starring: John D. LeMay, Kari Keegan, Kane Hodder
I can't hate this. Not even if I tried. The film has great sentimental value for me, as this is one of the few first DVDs I came to own that my dad brought home when I was at the ending years of my Grade School. I was and always will be Jason's fan boy and this little number, despite the lack of an actual Jason (mask, machete and all), was one of the wackiest, cheesiest and entertainingly mind-numbing entre' to the iconic film series.
Some time after he had ravaged Manhattan and seemingly melted away thanks to a conveniently present toxic waste flood (yes, apparently New York's underground sewage is filled with them), the hulking killer known as Jason Voorhees somehow survives, got back to his old roots and was about to embark on another night of machete mayhem. One particular victim drove by one night and went to stay in one of the cabins, only to make a quick run for it as she spots the big guy just waiting to menace her. Towel-clad in the middle of the woods, and just when we thought we had another girl cornered by the big guy, she gave a quick signal and an entire swat team suddenly shows up, rained lead on Jason before blowing him up with a grenade. (or a Rocket Launcher. I dunno, the explosion looked too strong to be just a grenade)
Believing that the Camp Crystal Lake slasher is finally resting in pieces, the team picked up what charred remains they can grab a handful off from the late killer, leading us to a quite lengthy opening sequence involving a coroner playing around with Jason's chunky and horribly disfigured organs. It's all casual standard procedures until Jason's heart began to pump on its own, hypnotizing the coroner into eating it (I still don't get how?, or why?), and somehow allowing Jason's spirit (or spirits. Why was there so many floaty, ghostly lights coming out of Jason's body to begin with?!) to possess the man and embark on another murderous rampage.
The big guy eventually lead to another series of killings, all of it questioning the credibility of Jason's death. A prime time news report even had a special involving this controversy, which will include an interview with one infamous bounty hunter known as Creighton Duke, who somehow knows a lot about our killer, and is seemingly aware on how in-human he is to begin with. He vows to bring Jason back to where he belongs, in exchange for a hefty sum of cash.
Back in Crystal Lake, a local diner is celebrating Jason's death with a two-for-one burger deal (with hockey mask shaped patties and French fries dubbed as "Jason Fingers"). A waitress named Diana seems to be troubled from the fact these killings are happening again, but she has bigger things to deal with. Apart from living a mediocre job, she's also trying to make peace between her daughter, Jessica and her ex-boyfriend Steven. Apart from that, she also encounters Duke, who was looking for her, specifically, just for the job he needs to do. After a small ruffle broke out of the diner, Duke was arrested for disturbing the peace and Diana spoke with Steven to meet up with her later that night, as she has something important to tell him.
Unfortunately, that night was also the time we came to learn that Jason (or his soul) had to jump from one body to the next, as the ones he possesses doesn't last too long. (for some reason, the movie includes elements of "melt movies', just to show that this is a film for just about everyone...or so it tries) Jason eventually body-jumped and killed his way to Diana's house and murders her, leaving a visiting Steven to blame.
In his arrest, Steven had the luck to talk with Duke, who was more than willing (or, rather, with a price of broken fingers) to share what he knows: apparently, the drawback of Jason's ability to jump from one flesh bag to another which involves melting has a fail safe. Just in case he's to lose his body to the point that he can't even regenerate, he has the alternative to possess a bloodline and use that body to regain his. (clothes and mask are apparently included in the package deal) In a convenient, shark-jumping franchise twist, Jason has a half-sister: Diana! So with her dead, that only leaves Jessica and her own daughter, Stephanie (a secret Diana was supposed to share with Steven) in Jason's main hit list. With that, Steven is forced to risk his own life to save his family and face a threat that seems to have no end.
|The Voorhees house.|
Which sortah looks like the Myer's house in Halloween 5...
But, as any other Friday the 13th movie, Jason Goes to Hell never failed to deliver the bodycount; gore is glorious as ever with the film's pure brutality taking the spotlight. Messy kills such as full body splittings and people being smashed to walls are just some of the few pulpy killings our effects team are so willing to give us; add in some very obscure overkills (one guy gets stabbed on the head with a probe against a grated table with enough force to slice his face, while another gets impaled on a steel rod and gets their skull squished like a melon just to name a few) and you got yourself another reason to love and forgive this film for its sins. I also find the film's overly cheesy direction to be as equally fun as the bodycounting, giving the movie some bit of humor amidst the killings which some of the funnier ones present in the film's deleted scenes and alternative TV release. (There's an exchange between Steven and his cop friend about being pointed at with your own gun that I find really hilarious!) I also love the final fight in this movie, where average joe Steven grapples with the fully revived yet still undead Jason, mano-a-monster, leading to one of the most epic Jason "death" I'd seen in the franchise.
While obviously not the last film in the series, I find Jason Goes to Hell one heck of a screwed-up last ride for Mr. Voorhees and loved every minute of it. It's not the best film in the series but it certainly made an impression for itself and I'm pretty damn proud of seeing it, and while it might take another few years for him to comeback in his full, hockey-masked glory to kill horny teenagers as he's supposed to (and another couple of years before he finally grapples with our dream menace, Freddy Krueger), at least it's safe to say Jason's new home (New Lines cinema, not Hell!) knew how to get our attention and entertain us in the most outrageous way!
1 male autopsy probe to the head, face grated
2 males bludgeoned to death offcamera
1 female slashed to death with scalpel
1 female split in half with rain spike
1 male head smashed offcamera
1 female head crushed with car door
1 male presumably melted
1 female gets a thrown knife sharpener to the back
1 male melts
1 female face crushed
2 males gets their heads bashed together
1 male arm broken, thrown dead against diner door
1 male accidentally shot with shotgun
1 male head dunked on deep fryer, burnt
1 female gets her lower jaw bashed in
1 female impaled on barbecue skewer, head crushed open
1 male presumably melted offcamera
1 male stabbed on the gut with dagger
1 male nearly decapitated with machete
1 male back broken with bear hug
HAPPY FRIDAY THE 13TH, GRUE BELIEVERS!