Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 27, 2016


Watch out for the hands!
FRIDAY THE 13TH PART III (1982). Director: Steve Miner.

Two years before, Chris (Dana Kimmell) ran off into the woods after an argument with her parents and encountered Jason Voorhees (Richard Brooker), who, unaccountably, let her survive. When Jason goes on his second killing spree  -- it was his mother who did the killing in the original Friday the 13th -- Chris winds up as the "final girl" battling for her life after everyone else in her weekend party has been killed. This third installment of the venerable horror series adds the "advantage" of 3D, which isn't very well utilized. Steven Miner's direction is pedestrian, but inevitably there are moments of suspense, shock and creepiness, and the climax with the brave and resourceful Chris fighting desperately against the maniacal Jason is undeniably tense and exciting. Kimmell is quite good as the "final girl" handling her terror and dismay with aplomb, but the rest of the actors are a mixed bag of the competent and the amateurish. Cheri Maugans offers a flavorful performance as nagging wife, Edna, who gets it with a needle, and Larry Zerner is effective as the geeky nerd who plays the fool to get attention. Most of the other cast members had very few credits, as apparently, this is not the kind of movie to build a career on. The movie has slick production values, and perhaps as much humor as horror. Aside from two sequences involving a hacked-in-half body and an unconvincing flying eyeball the movie is not that gory. No explanation is given for why Jason spared Chris the first time around, except that perhaps this was before he actually began murdering everyone in sight. The credit theme by Manfredini and Zager is snappy. This is the picture in which Jason gets his now-familiar hockey mask. Kimmell appeared on many TV shows including a couple of soap operas. Followed by Friday the 13th IV: The Final Chapter


angelman66 said...

This was my favorite of the series, Bill, because it was originally shown in theaters in 3D, and the 3D photography and technology was masterfully done. I remember a bloody knife nearly cutting my throat and other well-constructed tricks. Most 3D films I have seen since have not measured up to Friday the 13th Part 3 in 3D...interesting since we are supposed to be in the middle of the Virtual Reality age...

William said...

I saw it in theaters but honestly don't remember what I thought of the 3D effects. Watched in 2D, of course, it looks much different, although it's obvious which scenes were meant for 3D.