Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Friday the 13th: A New Beginning

Year: 1985
Director: Danny Steinmann
Writer: Martin Kitrosser, David Cohen
Genre: Horror: Slasher

Now I know why Friday the 13th Part 4 was called "The Final Chapter". With Part 5, otherwise known as A New Beginning, we are given the start of a new section in the series. In case you haven't seen up to the 5th film already, or don't know about it, then don't read on. At the end of the last movie we were basically treated to a very thorough and obvious killing of Jason. It has always bothered me in films when people don't go in for the kill when facing off against a madman, but in The Final Chapter it was obvious he wasn't coming back.

When A New Beginning started I kept that in mind. With the little boy all grown up now I figured every instance of Jason was a figment of his imagination, or even him acting out his worst nightmares. Although it didn't necessarily turn out exactly how I figured, it was just solid fact that the Jason everyone knew is dead and buried. I'm glad that the film didn't attempt to come up with a ridiculous reason to make him survive his last punishment too.

Instead, we're treated to a film where the little boy from the last film is all grown up and still ridiculously messed up. He stays in a home with other young patients and doesn't really seem to get along with them. Although I thought this was an interesting setup, I was sad to see that the other characters weren't really fleshed out as anything other than typical teenagers. I would have liked to see why they were also in this home.

The film then continues mostly without Tommy at all and has people slowly getting killed off. He exists from time to time to show how disturbed he is, but other than that it almost feels like he's not a big character in the film like he was in Part 4. By the end, the film does its best to remind us he exists and then give us the whole twist that we knew was coming anyway. With that, Jason has been succeeded and then I assume the other films follow down this road.

I find this unfortunate because Tommy doesn't exude "unhuman killer". Sure, Jason may have very well been a normal human being but he always felt like something much more. His hulking frame and ability to sustain major damage, not to mention his warped backstory, made him into an almost mythical figure. Tommy has much less of an effect, although he also had a tragedy befall him. Hopefully they will just continue the films as if he were a Jason figure and not refer back to his own, more human past.

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