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Friday the 13th Part 3: 3D: Deluxe Edition DVD Review

Friday the 13th Part 3: 3D: Deluxe Edition

February 23, 2009

Director: Steve Miner,
Starring: Dana Kimmell, Paul Kratka, Nick Savage, Rachel Howard, Richard Brooker,

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DVD Review

Friday the 13th Part 3 (1982) tried to keep things interesting in the franchise by cashing in on the 3-D craze of the early to mid-1980s. This gave the filmmakers an excuse to stage the numerous kills for 3-D effect with knives, machetes and even hot pokers flying out at the audience. With this installment one is baffled at why anyone would want to keep going back to Camp Crystal Lake after the events in the first two films? I guess you’re not really supposed to be thinking about this when watching these films or the whole façade falls flat.

Jason (Brooker) managed to survive Part 2 (1981) (what a surprise) but is on the run from the authorities after killing eight camp counselors in the previous film. A group of five teens and two aging hippies take a trip to Crystal Lake unaware of the massacre that has just gone down. One of them, Chris (Kimmell), meets up with her boyfriend Rick (Kratka) at a cabin on the lake. Over the weekend, her friends are systematically killed off by Jason who’s clearly pissed off at almost being killed in the previous installment.

It’s pretty obvious that Chris is being set up as the “final girl”: she has a mysterious traumatic past and refuses to have sex with her boyfriend because, as slasher films have taught us, if you have sex, you die. The filmmakers trot out all kinds of clichés: there’s the crazy old man that tries to warn our protagonists, the unfriendly locals, surly bikers, the nerdy ugly kid, and so on. It’s pretty easy to figure out who’s going to get it and when but there is almost a sense comfortable familiarity in this predictable formula.

As you would imagine there are all kinds of 3-D gags as a snake lunges out at the camera, a kid holds a baseball bat, a yo-yo is dangled right at it, and so on. In a nice touch, and the only reason to get edition, you now have the option to watch Part 3 in 3-D (two sets of glasses are included), which does improve the experience of watching this film considerably. Other than this novelty, the film is notable for the first appearance of Jason’s iconic hockey mask. While not the best installment in this long-running franchise, it is certainly far from being the worst either.

Special Features:

Absent from this edition is an audio commentary that was included on the box set so you should probably hold onto it if you’re a completist.

The only other extra is a theatrical trailer.

J.D. is a freelance writer who is currently doing research for a book on the films of Michael Mann. He likes reading anything written by Jack Kerouac, James Ellroy, J.D. Salinger, Harlan Ellison or Thomas Pynchon. J.D. is currently addicted to the T.V. series 24 and enjoys drinking a lot of Sprite. This is not a blatant plug for the beverage but if they ever decided to give him a lifetime supply he certainly wouldn’t turn them down.
view all DVD reviews by JD Lafrance

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Rating: 75%

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