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Freddy vs. Jason (2003)
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Review Date: August 11, 2003
Director: Ronny Yu
Writer: Mark Swift, Damian Shannon
Producers: Sean S. Cunningham
Actors:
Robert Englund
Ken Kirzinger
Monica Keena
Plot:
The two legends of horror mayhem, Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) and Freddy Krueger (Nightmare on Elm Street), finally meet up in a film that has the latter infiltrating the former to kill some kids from his old neighborhood. But when Jase gets a little too involved in his work, Freddy decides to get a little more active himself and it isn't long before the two murderous madmen are fighting one another for the ultimate prize: a gigantic opening box-office weekend.
Critique:
Before I get into my review, allow me to preface it by saying that I have not seen many of the Freddy or Jason movies before this one, and do not know much about their lore or background. I did go into it with an open mind though. What I got out of the flick was a great final 30 minutes with the legendary horror icons going "all out" against one another, but a whole bunch of hokum before then, with a slew of one-dimensional teens running around, talking about this and that, dreaming, waking up and then dreaming some more. I was personally expecting a lot more fun from this movie, but other than its initial 10 minutes (which included some wicked opening credits) which featured a buck naked chick with big tits jumping into a lake and well, "getting what she deserved for doing that in a horror movie", I was left somewhat frustrated by the film's emphasis on over-exposition with a whole lot of talking amongst morons (who gives a shit about some lame-ass back-story about a father killing his wife, etc...), leading me to question where the two monsters from hell were and when the heck they were gonna start tearing into each other. Granted, maybe I was expecting a different kind of movie, one which the title suggested, featuring two killers going mano-a-mano for the length of the film, but despite one very cool/brutal kill early on and a very strong finish, there wasn't all that much to excite. Some of the elements that didn't click included the editing, which felt choppy and indicative of missing scenes, the soundtrack, which for a movie of this magnitude, I expected to be more memorable, and the story, which despite probably "working" under the realms of the two worlds in which the characters existed, didn't interest me all that much.

I assume that those familiar with these two worlds will appreciate the efforts made by the filmmakers to make it all connect, but the whole Freddy "working through" Jason concept just didn't "do it" for me, especially since it took up most of the film's runtime. The movie's final minutes gave me a great boost with plenty of ass-kicking though, but even that re-emphasized how cool the rest of the film could have been had they written something a little more exciting. Some characters also seemed strangely concentrated on like the rookie cop and the nerd boy from school, while others were just obviously phony (like that "supposed" stoner kid) or included solely for marketing purposes (Destiny's Child, anyone??) The lead girl with the huge cans, Monica Keena, was decent in her part though, and despite crying in every other scene, sold me on being scared. The raver chick with the big-titted body double also did a decent job, and oh yeah, before I forget...thanks to the filmmakers for finally putting some actual T&A back into horror movies...phew, I thought we'd lost them forever. I was, however, expecting a lot more style from director Yu, who I thought did a brilliant job with BRIDE OF CHUCKY, but seemed to rely a little too much on one specific "strobe" camera effect here and didn't generate the greatest of energy. In the end, I guess I just expected more from this film after such a long gestation period (it's been talked about for over 12 years). I also expected more humor, more fun, more action and ultimately, more scares and terror between the two big guys. I don't mind you building up the connection between the duo and developing it somewhat, but remember the title of the movie and don't make us wait until the final act to see them dueling, man!! Boo scares and silicone-implanted chicks can only sustain our interest for so long. Loved the final shot though...definitely one of the best ones of the year so far.
(c) 2014 Berge Garabedian
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