chris’ sanity as she recoils in horror. He starts his approach to finish the job, when Ali pops out of no where, despite Jason smashing him in the face with a hatchet earlier. Well, Ali was taught to sneak up on people by a jet engine or something, because he yells like he’s on fire before striking Jason. He turns around and hacks Ali to shit. Then, to show what a tunnel-vision having bad-ass he is, he keeps butchering the hell out of him, thus giving Chris the chance to grab the axe and plant it right into Jason’s face. But you think that stops him?
HA! He’s still rockin’, but gets a bit sleepy and collapses. Chris, instead of heading to safety, or calling the police, or doing ANYTHING that would make sense, instead opts to just head out onto a boat. Are you serious? Who on Earth would do this? I mean, at the end of part 4, Tommy doesn’t stop chopping Jason then go chill on a Barka-lounger. Tina from part 7 doesn’t inflate an air-mattress and take a cat-nap after her father comes back from the dead and drags Jason under-water. Please, for anyone reading this, call the damn police when something like this happens.
They then pay homage to the original by having Jason’s mother leap out of the lake and drag Chris down. It’s a pretty sweet visual, and not one you’d expect. But, like the first, it’s just a dream.
All in all, part 3 is pretty good. The characters aren’t that interesting, to be honest, and are VERY stock for an 80′s horror film. Jason has some rad kills here, but isn’t as menacing as he is in others, except for the 3rd act, where the film really shines. The 3D effect is pretty awesome, to be honest. I was using a DVD, on a blu-ray player and an HD TV. The gags, where something comes at the screen weren’t that great. The images would ghost, and be a bit out of focus, but everything else was awesome. It truly felt like I was looking out a window. The environments were rich, and deep looking.
The Official Slasher-Movie Encyclopedia Tally:
Foot Chase: 1
Fake Out Scares: 8
Car Stall: 1
Warned But No Belief?: Yeap, with an eye-ball to boot.
Released on August, Friday the 13th, 1982, by Paramount Pictures into 1,079 theaters. Part 3D won it’s weekend, coming in at #1 with a total of $9,406,522, and a theater average of $8,717. It cost them 2.5 million to produce this one. I’d imagine a good chunk of that went to the 3D production. But, it paid off because they ended up bringing in almost 37 million dollars. IMDB says the budget was 4 mill, but the booklet that comes with the latest Friday The 13th box-set says 2.5, so, we’ll go with the box-set.
Things You Need To Know In Order To Survive:
The film was first released August, Friday the 13th, 1982. It was then re-released May, Friday The 13th, 1983. Pretty smart move if you ask me, as it could have only done well.
Not counting the flash-backs from part 2, the name Jason is never mentioned in this film.
Larry Zerner, who plays Shelly, was handing out fliers for a horror film when the producers spotted him and offered him an audition for Friday 3.
The house, barn, and lake were all built for the movie. None of it was pre-existing.
When Rick & Chris leave the cabin, you can see the film crew in the passenger window of the Volkswagen.
Paul Kratka, who plays Rick, originally auditioned for the role of Andy, but I guess he seemed more like the type to beg a traumatized rape victim for constant sex.
4 Head-Butts out of 5
This one isn’t talked about a lot, other than the whole 3d aspect. I think it’s a bit deserved, as I said, the first half of the film is kinda boring. There isn’t much of Jason, and he’s just hanging out in his bachelor pad. Once it gets dark though, and he gets his mask, we’re off to the races. Still, at the end of the day, a good entry, and a great reason why Jason was such a big deal in the 80′s.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to read my entry last week, and to those who commented. I always love to hear feedback from folks. I was thinking about maybe doing a little Q&A session before each entry from now on. So, if you guys want to email me with a Friday related question, or observation, no matter the entry in the series, send it on it and we’ll discuss it here.