FRIDAY THE 13TH movies for this column – oh, what I go through for you people – I thought it might be a good idea to check out the most recent incarnation of the franchise, producer Michael Bay and director Marcus Inspel’s reboot/reimagining of the original film.
Plot synopsis: teenagers go into the woods near Crystal Lake, party, have sex, and die violently at the hands – and various sharp implements – of a human killing machine wearing a hockey mask. There’s nothing new here. The script rather deftly combines elements of the first four original FRIDAY flix, streamlines the Jason Voorhees backstory, and spices it up with some inventive kills and good, old-fashioned gratuitous nudity. The new film is a slick, fast-paced slash and stalk that doesn’t reinvent Jason for the 21st Century; rather, it gives the old boy a jolt of adrenaline. It’s fun.
I got my hands on the bare bones, "Killer Cut" DVD for this review. The New Line disc presents the film in an excellent 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer, accompanied by a startling 5.1 Dolby Surround audio mix. The only features on this edition are an entertaining documentary, "The Rebirth of Jason Voorhees," and a selection of "slashed" scenes.
So, is it worth checking out? Well, if you’re a fan of the series, sure. It’s no worse than any of the original films in the franchise, and it’s technically superior to all of them. It does deliver all the thrills, violence and sexual content that made those movies memorable – and profitable – and unlike some of Bay’s other horror remakes, it’s respectful to the original material. It’s not high art, but these kinds of movies rarely are. It’s entertaining and never boring, and that’s all it needs to be.
BUY: Friday the 13th : Killer Extended Cut : Widescreen Edition