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Freddy Vs. Jason

movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Freddy Vs. Jason

Starring: Robert Englund, Ken Kirzinger
Director: Ronny Yu
Rated: R
RunTime: 97 Minutes
Release Date: August 2003
Genre: Horror

*Also starring: Jason Ritter, Monica Keena, Lauren Lee Smith, Chris Marquette, Joshua Mihal, Kelly Rowland, Odessa Munroe, Chris Marquette

Review by Jerry Saravia
2½ stars out of 4

It was bound to happen and it finally did. After years of countless rumors and rewrites, the pairing of the horror titans has finally been unleashed. "Freddy vs. Jason" is here and I am happy to report that it is not bad and has some creative ideas, though it is your basic gory slasher flick. On the other hand, when it comes to Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees, how can you expect anything less?

This time, burn-scarred Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) explains how he persuaded goalie-masked Jason Voorhees to go to good old Springwood (the home of Elm Street) and start carving up teenagers so Freddy can be blamed for their deaths. Although this idea may sound convoluted, it is promising since the town has chosen to forget Freddy Krueger's existence (most of their teen population had been eliminated in past movies) - any one teen that can dredge up his name is placed in a mental institution. So if nobody fears him, nobody can dream about him. Jason merely hacks his way through the town and a rave with his machete, accruing a high body count. But now that Freddy's intended victims are being slaughtered by Mr. Voorhees, Freddy decides to have a physical match with Jason in his dreams.

"Freddy vs. Jason" has all the basic ingredients of your average slasher flick - there are gallons of blood, a high body count, female nudity, a shower scene, a number of incendiary, zitless, horny teens and a delectably witty stoner sequence. Since this is not only a sequel to "Nightmare on Elm Street" but also "Friday the 13th," you can count on some outlandish dream sequences and also the cliched "Who's there?" scenes, not to mention a number of false alarms. Only until the final half-hour are we treated to what we have been clamoring for - an intensely violent match between Freddy and Jason in the boiler room that exceeds expectations. Let's just say that it is crudely funny and inventive - who could ever win such a match? Suffice to say that both get their just desserts. But do not rule out yet another sequel match-up in the future.

I have never been a fan of "Friday the 13th," seeing only the first two sequels. I have always enjoyed "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and its six sequels and found that Freddy Krueger always had more charisma and personality than the robotic Jason. Still, for Elm Street fans, there are only a handful of the creative dream sequences that have become a hallmark of the series, and Freddy's repartee is kept to a minimum. Jason seems to have more screen time, slashing and pummeling his victims with his machete. The intended teen victims all seem older than they should be and only exist to be carved up by either of the horror icons. The sole exception is Katharine Isabelle (the slutty werewolf in the cultish "Ginger Snaps") if only because she possesses a vitality the others can't match - too bad her screen time is limited. One stoner character, an obvious model of Jay from Kevin Smith's View Askew universe, has a great line after witnessing the rave massacre: "That goalie must have been pissed about something."

So if you like gory slasher flicks and would enjoy seeing Freddy kicking Jason's butt and likewise, then "Freddy vs. Jason" may be the movie for you. If you find the slasher genre disreputable and responsible for the decline of the western civilization, then stay far, far away.

Copyright 2003 Jerry Saravia

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