Craptastic Cinema

Celebrating The Best Of The Worst Movies

Freddy vs Jason

Year : 2003 Director : Ronny Yu Running Time : 97 minutes Genre :
Movie review score

While there are many icons of the horror movie genre, very few characters stand out as pop culture stars.  The big three of these are without a doubt Michael Myers from the “Halloween” series, Freddy Krueger from “A Nightmare on Elm Street“, and Jason Voorhees of “Friday the 13th” fame.  For years fans of each series would theorize, nice way to say argue, over who was the best of the batch.  Freddy had the most powers, but only existed in the dreams of his victims.  Michael Meyers and Jason never slept, so how would Freddy face them?  Michael and Jason also were very much alike.  Both were unstoppable creatures who hid behind a mask , and murdered people with knives.  However Michael focused on his family and people that stood in his way of murdering them.  Jason protected Crystal Lake avenging the murder of his mother (who was murdered while avenging his death).  How would you be able to have any of these characters face off against each other?  In 1988, the idea was to pit Freddy Krueger versus Jason Voorhees in the film which became “Friday the 13th Part VII“.  It didn’t happen at that time, probably because of the characters belonging to two different production companies.  Then, in 1993 both characters were under the same roof at New Line Cinema.  The release of “Jason Goes to Hell” planted the seed for the battle with it’s ending.  However, the movie was still in “production hell” and many though it would never happen.  Then, ten years later, what many thought would never happen did.  In 2003, the world watched in awe when the battle of battles took place in the epic movie “Freddy vs Jason” was finally released.

Set four years after the movie “Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare“, “Freddy vs Jason” began with Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) trapped in Hell.  The people of Springwood, the central location for the “A Nightmare on Elm Street” films, had forgotten about him.  Because they don’t think about him, or fear him, Freddy doesn’t have his powers anymore.  He was desperate to escape, so he located Jason Voorhees (Ken Kirzinger) in Hell.  Freddy took the form of Jason’s mother, Pamela, and convinced him to rise again and wreak havoc in Springwood.  Freddy felt that with Jason killing everyone, the residents will have thought that it was Freddy once again.  Thus giving Freddy his powers back, and allowed his escape from Hell.

Jason’s first stop in Springwood is the the house that Nancy, from the Nightmare series, used to live.  The house is now occupied by Lori (Monica Keena) and her father.  Lori is hanging out with a few of her friends, and Jason murders one of them, Trey (Jesse Hutch).  The surviving friends were taken to the police station for questioning, and Lori overheard someone talking about Freddy.  When they were released, Lori fell asleep and had a dream about Freddy.  That began the rejuvenation of Freddy’s powers.  Another one of her friends Blake (David Kopp) who was there, went home and fell asleep as well.  Freddy tried to attack him in his dream, but his claw went right through him.  When Blake woke up, he saw his dad standing next to him.  However, his dad was dead.  He was decapitated and his head fell off in front of Blake.  Blake moved back in fear, only to bump into Jason standing there.  Blake became Jason’s next victim.  In order to prevent suspicion over the return of Freddy, the police say that Blake murdered Trey, killed his father, then took his own life.

Lori’s boyfriend Will (Jason Ritter) is locked up in a mental institution and sees a newscast about the murders in Lori’s house.  He, and his friend Mark (Brendan Fletcher), broke out of the institution to go see if Lori is alright.  The next morning at school, Lori told her friends about the dreams that she has been having.  Mark overheard her description of the man in her dreams, and told her that it was Freddy Krueger.  Lori and her friends had never heard of Freddy, but Mark sure did.  Will and Mark were locked in the institution with other people who had once interacted with Freddy.  They were given a medication called Hypnocil to prevent them from dreaming again.  With the drug, and keeping all knowledge of Freddy away from the kids, Freddy was powerless from coming back again.  However, now that people were talking about him again, his powers returned.

The high school kids had a rave like party later that night in the corn fields near Springhaven.  Lori and her friends went out to partake in the festivities.  Lori’s friend Gibb (Katherine Isabelle) got really intoxicated and fell asleep.  In her dream , Freddy attacked her.  Now that all of Freddy’s powers had returned, he toyed with Gibb like he does in many of the “A Nightmare on Elm Street” movies.  In the real world, a male teen found the passed out Gibb laying on the ground.  He thought that it would be a good idea to have his way with her, and attempted to rape her.  Back in the dream world, Freddy was about to kill Gibb when all of a sudden she exploded and disappeared.  In the real world, Jason walked up and saw the guy raping Gibb.  Since Jason normally kills everyone he sees having any form of sex, he murdered the two of them.  Because he murdered Gibb before Freddy could, Freddy got upset.  He felt that Jason got too out of control and needed to be stopped.

Lori, Will, and a few of her friends determined that they needed to get a hold of some Hypnocil and prevent Freddy from getting to them by preventing their dreams.  They broke back into the mental institute that Will broke out of before.  Jason followed them there.  At one point, Freddy was able to possess the body of one of the kids so that he could lure Jason into the dream world.  When Jason was about to kill the kid with Freddy inside, Freddy stabbed Jason with a bunch of tranquilizers.  That is how the battle of Freddy vs Jason began.

In the dream world, Freddy completely had control of the fight.  Jason was getting his butt kicked.  In the real world, Lori and her friends came up with a plan to get rid of Freddy once and for all by using Jason to their advantage.  The gang took Jason’s body back to Crystal Lake.  Their plan was to get Jason to his normal surroundings.  Lori then will take some drugs to help her fall asleep.  She would grab Freddy in the dream world, and then have her friends wake her up while she held on to Freddy.  This would bring Freddy into the real world, and hopefully would give Jason the advantage.  Their plan didn’t go exactly to plan, but it worked good enough.  Freddy was pulled into the real world just as Jason was came out of sedation.  The battle now continued in the real world, and Jason kicked Freddy’s butt.  Freddy did have speed on his side, and managed to fight back.  Also, Jason had Lori and Will on his side.  The fight kept going back and forth.  In the end, it appeared that Jason was the victor.  However, just before the movie faded to black, Freddy winked at the camera and laughed.

“Freddy vs Jason” is considered to be both “A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 8” and “Friday the 13th Part 11”.  They way they made it, the movie honored both of the character’s individual mythologies.  Neither came out looking worse from the movie, but both benefited from it.  “Freddy vs Jason” was the highest grossing movie either series ever had as well.  The stars aligned correctly when they made this movie.  Everything worked.  The horror was scary, the characters were among the best either series ever had, the humor was actually funny.  The battle between Freddy and Jason was everything a fan of either series, or both, could wish for.  Considering most crossover films have failed in the past, “Alien vs Predator” I am looking your way, this was a refreshing change from that norm.  Also, this was the final time that Robert Englund played Freddy Krueger.  So it was a fitting send off for him in his signature role.  It was a shame that Kane Hodder could not play Jason in this film, considering that he is considered the definitive Jason.  The rumor was that he was a few inches too short for the director’s likes.  He wanted Jason to tower over Freddy.  Whatever the reason, it would have been nice to have Kane vs Robert in the roles.

On the Craptastic Scale, “Freddy vs Jason” gets a 4 out of 5.  It is hard to find any faults with this movie.  It stands as one of the best films in both franchises connected to it.  If I had to point out a single fault, it would be with individual actors.  Some of them were not as good as others, but none of their performances took away from the overall enjoyment of the movie.  Part of the battle that took place in Freddy’s dream world did look a tad corny, but again it was not enough to take away from the overall film.  I would say that “Freddy vs Jason” is a must own horror movie.  It perfectly combines that two franchises into one over the top, and excellent movie.  This one is available on BluRay, as well as DVD.  Funny enough, you can pick up the BluRay for cheaper than the DVD in most online stores.  You can get this in multipacks for both series as well.  It is not in Netflix Instant, but the movie is itself there for rental.  However you can watch it, watch it.

How did “Freddy vs Jason” rank against the rest of the films in the “Friday the 13th” series?  Click here to find out

-Matt Camarco
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