out of Five
Running time: 105
Entertaining, extremely gory horror flick that should please fans of both franchises.
Wes Craven’s Nightmare on Elm Street (featuring razor-gloved Freddy Kreuger) and Sean Cunningham’s Friday the 13th (featuring hockey-masked, machete-wielding Jason Voorhees) were two of the most popular horror movies of the 1980s.
They each went on to spawn successful franchises, knocking up an astonishing 17 movies between them (seven Nightmares, ten Fridays). Initially, the franchises were at different studios, but in 1993, New Line Pictures acquired the rights to the Friday the 13th movies, fully intending to pit the two “pop horror icons” against each other one day. The result is an enjoyably bloody gore-fest that should please fans of both Jason and Freddy.
Freddy Has A Cunning Plan…
The plot is amusing and gets in some sly references to the fact that Freddy hasn’t had a movie out in quite some time (Jason, in contrast, was in space just last year). Freddy (Robert Englund) has been defeated because everyone in Springwood has forgotten who he is, so no-one dreams about him anymore.
On top of that, all the kids who haven't forgotten him have all been packed off to an insane asylum, where they're kept doped up on dream suppressants.
However, Freddy has a Cunning Plan. He releases Jason (Ken Kirzinger) from Hell (by impersonating his mother) and pushes the button marked 'Start Killing Machine'. Jason starts killing people, one of the kids hears the cops say "Oh no! Freddy Krueger is back!", people suddenly start finding out about him and – bingo - Freddy's on the loose again. However, when Jason starts stealing Freddy’s victims from under his nose, he realizes he’s created a monster and that Springwood isn’t big enough for both of them…
Full Rosta Of Promiscuous Teen Victims
Of course, no slasher flick is complete without a cast of Attractive Teens. They include Monica Keena (from Dawson’s Creek) as Lori, Jason Ritter, Destiny’s Child’s Kelly Rowland and Katharine ‘Ginger Snaps’ Isabelle (and her Body Double) as Lori’s Drunken Promiscuous Friend. There’s also a minor character doing a damn fine impression of Jay from the Kevin Smith movies, who also gets to utter the film’s best throwaway line: “Dude, that goalie was SERIOUSLY pissed off about something…”
Director Ronny Yu’s previous horror movie movies include The Bride With White Hair and 1998’s surprise hit Bride of Chucky (aka Chucky Gets Lucky) so he knows a thing or two about delivering shocks, humor and lashings of the red stuff.
Accordingly, the gore factor is extremely high and there are some impressive set pieces (e.g. Jason's arrival in a corn field of partying teens), even though the film isn’t really all that scary, despite its share of shocks.
In short, this is well worth seeing if you like this sort of thing – it has a decent plot, the acting is good, the gore scenes are well-handled and there are several good gags. Also, you can rest assured that no Annoying Critics will give away the ending because the pesky distributors only previewed a print with the last 60 seconds missing.