Morbidly Beautiful

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We set up camp at Crystal Lake for the promised end of the “Friday the 13th” franchise — a two-time fakeout with parts 3 and 4.

Friday the 13th Part III

We continue our nostalgic look back at the Friday the 13th franchise with a look at Part 3, released in 1982, and Part 4, released in 1984. If you missed our discussion of the 1980 slasher classic that started it all, be sure to check it out here. You can also catch our rewind review of Part 2 right here.

With Friday the 13th Part III, viewers were met with a decisive change in tone for the series. While the films have always taken us on roller coaster rides of emotions, they’ve predominantly leaned towards lighter scares, aiming to impress and make the audience cringe with their blood and gore. And boy, do they succeed! Each movie seems to be in fierce competition to outdo its predecessor, and more often than not, they manage to accomplish just that.

Set directly after the events of the previous films, the plot of Part III follows a teenage girl (Kimmell) and her friends who go on a trip to a house near Crystal Lake where a wounded Jason Voorhees (Brooker) has taken refuge until reemerging for another killing spree. The film marks the first appearance of Jason’s signature hockey mask, which has since become a trademark of both the character and the franchise, as well as an icon in American cinema and the horror genre in general.

The practical effects showcased true creativity and required the crew to modify and think outside the box.

Friday the 13th Part III was theatrically released in 3D and is the only film in the series to be released in that format.

The film was intended to end the series as a trilogy. However, money talks, and a direct sequel, Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, was released two years later

As an avid viewer of ’80s films, I’ve come to embrace the inherent cheesiness that often comes with them, with a few exceptions, of course. The ’80s were a time when the film industry was flooded with movies, believing that more was better. It wasn’t just Hollywood churning out films; even individuals with their own creepy ideas were making home movies with their hard-earned money. The work ethic of that era was nothing short of insane; they were making these films almost back-to-back with each entry.

Part IV was obviously not the last film in the Friday the 13th franchise, but it did mark the conclusion of the original storyline.

Friday the 13th Part IV

We talk about the merits of the tetralogy (series of 4) and how well it did in telling a complete and satisfying story.

Picking up immediately after the events of the previous film, the plot follows a presumed-dead Jason Voorhees, who escapes from the morgue and returns to Crystal Lake to continue his killing spree. The film marks the debut of the character Tommy Jarvis (Corey Feldman), who would make further appearances in two sequels and related media, establishing him as Jason’s archenemy.

Corey Feldman, a mega child star of the 80s, was a smart choice for what was billed as “The Final Chapter” in the popular franchise. Though, it’s an odd casting decision, given his star power, if the plan wasn’t to explore Tommy as the new face of the series.

Producer Frank Mancuso Jr. wanted to conclude the series as he felt no one respected him for his producing work on it, regardless of how much the films earned at the box office. Paramount Pictures supported the decision, as they were aware of the declining popularity of slasher films at the time of its release.

Make-up and SFX legend Tom Savini, who worked on the first film, returned because he wanted to help kill off Jason, whom he helped create.

As always, be sure to send suggestions for any movies you’d like to see covered on the podcast. You can find all of Drek’s socials, links to past episodes, and even an option to leave a voice message on his show page here.

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