Thursday, August 23, 2012

Friday the 13th IV: The Final Chapter (1984)

The Final Chapter is one of the two F13 movies I have seen the most (the other being Jason Takes Manhattan, for obvious reasons). It is also, as I'm told, the most common fan favorite, which is pretty understandable. Let's review the highlights of F13p4:

-Crispin Glover! Seriously you guys, Crispin Glover is SUCH a weirdo, he's the best. Did you know he once sued Steven Spielberg and WON? He also made a surrealist film called What Is It? featuring only actors with Downs Syndrome (and himself). He has also released a spoken word album titled The Big Problem ≠ The Solution. The Solution = Let It Be. His middle name--for real--is Hellion. He is just the BEST. His role in F13p4 is a pretty typical hapless-loser-trying-to-get-laid archetype, but he does have a completely George McFly moment right before he dies that I just could NOT stop laughing about. This clip only shows a bit of it, but you get the idea:

-Corey Feldman! Seriously, this movie is a star-studded event. This is only his second real movie role (first being Gremlins) and he is just adorable. His character, Tommy Jarvis, is also somehow an accomplished special effects artist and creates totally amazing monster masks. I find this a little unbelievable, but since it's Corey Feldman I'll allow it.

-Weird vintage porn filmstrips! I looked for a clip online, but as you can imagine, it's a difficult thing to properly search for--especially at work. I would like to note here one low-light of the movie: there are several incidents of fat-shaming, most notably when one of the lovely vintage ladies is called a pig and when a hitchhiking hippie is shouted at and teased. Not cool, guys!

-The return of using psychology against Jason! After the approach was abandoned in the last movie in favor of an axe to the skull, it was nice to once again see some clever exploitation of Jason's severe childhood trauma. Unfortunately, Tommy's impersonation of Jason mostly just serves as a distraction and actually winds up doing quite a bit of damage to Tommy himself in the end, that's really a topic for another post (the one right after this).

In conclusion, I'd like to revisit the issue of when and if Jason is alive/dead/undead. After the last movie, he wound up in a morgue, suggesting all life signs were gone and seemingly supporting the theory that he did in fact die and in F13p4 is now undead. However, most medical professionals and other authorities in the series are pretty incompetent PLUS Jason's physical anatomy is certainly irregular, so this evidence is hardly conclusive. I know this issue is just going to keep getting more complicated with each movie, so I'll leave it at that for this post, but stay tuned for Friday the 13th V: A New Beginning!

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