Freddy Vs. Jason Reviewby Terri Clark (TerriClark4 AT aol DOT com)
August 20th, 2003
Freddy Vs. Jason -- A Bloody Good Time
West Life News (8/20/03)
Review by: Terri Clark
This death match has been ten years in the making. When New Line Cinema put "Freddy Vs. Jason" on their development slate in 1993, horror fans were elated,
but finding a solid script that pit the two horror movie legends against each other turned out to be a hellacious task. Just as everyone was beginning to believe these indestructible icons had died after all, the screenwriting team of Mark Swift and Damian Shannon pitched a fresh take on the skirmish between these serial thrillers. Three years later they make their screenwriting debut when "Freddy Vs. Jason" hits theaters.
How does this nightmare go? Child murderer Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) was burned to death by vigilante parents. He exacts revenge on their kids by killing them in their dreams. Freddy's "New Nightmare" ('94) sent him to Hell where he's remained powerless. It seems the parents of Springwood have been drugging their teens with Hypnocil, a dream suppressant. No nightmares on Elm Street, no Freddy. If the kids don't have bad dreams, he's an impotent monster.
So what does Freddy do? He resurrects Jason (Ken Kirzinger) so he can wreak havoc on the town until Freddy can regain his strength. Call it Voorhees Viagra. The hockey-masked menace who kills counselors at Camp Crystal Lake on Friday the 13th is back from space (01's "Jason X") and all too happy to terrorize on new turf. The problem comes when Freddy's back to his bad self and
wants to take over, but Jason won't stop his killing spree. As one character succinctly put it, "Dude, that goalie was pissed about something." Freddy's not
one to share his slaughters, so the ultimate monster mash begins. It's Freddy's
brain versus Jason's brawn, claw versus machete and "winner kills all."
Thanks to director Ronny Yu ("Bride of Chucky") this "nightmare on Friday the 13th" is a bloody good time. And I do mean bloody. Twice the bad guys, twice the blood. The gore is hard-core and there are enough startle moments to make the audience look like popping corn. The clever script tied the characters stories together very well. Even if you've never seen any of the films in either franchise, you won't be lost. Chances are this Evil Vs. Evil premise will create a new franchise similar to the old "King Kong Vs. Godzilla" ('62) or "Dracula Vs. Frankenstein" ('71) movies. In fact, "Alien Vs. Predator" is already slated for release in August of 2004. However, "Freddy Vs. Jason" has set a pretty high bar for this kind of slasher showdown. In addition to a good,
fast-paced script, with some classic one-liners, "Freddy Vs. Jason" surprises with a horror movie rarity…decent actors. Monica Keena ("Orange County") and Jason Ritter ("Swimfan") do a respectable job in their lead roles, Destiny Child's Kelly Rowland is terrific as tough girl Kia and Kyle Labine gives a hilarious impression of Jason Mewes' stoner character, Jay. It goes without saying that Robert Englund is devilishly delicious as Freddy. As for Ken Kirzinger, well, he lumbers with the best of them as Jason, but fan favorite Kane Hodder should've been the one to don the mask.
Now if you're wondering who wins this battle of the baddies, that's easy…it's the horror movie fans. Not the answer you're looking for? Sorry. If I tell you,
one of them is liable to take my head off. All you have to know for sure is that "Freddy Vs. Jason" is pure entrailstainment.
Movie Facts Sidebar
Title: Freddy Vs. Jason
Rating: R for pervasive strong horror violence/gore, gruesome images, sexuality, drug use and language.
Distributor: New Line Cinema
Director: Ronny Yu
Screenplay: Damian Shannon & Mark Swift
Cast: Robert Englund, Ken Kirzinger, Monica Keena, Jason Ritter, Kelly Rowland
Time: 97 min
Terri Clark ([email protected]) is a freelance movie critic. She writes reviews for West Life News, Moviefone.com and the Apollo Guide.
Originally posted in the rec.arts.movies.reviews newsgroup. Copyright belongs to original author unless otherwise stated. We take no responsibilities nor do we endorse the contents of this review.