Dave’s 3-Word Review:
Nothing special. Nothing.
Friday the 13th…the horror franchise that – like its star, refuses to quit. Though all good things must come to an end…well the same goes for bad. Whether you consider this horror franchise a major guilty pleasured success, or if you’re sick and tired of it, Jason’s raid on terror ends here…and begins here in a matter of speaking. Remakes, we all know we definitely need more of those *scoffs*. Interestingly enough, every major horror flick seems to have a remake. Think about it, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Carrie, Poltergeist, The Haunting, The Hills Have Eyes, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre…the list goes on, and Friday the 13th is just casually placed in amongst the rest. Though…is it really a remake? Yeah, not really.
When Clay Miller (Jared Padelecki) tra-la-la’s directly into Camp Crystal Lake looking for his missing sister, he and a group of naked vacationing teens run smack-dab into Chuckles himself, Jason Vorhees, a boy who legendarily witnessed his own mother’s murder and kills anyone that ventures onto this land. Well wouldn’t you know it? These guys just keep on dying one after another and it is up to Clay to…I guess run around like a little wimp narrowly escaping the sword…or machete rather. Will they find a way out of it, or will they destroy Jason just to have him come back again? Probably!
This “remake” retells the events of the first film in something like the first minute of the movie before pursuing a new story. They even mention Jason’s mother died in 1980, which was the year of the first film. So…in a sense, this is actually a sequel. Yeah, they copy some things here and there, but those changes are hardly noticeable. Instead what you have presented before you is like…the first four movies in the original Friday the 13th franchise mixed up in a blender and sprinkled with tiny differences here and there. Bon appétit!
Those differences are primarily: Jason’s personality and Clay. Jason’s personality is split into a couple of different things: First, he’s faster and more calculating. Second, he’s a bit more believable in his actions…it somehow makes more sense when the film focuses on him on his down time. Also, Jason has done something he never has before – he kidnapped a girl, he didn’t kill her. As far as mystery goes, that might be a little mind boggling if you haven’t seen the first film. If you have, then you could probably piece together a theory. Clay was never a character in any of the films, but there’s nothing special about him past people knowing Padelecki plays one of the Winchester brothers on CW’s hit show, Supernatural. His story is about finding his sister, and that’s how deep it goes. I mention the difference because it’s a difference, not because it’s important…because it’s not.
Here’s what I actually like about it. It is done as a standalone film, so you are told everything that you need to know up front. No need to wonder what happened in the previous versions. Next, I like it because the main villain wasn’t stupidly Jason’s mother, she was shown in a flashback and thankfully only a flashback. People disagree with me, and that’s fine, but I hated that reveal, it made no sense and made the rest of the film horrible.
As a standalone project, Friday the 13th majorly surpasses the clumsy writing of the original film in my opinion. However, it is still a random slasher filled with a lot of disposable characters. I like to be surprised and appalled at the killings in slasher films. Overall the film was okay, but there was nothing even remotely special about it.