The Drudgeon reviews Friday The 13th – Part III

Friday The 13th - Part IIIaka Friday The 13th – Part 3D
95 min., 1982
Written by Martin Kitrosser/Carol Watson
Directed by Steve Miner
Language: English
My rating: ★★★

Another good one, but it’s starting to show some wear.

* * *

The movie picks up one day after the events of part 2 with Chrissy “Chris” Higgins (Dana Kimmell) heading to Higgins Haven with some friends.  Among them are pregnant Debbie (Tracie Savage) and her man Andy (Jeffrey Rogers), prankster Shelly (Larry Zerner) and his “date” Vera (Catherine Parks), and lastly the two hippies Chuck (David Katims) and Chili (Rachel Howard).  Once they get to Higgins Haven we meet Chris’ ex, Rick (Paul Kratka) who still has feelings for her.  Sometime later Vera and Shelly go into town to get some supplies, but while at the convenience store they run into trouble, and that trouble is a three person gang, Leader Ali (Nick Savage), and underlings Fox (Gloria Charles) and Loco (Kevin O’Brien).  As the movie moves along we learn that two years ago Chris was attacked by a strange deformed man who kinda looks like Jason and that’s when the killings really start to begin.  Is it actually Jason or is someone else attacking the guests of Higgins Haven?

As the Friday The 13th series goes along acting is one of the things that I tend to pretty much write off, and this one is really the beginning of that.  The acting in the first and second are pretty good, but this is the one where the acting takes a backseat to the killing and gore.  Most of the characters this time around are just bland and their “type” (prankster, gang member, etc.) is all you really get from them.  This was there in the last movies but they had a least a little more behind them that just that.  With that being said, there were actually a few that did a good job with the acting.  First was Dana Kimmell who had the strongest performance.  From the get go she seems very innocent, but as it goes along she does stand on her own two legs and fights.  My favorite part with her is towards the end when she uses the axe and hits the killer in the head with it, but he keeps approaching her.  She has this look of complete disbelief as he keeps coming and man can she really sell that look.  On the opposite side of the acting spectrum was Gloria Charles.  Now she doesn’t have the biggest part in the movie and there are others that did worse at other times, but she was just consistently bad.  I realize that she is supposed to be a gang member and that gang members are supposed to be hardcore, but her character and the way she acted the part were just completely lame, especially when she is walking through the barn.  The rest of the cast is a mixed bag from okay to really good.

This being a Friday The 13th movie, my expectation of the level of violence and gore to rise was met.  The gore level is raised and the kills are even more over the top, but not to the point of ridiculous (yet), the handstand kill is great and the harpoon kill is also really good.  Now I have to bring up the major flaw of the movie, at least in the effects department.  It’s in 3-D.  Maybe the effect of 3-D was really good on the big screen, but when was the last time you were able to go see Friday The 13th – Part III in the theaters.  That’s right, not very often.  So the transition to the small screen really suffers from the (now non) 3-D.  Mainly because every time it’s a 3-D scene it’s sticks out (pun intended) like a sore thumb and takes you out of the film.  Does it destroy the movie?  Well it actually almost does.  That aside the effects are pretty solid throughout the movie.

In the end this is a good sequel.  It does have its flaws, mainly the 3-D and the generic characters, but as the series moves along the spotlight on the characters becomes less of the focus and the deaths and inventive (in other words, how over-the-top they can get) ways to off someone takes center stage.  Is that a problem?  To some it will be, but if you know that from the beginning (part three that is), then you shouldn’t have any gripes.

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About The Drudgeon

I don't remember my real name or where I came from. All I know is that I'm traped in an underground cave with nothing but a TV, DVD player and a notebook and pen. They keep calling me The Drudgeon, I don't even know what that means. Someone keeps dropping horror movies in and yelling at me to watch them and write about what I watch. Then I eat the DVD and case, because they tell me if I consume the horror I will understand the horror. I think there are three of them. So if you are reading this right now, HELP ME!!!!!!! OUCH!!!! Someone just poked me with a sea urchin attacked to a pool cue, what the fuck is going on?
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