* 'Back Online. Back On DOODIE.' is something new I want to bring to the blog. There's a lot of times where people go back to an older movie they once loved and end up having nostalgia take a big bite out of their ass. But how often does someone go back to a movie they once thought was a steaming pile of crap... and end up falling in love with it? That's what this is about. Each entry will be from a different buddy/buddette blogger. I was originally gonna run this as a week long theme, then I thought it might work better long term. Maybe once a month or even bi-monthly. But rest assured, this won't be the last time shit turns out smelling like a rose on the blog. *
Without further ado, here's Matthew House on Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan...
Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan
My memories of the first time I watched Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan are as vivid as if it had happened just this afternoon. I’m thinking it was probably about ‘91 or ‘92 (so I was around 15 years old), and me, my best bud Chris and these two girls Sharon and Kristyne rented a couple of movies to watch at Sharon’s house. The movies chosen were Martin Scorsese’s 1991 remake of Cape Fear and Jason’s latest foray into teen slaying madness, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, both of which were chosen by my fellow horror loving buddy and myself, of course.
Anyway, as we all uncomfortably sat on Sharon’s bed (anymore than two’s a crowd when it’s not an orgy), we decided to watch Cape Fear first, which left the lot of us pretty blown away by just how intense it was. I mean, if anything is scary, it’s DeNiro in that film. Unfortunately, however, this did not bode well for Jason, whose journey to Manhattan now had some seriously stiff competition to live up to. There was only one way that this could end: failure for the masked maniac. And soon this feeling of utter disappointment came across the room and never let up. This was especially true for me, as I was really excited to see, well, Jason take Manhattan! But of course we all know how that went.
At the end of the day, Jason Takes Manhattan was a complete travesty, and while this was certainly compounded by watching a pretty great film in Cape Fear beforehand, I don’t think our/my feelings would have been much different had we not watched that film first. Either way, this viewing resulted in an intense disdain for Jason Takes Manhattan, leaving a taste in my mouth that could not be washed away for many years to come. But alas, just as Jason found his monstrous facade washed away by sewer water, only to reveal the frightened child that was trapped inside, I somehow was able to warm up to Jason Takes Manhattan.
I’m not sure exactly when my feelings changed about the film, as the healing seems to have taken many many years to occur. For whatever reason, Jason Takes Manhattan chipped away at my outer shell until the point when one day I realised that I do actually enjoy the film. In fact, I enjoy it quite a bit. Not because it’s actually good, per say, because it’s really not. It is, however, a whole lot of ridiculous fun, and I believe my enjoyment started to come as I grew to be more appreciative of bad movies as I got older. And Jason Takes Manhattan certainly delivers in that department. I mean, in what other film can you watch a sexy rock goddess jamming balls on her electric guitar in the ship’s machine room just so she can get the best acoustics?!
While the film takes an hour to get to New York - which is possibly the biggest complaint that most have about it - the bigger misstep is the fact that the film literally only features about five minutes of Jason in Times Square wrapped around 25 minutes of Canadian lensed back alleys, rooftops and sewers. But it’s not like you can tell, or anything. Furthermore, the people behind Jason Takes Manhattan do their best to completely insult the city by feeding into every New York stereotype one could imagine. From the drug abusing, kidnapping, rapist group of muggers to the nasty barrel of toxic waste just sitting in an alleyway, New York is made to look as trashy as possible In Jason Takes Manhattan.
It might sound like I am trashing the movie, and that’s because I am. As I said, it’s awful, but it is those awful aspects of Jason Takes Manhattan that I have come to appreciate over the years. I look at Jason Takes Manhattan in the same way that I look at a good friend telling me a bad joke. I might not laugh at his or her bad joke because, quite frankly, it sucks, but I am more than capable of laughing at my friend for actually telling it. Honestly, I don’t think there is any better way to describe my enjoyment of Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan.
P.S. Kelly Hu is as fly as a falcon!
Matthew House runs the blog, Chuck Norris Ate My Baby, another blog that I have been reading for roughly two years now. I always love having Mr. House contribute, because he's a super nice dude and always brings the funny. Thanks buddy!
Check out the greatness that is Chuck Norris Ate My Baby HERE!