GORE GORE GORE: Friday the 13th Part 3 3D
This movie was filmed during the 80’s brief 3D fad, and unlike now where people tend to use 3D to add depth and magnitude to their films back then they used it for cheap scares. So what you had in this movie were a bunch of absurd shots that look really silly if you aren’t watching in 3D, which until a recent DVD release was the way anyone would see it outside of the original theater goers. Because this movie was filmed in 3D and filming in 3D is very expensive they producers had to cut some corners, and in this movie they chose to do this by skimping on actors. Oh there were plenty of characters in the movie, but really only two people who have the right to call themselves actors. This movie may just be the worst acting in the series. This time when I go through the cast of characters I’m also going to include the actors playing the characters, because their performances were bad, and they should feel bad.
The movie starts off with a recap of the end of the previous movie, as was the trend for this series at the time. They added another scene in where they show Jason getting up from where he was taken down by Ginny, and the remaining scary window jump is not shown, which implies the ending of the last movie was a dream sequence instead of real.
After this section we get a fun but ultimately pointless scene where Jason stalks and kills a couple that run a small store. It’s during this portion that the pointless and goofy 3D gags start. The scene is pointless because there’s really no reason for Jason to kill these people, other than he was passing by.
Now on to our cast of characters, played by actors that should feel shame.
Our main heroine in this story is Chris played by Dana Kimmell. Chris has a history with everyone’s favorite mongoloid killer having managed to escape Jason one time as told in a horribly acted flashback sequence and voiceover. She’s up there to try to get over her fears in a family Cabin on another side of Camp Crystal Lake (Which has to be as big as lake Erie to manage to have all these houses and campsites around it.) Usually in these movies the main girl is someone they generally make you feel for and want to see survive. Not in this movie, I wanted to see Chris die almost as much as Ted in the previous movie, but alas that didn’t happen.
Chris has a kind of boyfriend in this movie named Rick played by Paul Kratka. He’s terribly wooden in his acting and the character isn’t written much better. He wants to leave because Chris won’t sleep with him as she’s up there to try to get over her fears. Come to think of it Rick is kind of a bastard. Rick doesn’t survive the night of course and he dies in the most unintentionally hilarious way when Jason squeezes his head until his eye pops out in another cheap 3D gimmick.
Next we have our stereotypical have sex and then die couple that every slasher movie has to have. Their names are Debbie and Andy and they are played by Tracie Savage and Jeffrey Rogers. Again their acting is just awful. Debbie is a particularly slutty slasher slut, as it’s established that she’s already pregnant. Just what these movies need teenage pregnancy. There really isn’t much to these characters to report, they aren’t interesting at all and they never really do anything in the movie worthwhile. Andy at least gets a pretty cool death. While walking on his hands (His little trick that screams look I’m an interesting character, honest) Jason cleaves him in half with a machete. This is of course during the standard couple separates after sex and one goes into the shower portion of the movie. Debbie gets stabbed from underneath the hammock she was laying in, in a very generic slasher kill; a generic death for a generic character.
Another group of characters I want to talk about is what I like to call the Tokens. I call them that because they are two token black characters and a token Latino character (I think) played by a white guy. It’s like they were shoehorned in at the last second because someone complained there were no minorities in the first two movies. These characters are insulting. They are three thug criminals because you can’t have positive minority characters in a slasher movie from the 80’s. It just wasn’t aloud. Their names were Ali, Fox, and Loco. I can’t be bothered to loco up these actors but they were horrible. All three are dispatched in short order by Jason, and the insult is over.
The next characters to discuss are the stoner couple, Chuck and Chilli, played by David Katims and Rachel Howard. This couple is so out of place it’s not funny. The characters are in their mid thirties hanging out with a bunch of teenagers. Their only purpose seems to be to include stoner humor that Cheech and Chong would call too low brow. Chuck gets killed by getting his face shoved in a fuse box, and Chilli dies by hot poker.
Now with all those characters out of the way I want to get on to the only two actors in this movie who showed anything worthwhile. They are the two actors who cared and are the main reasons to watch this film. They are Shelly played by Larry Zerner and Vera played by Catherine Parks. They are the joking dick of this move and the cold bitch. The irony is they are the only two likable characters in this movie as they are the only two people to turn in decent performances.
Shelly is your joker dick, but unlike other joker dicks Shelly doesn’t do it to be mean, he does it for attention as he’s really kinda sad and lonely. Shelly is easy to sympathize with, and performs some heroics of his own when he runs over the Tokens’ motorcycles after they terrorize him and Vera at the store. You really feel bad for Shelly when he dies as the character is very likable. Shelly gets his throat slit (and Chilli believes that to be another one of his jokes at first) and has his mask stolen. That mask is an old school Hockey mask. That’s right, not only is Shelly a likable character, but he’s responsible for Jason’s Iconic look.
Vera is the cold bitch. She’s paired with Shelly and he tries to be nice to her, and play his jokes on her. Shelly just wanted Vera to like him, and it turns out Vera did when he wasn’t playing his jokes. So you find out the cold bitch isn’t so cold and bitchy after all. It is my opinion that Vera or at least the actress behind her should have been the main heroine. She really does turn in a good performance. Vera dies when Jason shoots her with a harpoon gun in another cheap 3D gag. She thinks Jason is Shelly because he’s wearing Shelley’s mask at this point.
For all her faults, the final battle with Chris and Jason isn’t that bad. It has all the clichés yes with her running into dead ends instead of out of the house, and the van not starting (or rather starting and stalling); but it also had positives. She gets to get revenge on the guy who tormented her earlier. She repeatedly tries to take him out, with a knife first, then she hits him with a log.
After running into the barn she climbs up into the hayloft. When he follows she clocks him with a shovel and then pushes him out of the loft with a rope around his neck hanging him. This is the first instance in a Friday the 13th movie where there is a false death. When she goes to leave the barn Jason suddenly wakes up and removes the rope, accidentally revealing his face for a few seconds, long enough to show Chris it is indeed the weirdo that attacked her years earlier.
Jason starts to stalk her but someone comes to her aid! It’s one of the Tokens who managed to survive being beaten with a wrench. This time however Jason has a Machete, which is far more efficient at killing the racial stereotype. This does distract Jason long enough for Chris to pick up an axe and bury it in Jason’s forehead thus killing him.
Chris then runs out of the barn and gets into a boat, going out into the middle of the lake (much like Alice in a much better movie Friday the 13th movie). She wakes up in the morning and looks into the barn and sees Jason isn’t there! Looking into the house she sees him in the window! He comes running down the stairs and bust through the door! But it was all for nothing. Turns out Poor Chris was hallucinating. When all seems okay the body of Jason’s mother with head attached jumps out of the lake and pulls her under in a cheap rehash of the ending of the first movie. What a twist! Turns out however that that too was a dream and Chris is helped into a police car crying and laughing, poor Chris has lost her mind (or her acting is so bad her crying sounds like laughing, which could be it too).
And that’s the end of Friday the 13th Part 3. Final thoughts, this movie isn’t up to the standard of those before it, or the one after it that’s for sure. The acting is downright awful most of the time and most of the characters are beyond generic. If you don’t watch it in 3D some of the kills are downright silly. All in all, this movie isn’t that good. It’s not terrible. It has its redeeming qualities. Some kills are cool, and Vera and Shelly are really good characters, but in the end the only reason to watch this movie is because it bridges the 2nd and 4th movie together as they form a kind of trilogy. I guess that makes this the Search for Spock of the Friday the 13th series.
Normally I end my reviews with the trailer for the film, but this time it’s going to be a little different. I haven’t talked about the best part of this movie yet. The awesome disco horror theme. What were they thinking?