US Release Date: 08-15-2003
Directed by: Ronny Yu
- Ken Kirzinger, as
- Jason Voorhees
- Robert Englund, as
- Freddy Krueger
- Monica Keena, as
- Lori Campbell
- Kelly Rowland, as
- Jason Ritter, as
- Chris Marquette, as
- Charlie Linderman
- Katharine Isabelle, as
- Brendan Fletcher, as
- Mark Davis
- Lochlyn Munro, as
- Deputy Scott Stubbs
- Zack Ward as
- Bobby Davis
Freddy Kruger in Freddy vs Jason.
Who knew that Camp Crystal Lake was only a few hours drive from Elm Street? Overflowing with blood and gore, and featuring plenty of gratuitous nudity and sexual references, Freddy vs Jason is a throwback to the now retro glory days of the two most successful horror franchises of the eighties, Friday the 13th and Nightmare On Elm Street. Whether or not this is your cup of tea, the makers of Freddy vs Jason do a successful job at adding some new life into a worn-out genre.
There are two lines of dialogue that stand out as being worthy of repeating, they also pretty much sum up the camp humor prevalent throughout the movie. The first one comes after Jason goes on a rampage during a rave that a bunch of teenagers are having out in a cornfield. After the attack, the main group of kids has escaped in a van and the stoner of the group is profound enough to proclaim, 'That goalie was pissed off about something.' Then later the 'innocent' blonde chick has a revelation when she comes up with this line, 'Freddy died by fire, Jason by water. How can we use this information?' That pretty much tells you how the ending will play out.
All the kids on Elm Street have forgotten poor Freddy Krueger. Without their fear to make him strong Freddy is neutralized. He finds Jason in the dark recesses of Hell and is able to resurrect him by taking the form of Jason's mother and instructing him to rise up. Freddy intends to use Jason as a pawn so that he can regain his powers. Of course things never go as planned and after many scenes of rampant teen sex, drinking and pot smoking (not to mention an incredibly high body count) Freddy and Jason wind up doing battle against each other on the shores of Crystal Lake.
Kelly Rowland of Destiny's Child plays the stereotypical wise cracking black girl. She proves a natural in front of the camera, but it would have been nice to see her in a bit more original of a role. But then nothing else about Freddy vs Jason is original either. Actually the attraction of this movie, other than the novelty of having the two title characters together, is to see just how bad it is. The answer is, so bad that it's almost good. The characters, plot and senseless carnage are so relentlessly over-done that it is easy to give your brain a few hours off and just sit back and soak up the cheap adrenaline rush being provided.
Since Freddy vs Jason is more or less a cinematic version of MTV's Celebrity Death Match series, it got me to wondering what it would be like if other genre's got in on the act. Why not have Robin Hood vs Zorro, or Sherlock Holmes vs James Bond? Or perhaps the less obvious, but no less fascinating combination of Dorothy Gale vs Laura Ingalls. After all, if Elm Street is near Camp Crystal Lake, then Uncle Henry's farm can't be too far from Walnut Grove.
Chris Marquette, Lochlyn Munro, Kelly Rowland and Jason Ritter discuss product placement.
Only you Patrick, could work a Judy Garland reference into a review of a Freddy Krueger movie. The team up I thought of when preparing to watch this was the old black and white horror film, Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman (1943). But I guess Dorothy Gale meets Laura Ingalls works, if that is how your brain functions.
This movie is not actually scary as it rushes to get to the two main characters killing someone or fighting each other. In other horror movies there is the build up to the kill. Here, there is more hacking and slashing than chills and frights. Gore and blood are every where. Body parts get severed and splatters of blood are constantly coloring the walls. It is a mindless, grotesque festival of carnage, perfect for a Halloween watch.
My favorite line is not a great line, but it does serve the movie. Freddie says it to the innocent blonde and she later says it back to him, “Welcome to my world, bitch!” I can just picture Laura Ingalls saying that to Dorothy Gale.
The horror is that there is no horror, just gore.
Actually I was put in mind of the old DC/Marvel crossovers, like when Superman and Spider-man would meet. Although, like you Eric, I also thought of the old Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman movie. I can honestly say that not once did I think of Laura Ingalls meets Dorothy Gale, but I think I would have preferred that movie to this one.
Maybe it's because I was never really a fan of either of these two horror series, but I can't say I was excited or even intrigued by this concept. I saw the original Nightmare on Elm Street and I know I've seen at least one of the Friday the 13th movies, but I didn't really care for either one of them. The original Halloween I remember seeing and being quite scared by, and no other slasher movie has ever lived up to that memory.
Like you say Eric, this isn't really a horror movie at all, since there aren't really any scares. It's all about the gore. There's no suspense and no "jump" moments. It's all about getting as much blood on the screen as possible. It was always the suspense that was the best part of these movies. It's the build up that makes the gory pay-off worth it, but here they just go straight for the pay-off. Also, what's up with the scene where Freddy is whipping Jason around to the sound effects of a pinball machine? Is this a horror movie or a camp fest?
Patrick, you mentioned my favorite line; the "That goalie was pissed off about something," line. Apart from that one line, the writing isn't much to write about. Clearly the whole concept was the idea of getting the two characters together and the rest of the plot was just an afterthought. I was surprised though to see that it's actually an hour into the movie before the two start to fight.
The cast is as generic as the plot. Not that they're given much to do, but I just watched the movie and I've already started to forget the actors. I doubt I'd be able to pick them out of a lineup apart from Lochlyn Munro, the blonde cop who ironically was one of the stars of the horror spoof Scary Movie.
Not that I really cared one way or the other, but for the record if I had to pick who I'd want to win in a fight between these two characters (since the movie ends so ambiguously) , I'd have to go with Jason, if only so Freddy would shut the hell up. I thought he was supposed to be scary, but most of the time he just runs off at the mouth so much he's annoying. Was he always like that?
Photos © Copyright New Line Productions (2003)