Fright Fest 2017 Review #7 – Friday the 13th Part IV: The Final Chapter (1984)

A truly hacky effort

Subgenre:  Slasher

Summary:  Jason’s back for another round of lakeside killings.

Review:  What better way to honor this momentous day than by reviewing one of the great date-based horror franchises?  The rather misleadingly titled Final Chapter brings Jason back to his old haunts to dispatch another group of hormonal teenagers.  Also along for the mayhem is the vacationing Jarvis family, consisting of Mrs. Jarvis, her teenage daughter Trish, and her twelve-year-old son Tommy.

Anyone familiar with the series’ other entries can guess where it goes from here.  The teens party and couple up; Jason stalks them and picks them off one by one.  All of these scenes are standard operating procedure for the Friday series, but the movie (slightly) twists the formula with by throwing a family into the mix.

The truth is, I’ve never really liked the Friday the 13th series; yes, it’s proved influential in the genre, and yes, Jason has earned his icon status, but the movies themselves just aren’t that good, and Part IV is no exception.  There’s nothing here that other slashers – including ones that have come out since – haven’t done better, and it’s hard not to write the whole thing off as a cynical cash-grab.  Admittedly, I don’t have the nostalgia that seems to fuel many fans’ love of the series, but that hardly offsets its general low quality.  Really, all this movie has going for it are some OK kills, a generous helping of T&A, and a few novelty points gained by the presence of Corey Feldman and Crispin Glover.  That’s pretty much it, although the infamous dance scene doesn’t disappoint.

The Verdict:  Friday the 13th Part IV is just another slasher movie, and not much else.  I give it four disfigured dimwits out of ten.

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