Monday, October 13, 2014

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (USA/Canada, 1989) - Color, Director(s): Rob Hedden
MPAA Rating: R
[UK: 18]
Approx. 100 min.

Z-rating: 2.5 stars out of 5

Cheese Factor: 4 stars out of 5

Following the end of Part VII where Tina uses her psychokinetic powers to resurrect her father, who jumps out of the water with chains to drag Jason back down to the bottom of Crystal Lake, Jason is once again at rest at the bottom of the lake. A young couple is out on a boat and their anchor accidentally drags across a power line, which once again revives Jason via electricity. Jason climbs on board the boat and, just his luck, the boyfriend just finished playing a dumb joke on his girlfriend wearing Jason's iconic hockey mask. Seeing as his last mask was torn apart in his fight with Tina, he totally lucked out finding another one right after coming up out of the water again.


We cut to a cruise ship preparing to depart with a graduating high school class boarding it. Keep an eye out for a young Kelly Hu as one of the high school students. Stowing away is none other Jason Voorhees himself. Despite the subtitle being Jason Takes Manhattan, I've heard this movie called Jason on a boat or Jason takes a cruise cause a majority of it does take place on that cruise ship. When they finally get to New York, that's when all the real fun begins. There's the famous scene where Jason boots the ghetto blaster in the middle of Times Square, he teaches a couple of punks a lesson after they rob the main characters, and there's even a moment where he sees his own mask up on a billboard. Before they get to New York, it's pretty much like any other Friday movie except they're on a boat instead of in cabins. The thing is, it's so much more fun when he actually gets to terrorize NYC that it makes you wish the entire movie took place in the Big Apple.

Yes, he does!

Nudity: There is a bit of nudity when the first couple are doing the horizontal monster mash before Jason shows up. Then again after one of the students takes a shower after seducing her teacher but Jason gets to her before she gets a chance to put any clothes on.

Gore: This one is pretty tame as far as these Friday films go, not a lot of violent death. I think they were going for more humor this time around. There's a fight scene on a rooftop in NYC where one of the students, who's a boxer, tries to fight Jason with his bare hands. You know it's not going to turn out well for the kid but Jason just lets him give it all he's got before doing anything. Then like something out of Killer Klown from Outer Space, Jason knocks his block off in one hit.

Basically, something like this

Awesome: This is easily the cheesiest of the movies up to this point, you can tell they were trying to go for comedy more than straight horror. This is also the weakest entry since Part V but between the two, I definitely prefer this one. This one is so bad it's good, but Part V was just plain bad. I think everyone wanted to see Jason terrorize NYC and kill a bunch of people in Times Square. For some reason, he was really focused on getting those kids from Crystal Lake. There's literally a single line of dialogue that mentions these kids are "the last ones" as if there was a deeper story behind why Jason is after them but this is never explained in any more detail. The ending in New York's sewer system didn't make a whole lot of sense but I guess anything can happen down there. From what I understand, there's a ton of crazy stuff going on down there. Giant alligators, mutants, C.H.U.D.s, Ninja Turtles, mole people, and giant cockroaches pretending to be people to name a few. Although it wasn't painfully bad, this is one of the more forgettable entries in franchise.