12 Days of Friday, Day 9: Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Editor Alex Vo watches a Friday the 13th movie daily until the reboot.



Day Nine: Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday

Okay, so it turns out Jason isn't a zombie (or a little kid again according to the end of Jason Takes Manhattan). According to Jason Goes to Hell, it's a parasitic worm that turns people into invincible Jason-esque monsters, capable of transferring from person to person. The worm's ultimate goal: to kill the Voorhees bloodline, as only a Voorhees can truly defeat Jason using some Dagger O' Magic. Yeah, is it any wonder this isn't very popular with fans?

I'll first note that I watched the widely-available unrated version. I can't comment on how much this version does or does not improve upon the R-rated version (it's certainly the grossest Friday yet), but, overall, it's still a bad movie. 

It did, however, hold my attention, or at least mild interest, throughout. Likely, this is a result of having watched nine Friday movies over the past nine days: those are not normal movie-watching circumstances, so after struggling to find anything compelling to write about in parts 6 through 8 (all variations on a stale theme), I'm going to latch onto anything weird that creeps into this series. And, you have to admit, Jason Goes to Hell is pretty damn weird.
Original Friday the 13th director Sean Cunningham returns to the series as producer and we clearly see his contempt for what the series had become and the audience that supported it (which I briefly touched upon in my first article). You guys want a fitting finale to the series you followed for nearly 15 years? Nope! Instead, here's a movie about WORMS. I was in elementary school when this movie came out so I can't say I was ever affected by this betrayal (which may also be why I don't have a seething hatred for the movie), but the closest I can equate this to is when Larry David returned for the Seinfeld finale, where his scorn for the characters and audience came through with every cynical joke.
You know, like many, I like traveling host horror such as The Thing or Fallen. Too bad Jason Goes to Hell mucks up this concept at every turn. Director Adam Marcus sticks to the same slasher routine when he had a chance to change it up. Harry Manfredini's score is obnoxious and blatty. The plot has a bunch of cheap, arbitrary rules (a possessed person appears as Jason in mirrors for some reason, and sometimes a possessed person can talk and sometimes they can't). And, for some reason, they gave Jason a pink puffy head. Has he ever looked worse? And if this is a story about bloodlines, why don't we learn anything about papa Voorhees?
In its favor, Jason Goes to Hell does have a strong plot arc (we learn clearly what Jason is and how to defeat him), something that's absent from the rest of the series. The climax takes place in front the Voorhees mansion, where Jason gets stabbed in the heart by the magic dagger. A cheesy beam of light opens from the sky and some scaly demon hands drag Jason down to hell. The final 20 seconds shows the heroes walking into the sunset to a reprise of elegant ending music of the first Friday the 13th. Freddy Krueger's clawed hands reaches out from the dirt and pull Jason's hockey mask down. I admit this is a rather satisfying close, even if the movie as a whole isn't.


Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday
Vital Stats:

  • Body Count: 24. Or, 1, if you count only kills by Jason Voorhees proper.
  • Survivors: 3.
  • Number of teens killed: 5. Series low.
  • Number of stalled cars: 0. (Second time!)
  • Number of people possessed: 4.
  • Number of Jason-approved weapons: 8. Autopsy probe, pencil, razor, spike, knife-sharpener, deep-fat fryer, barbecue skewer, machete.

Memories of Crystal Lake:

  • Steve Barton of Dread Central: "So now New Line has rescued the series from the clueless over at Paramount, and what do they do? We go from not having blood to not having Jason AGAIN! Did no one learn anything from Part 5? Jason in this flick is a little demon worm who jumps from body to body trying to get back to the womb of a Voorhees so he can be reborn. Along the way he wrecks a diner, collects props from other movies like the Evil Dead book, and shaves people. That's right. Jason now has a penchant for preening! I would have loved to have been there for this pitch! "Dude, we so need to have Jason shave somebody! The homo-erotic overtones alone will be enough to scare the s--t out of people." Homo-erotic .... Shaving. Are you friggin' kidding me?"

Tomorrow: Jason. In space.


Schedule of Fridays:

Comments

KoolKatAWK

Adam Kelley

Lol. I still like the diner gun battle. And I will take this one over Part 8 or even Freddy vs Jason any day of the week.

Feb 10 - 07:06 PM

prestonkm

Preston Matlock

I can't wait to watch this one. I am almost certain, for some reason, that I'm definitely going to like this one. Anyways, it was a good read, and great work Alex!!!

Feb 10 - 07:33 PM

inactive user

Jared King

Deep fat fryer? Barbeque skewer? Who's he eating? Anyway, Jason goes to hell, and you're right there with him in this film. I actually saw this... sort of. Not fully, I turned it off, I hated it. I feel for you Vo.

Feb 10 - 08:06 PM

The Great One

A Z

This and Jason X are the only ones I haven't seen...I take it that's a good thing

Feb 10 - 08:14 PM

ZigBallistic

marshall westbrook

I saw a dvd today that had this, Jason X, and Freddy vs Jason on it for 19.99. I might have to pick it up just to close the loop, but I feel like I would be enabling crappy horror films. Still, if people are saying its better than Freddy vs Jason, I might have to watch anywho, since I liked F vs J.

Feb 10 - 08:23 PM

RamALamADingDong

That Guy

The only two I have not seen is this one and Jason X. I'm probably a happier person for that. Though there are a few I have seen I would like to expel from my memory.

Feb 10 - 08:24 PM

darrinsgoodman

DARRIN GOODMAN

THE ONE WITH THE WORM!

I can understand why fans didn't like this one because it isn't your typical "friday the 13th" film but i enjoyed it a lot if nothing more than its level of gore - oh yeah and that freddy vs jason tease at the end of course!some impressive kills. some confusing plot lines - why did the guy eat the heart to start this mess? the muppet hands from hell really? hot naked girl in the woods/cabin at the beginning marks for the best first ten minutes of all friday films - all downhill from there i guess for many.

Feb 10 - 08:40 PM

Darren W.

Darren Weaver

Yeah it only took a whole lot of law suites to have new line buy the rights to jason vorhees but...opps they forgot the friday the 13th part. but stil even if both freddy and jason are owned by the same company they still have to make Jason X. which is still at least better than this POS. before a not to bad VS movie considering AVP was awfull. but i can rant all day about Final Friday....the least amount of jason and to me its one of the most remembered from my generation.
Alex Vo you nailed this movie its a total WTF.

Feb 10 - 09:24 PM

kyle x.

kyle xy

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Feb 10 - 10:12 PM

adambomb

adam bomb

I agree with KoolKatAWK...I'll take this over Freddy Vs. Jason any time.
It doesn't resemble the other films of course, put people wanted something different and they got it.
At the time people were satisfied with it, it's pedigree has slid since it's first appearance.

Feb 10 - 10:18 PM

Zombies happen.

Serpent T Rainbow

I never understood the whole worm thing, Freddy went there too eventually. The only logical move from worms? Space. Oh yes tomorrow, one crappy film with the best kill in the series, how fun. Thank you for this marathon, I am glad you got to do it. I will see you next year with the Elm street fest.

Feb 10 - 10:19 PM

inactive user

Jared King

You can not be serious kyle x.! Give it up!

Feb 10 - 10:19 PM

jihad

jud winter

this movie has some serious cringe moments,worst movie in all the series.

Feb 10 - 10:38 PM

Mr. Bo Ziffer

Mr. Bo Ziffer

I remember watching this movie for the first time when I was in fourth grade. It was on regular cable, might have been BET, and I finished all of my homework early so I could catch it that night. Even at that age I knew it was crap. Maybe if I watched the uncut version now it would be a little better. But I doubt it.

Feb 11 - 02:50 AM

67299709

chris mcfall

this one sucked i think we all agree.the only cool part was freddys claw taking jasons mask to hell kinda setting up freddy vs jason ten years later which i liked much better than this piece of ****.

Feb 11 - 05:19 AM

Sean P.

Sean Plowman

This is a great movie. I think the 3 New Line movies (this, Jason X, and Freddy vs. Jason) are the best in the series. They are just fun movies, joyrides from start to finish and are very rewatchable. The unrated version has much better gore shots, so don't watch the R rated version, it's only reason to exist was to please the MPAA.

When I saw this in theaters, it was with a group of 12 friends, half of us 17 and half of us 16. The ticket taker told us that each of needed to be 17 to get in; we all started to leave but then the manager walked by and when he saw they were going to lose 12 ticket sales he told us only one of us needed to be 17 to get all of us in. That incident makes this movie all the sweeter for me!

Feb 11 - 06:02 AM

Matthew V.

Matthew Verish

How is this even a Friday the 13th movie? Jason gets blow up at the beginning and inserts his devil worm (hee hee) into normal looking people to do his bidding. Then he miraculously comes back--looking the same, mind you--at the end. This movie was the ultimate insult to Jason. This one never existed...

Feb 11 - 06:03 AM

Jason C Wilkerson

Jason Wilkerson

You know, funny as it is being a child of the 80's and all, I have actually only seen Jason X (which was absolutely horrible) and Freddy vs. Jason (which I thought was decent), I might have to go through and watch all of both series.

On another note, I find it kind of funny that he mentioned at Harry Manfredini. I work at American Express in customer service and I got a call from him, and once he found out my name was Jason the floodgates broke open. It was like talking to a regular fan on the street, but then I looked him up on IMDb and you can see why he's so proud of that acheivement!

Feb 11 - 07:42 AM

dustin s.

dustin steveson

Come on guys I mean this movie really wasnt all that bad... I mean sure it would have been better with more Jason, but I thought it was a pretty good chapter in the series... The worm idea was a little lame but you guys hade to like the Bounty Hunter character... Now Jason X on the other hand was the worst movie in the franchise!

Feb 11 - 09:24 AM

R A.

R Agee

I agree with dustin s. None of you can debate that Jason X is by far the worst. I've seen them all, and none of them come close to taking home the gold for most GD awful movie of the series as much as Jason X does. Someone earlier explained it perfectly in a post (I think it was a post in either Part I or II). Jason X is worse than those made for tv movies on the sci-fi channel. It's like a 9 year old was directing this movie....none of the scenes flow together, and Jason doesn't even look/act like the Jason we have been watching from the previous 8 films. So bad I'm not even sure how to describe it to be honest.

Feb 11 - 10:02 AM

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