Thursday, June 13, 2013

"Jason X" (2001) d/James Isaac

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A glimpse across the almighty interwebz tubes will tell you that a lot of critics and Friday the 13th "purists" (Save yer blind fanboy backlash, I know where you're coming from. I, too, was thirteen once...) hate this entry, the tenth in the series,  for a myriad of  reasons, the most 
preeminent being how far from the franchise formula the movie deviated. If you're unfamiliar with said formula despite having read my previous nine F13th reviews,  it involves sex-starved teenaged morons poking around a certain lake where any number of murders have been committed by an indestructible deformed mongoloid zombie in a hockey goalie mask. That's just about it, in a nutshell. And, if  by chance you weren't paying attention at the outset of the review,  X means 'ten'. I'll let you think about that while we get to the syn-wop-sis.

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"Now you've got the same range of facial expression as Keanu Reeves!", sez Jason (Kane Hodder).
In the future year of 2008 (when a horrible band named Coldplay would become inexplicably popular), the American government has finally captured the prolific maniac, Osam-uhh, Jason Voorhees (Hodder), holding him at a research facility built on Crystal Lake itself. Two years later (music's gotten worse, too), they decide upon freezing him to further study his inhuman cell regeneration rate when he busts the fuck loose like Janet's nipple at the Super Bowl, killing soldiers and David Cronenberg-in-a-cameo in inventively brutal ways before a young scientist named Rowan (Lexa Doig) lures the lumbering monster into a nearby cryogenic chamber, getting herself shanked and frozen in the process. Fast forward to the year 2455. The members of Coldplay are all finally dead. Unfortunately, so is Earth, whose polluted soil is visited upon by a field trip of students (from 'Earth Two', naturally) with their professor, who stumble upon the ruins of the research center and the frozen scientist and her giant hockey masked attacker, which they bring back to their ship for further inspection. Upon the 'Grendel' are a few more horny, stoned teenagers and a hot redheaded android with no nipples named Kay-Em14 (Lisa Ryder). You see where they're going here, don't you?

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"No, no, I wanted  you to have nipples, Kay-Em14 (Lisa Ryder)! It's the vocal chords I wanted you to get rid of..."
The crew of misfits manages to thaw out both the young woman and Voorhees, who proceeds to plough through victims in his typically inventive and violent m.o. ( liquid nitro-frozen faces smashed into pieces on counter tops, skewering on giant screws, etc.), destroying two ships and forcing the survivors to take refuge on a rescue shuttle, until a weapon/skill updated Kay-Em finally blasts him into an unrecognizable pile of smoldering flesh. Of course, the corpse lands atop a medical station, which malfunctions, sending nanites out to repair the serial killer's remains, and wouldn't you just know it, the result is the new and improved muscle-laden cyborg Uber-Jason who punches Kay-Em's head off for her folly. After breaching the hull with his fist(!) which sucks one poor chick screaming out into space, the remaining crew create a virtual Crystal Lake, complete with topless bubbleheaded e-victims(!) to pacify the killer, while they repair the damage to their craft from the outside. A pantoon explosion hurls the chromed-out psycho through space at the survivors, but he is intercepted by the resilient sergeant-in-space suit, and both plummet into Earth Two's atmosphere and burn up. On the planet's surface, two teens watch a falling star, as the charred Uber-mask sinks to the bottom of the lake. Cue: Ki ki ki ma ma ma...

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As absurd as it is, you gotta admit this is pretty cool.
So what, if anything, have we learned from all this? Apparently, Jason Voorhees should stay on present day Earth, slaughtering interchangeably stupid people in inventive ways on the same tract of land around the same lake, forevermore. And woe to James Isaac and company for injecting slightly new bloody, sexy life into the series, undervaluing itself through humor and cleverly acknowledging it's own many flaws, but mainly because they didn't do the exact same thing with the same exhausted material that the previous crews did. Except that, I actually dug it, and found myself more entertained with it than any F13th flick dating back to Part Six, giving it the respectable deuce for it's effort. Those of you who like your horror franchise flicks the same way that McDonald's processes the pink meat paste into McNuggets will disagree, no doubt...

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"There's one or two things missing from this picture", said my hands.
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