Disqus for Friday The 13th: The Film Franchise




The Inglorious Send Off To Paramount's Friday The 13th Franchise

With the 1980's winding down and an unthinkable run of box office success coming to a close, Paramount Pictures decided to greenlight one last desperate attempt to sell Jason Voorhees to audiences. The premise of Jason running around New York may have signaled the end of the franchise for some fans, but the prospects of what could be done with the character in a large city far outweighed those concerns in the eyes of many others. The well documented budget constraints destroyed any chance of Jason actually being in Manhattan for more than five minutes, leaving fans overall disappointed. However, even those monetary concerns do not excuse the awful ending of Friday The 13th Part 8: Jason Takes Manhattan.

After chasing Rennie and Sean to a New York diner, Jason dispatches of a rather large cook (Ken Kirzinger, who also played Jason in the film in a few scenes as well as full time in Freddy vs Jason) and proceeds to follow the kids into the sewer system. This is where the film completely falls apart. While in the sewer, the teens run into a sanitation worker who warns the sewer flushes out with toxic waste every night at midnight. This fact in the film has always been a point of contention among the Friday The 13th community for many years as most people are aware that this would never happen, especially in a major city. With that being said, it has a level of suspension of disbelief to allow for the film to continue. From here on out, though, the ending of Jason Takes Manhattan is almost unwatchable.

After killing the sanitation worker and knocking out Sean, Jason Voorhees begins chasing Rennie through the sewers of New York and is then ambushed by the female teen with a conveniently placed bucket of toxic waste! It is very apparent that the filmmakers really think New York is full of toxic waste. What a dirty city, right? Perhaps some of this may be true before the Giuliani era began in the city, but for the purposes of the film, we can even forgive the ridiculous idea of a bucket of toxic waste laying around. So, Rennie throws the toxic concoction at Jason and he begins screaming, writhing in pain and ripping the mask off his face to reveal the absolute worst make-up effects for Jason ever created!

This whole sequence is laughable and a kick in the face to the fans. For one, Jason is a zombie. Why would he be in pain at all? Second, even a human Jason from the earlier films would never have screamed so much like a whiny kid. While Jason cries out like a baby, shaking his fist in the air, Rennie runs away again. Jason then stumbles along a wall and eventually catches up to a Rennie and a revived Sean as the pair try to escape the sewer via a ladder to the surface before the toxic waste floods the tunnels.

The even more outrageous part of the ending is yet to come as Jason, trying to grab at the feet of his would-be victims, realizes the toxic waste is flooding the sewer and udders the words, "mommy, don't let me drown. Mommy!" If that isn't enough to make fans scream in agony, Jason then spews out water from his mouth and is hit with the chemical waste. The result of this toxic bath is that he turns back into a little child!

The last few minutes of the film are so nonsensical that even I, a huge champion of the franchise, cannot watch this ending to the film any more. One of the most menacing horror icons of our generation is reduced to screaming, shaking his fist, yelling for his mommy, and then changing back into a kid?

Paramount had indeed given up and thrown in the towel. There was no way they were ever thinking about making a another film after approving this mess of an ending. What an inglorious end to Paramount's bloody legacy of Friday The 13th and Jason Voorhees.

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