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Freddy vs. Jason
cast: Ken Kirzinger, Robert Englund, Monica Keena, Kelly Rowland, and Jason Ritter

director: Ronny Yu

97 minutes (18) 2003
EV VHS rental or retail
Also available to rent or buy on DVD

RATING: 5/10
reviewed by John Percival
The idea of this movie is great: two kings of horror movies together and buckets of blood. Freddy Krueger is in Hell after being killed by his daughter four years previously. He needs the dreams of the residents of Springwood to fuel his existence, but the town has been covering up any reference to him in order to make people forget and leave him powerless. Not being too happy with this, Freddy embarks on a plan to free Jason Voorhees from his own hell and send him to Elm Street to strike fear into the teenagers and bring Freddy back. However Jason won't stop killing Freddy's 'children' and so Freddy takes him on, and so follows lots of running and screaming from the teenagers.
   The film itself is certainly watchable and it benefits from some great effects but it is not in the same league of the legendary franchises that it's based upon. Whether intentionally or not it manages to use nearly every single horror movie plot device or cliché, such as teenagers walking around by themselves or failing to notice some huge death machine lumbering up behind them. The clichés do however remove any instances of suspense and, frankly, if you jump during this movie then you will jump at anything.
   The two monsters, Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) and Jason Vorhees (Ken Kirzinger), are horror movie icons who have, over a generation, scared millions of people, but here Freddy is reduced a cartoon character by way of too much humorous dialogue. I don't want Freddy to be funny I want him to be terrifying. Similarly Jason is about as scary as Lurch from The Adams Family, which is truly a shame. The huge battle towards the end with the two villains against each other really gives you little reason to care who wins. Instead it descends into a theatrical competition of who can squirt more blood. If anyone has seen an early Alice Cooper concert they will know what I mean. The cast of teenage 'fodder' is a truly mixed-ability bunch with the focus being on Lori, interestingly acted by Monica Keena, who really does try to convince. Included also is Destiny Child's Kelly Rowland who does appears slightly out of her depth with the acting but that can be forgiven by her great exit.
   The film has certainly benefited from the modern special effects that are available now and they are quite enjoyable but their ultimate result appears to be more 'trick or treat' than terrifying. Fans will enjoy the film for the two main characters and also the over the top violence and rivers of blood. If you forgive the flaws and watch it for what it is, then it is worth seeing. It is 'Celebrity Deathmatch' as it should be done. However, if you want to see a scary slasher movie then this is not it.
NEXT

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