Welcome to an exciting year-long project here at The Nerdy. 1984 was an exciting year for films giving us a lot of films that would go on to be beloved favorites and cult classics. Imagine a world where This is Spinal Tap and Repo Man hit theaters on the same day. That is the world of 1984.
We’re going to pick and choose which movies we hit, but right now the list stands at nearly three dozen.
Yes, we’re insane, but 1984 was that great of a year for film.
The articles will come out on the same day the films hit theaters in 1984 so that it is their true 35th anniversaries. All films are also watched again for the purposes of these reviews and are not being done from memory.
This time around it’s April 13, 1984, and we’re off to see Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter.
Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter Review
Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter feels more like a teen sex romp that a serial killer happens to wander through than a horror film.
It’s no secret that when this film was first greenlit it was to be the final film in the series and would have concluded a trilogy of Jason Voorhees movies. But when you make a movie for $2.6M and it goes on to do $32M, it’s difficult to say “no more.”
With the idea this was to be the last, however, it does color your viewing of the film. You feel as though it should be a celebration of glorious Jason mayhem, and instead, it turns into a teen film for nearly a third of it.
Picking up where the last film left off, Jason is believed dead and taken to the morgue where he, of course, wakes up and kills the coroner and a nurse. He then begins to head back to Crystal Lake, and this is where things take an odd turn. So far in the series, he has mostly killed teenagers who were engaging in sexual intercourse because that is what led to him drowning years ago. But as he heads ‘home,’ he kills a hitchhiker because… reasons?
And after the hitchhiker, Jason takes a nap apparently because we then focus heavily on the teen dance party happening in a cabin at the lake. We witness horrible dancing from Jimmy (Crispin Glover). We then watch Jimmy have MANY conversations about his luck with women and this topic seems to go on forever. When Jason finally does get back to killing, and Jimmy goes down for a bottle of wine after tormenting a woman with questions after having sex with her, you cheer for his demise. So long, Jimmy. We don’t have to deal with your awkwardness anymore.
After that, though it just is such a soulless movie. Jason moves from kill to kill, and none of them feel shocking or inventive. Jason stabs a person… Jason hacks a person… it’s just very machine-like. And I get that is Jason’s sole defining feature outside of his inability to die, but there’s no joy in it.
You have to remember that the 1980s were the golden era of the slasher film genre and we had far more engaging on-screen killers to haunt our dreams. (No, Freddy didn’t show up until later in the year.) It seems odd to call a movie about teens being killed en masse “joyless,” but it’s the only word to fit this film. Paramount wanted to get rid of the series, and it is clear that sentiment trickled down to what was on screen as well.
Considering what a joke the series became, perhaps everyone should have stuck to the original plan of ending here.
1984 Movie Reviews will return on May 4 with Breakin’ and Sixteen Candles!
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