Freddy vs. Jason ★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

I am totally the sort of idiot who when breaking into the mental institution with a group of rogue teenagers in order to steal a bunch of psychotropic medication which prevents dreams will decide that it is a great idea to fire up a joint in the middle of the hospital panopticon security center and assume it might be totally OK to have a giant Freddypillar shotgun hookah smoke into your face because what is the worst that could happen and even if you are going to die horribly under the influence of whatever Freddy Krueger thinks marijuana must be like in dream hell at least you will die high. I am also the sort of idiot who thinks that driving in an interior-carpeted van with a semi-naked woman fighting a giant serpent airbrushed onto the side of it in which also has the words in huge fake-medieval lettering 'The Serpent' on the front of the van in case its thematics escape immediate cognition in order to watch a live-action PS2 arena fight between Freddy and Jason is the best thing one could do on a Friday night to celebrate the arrival of fall, after Jason has already crashed your ridiculous car-headlight-lit cornfield rave where he murdered most everyone. A rave can apparently be distinguished from a normal high school cornfield party by dressing up its sexual predators in MORE glowsticks than usual. Gross.

I love this stupid movie so very much. Jason is precisely the kind of messed-up kid that Freddy would torture except that he is all grown up and dead over and over and over which makes the torture potentially limitless but also makes Jason somewhat invulnerable to Freddy's attacks. Jason STARTS this movie in Hell and then walks to Springwood from Camp Crystal Lake but gets to drive back in an awesome van. Movies where Jason goes on vacation to Manhattan, to Hell, to Space are always special because Jason draws elemental strength from Camp Crystal Lake so if there was a starting point where you choose your character to fight and before it says 'Fight!!!' there would be a scene of Jason raising his machete in a leafy environment surrounded by collapsed cabins and if you chose Freddy instead you would obviously be in a dank overheated boiler room surrounded by stuff collected from your victims and you would raise your claw in the air before it said 'Fight!!!' and then you would fight. This movie is exactly that, with lots of stuff in the arena to use against one another which is there for no logical reason except to do further damage and demonstrate that the arena itself can be altered by the force of your immortal combat.

Prior to that, though, Freddy Vs. Jason offers us a trio of slasher heroines in Monica Keena, Kelly Rowland and Katharine Isabelle which is completely rad. Monica Keena in particular brings a tremendous amount of heart and panic and empathy to her slasher movie role and Freddy is extra menacing and vile towards her and indeed to everyone in this movie, including Jason, whom he has manipulated and abused in order to serve Freddy's will. Freddy delivers jokes in the movie the way a drunk leering uncle everyone wishes would go home but stays on well after the party ends might. Katharine Isabelle's portrayal of a teenager descending into alcoholism under the weight of her abusive relationship and its aftermath is relatively brief but heartbreaking. Kelly Rowland also is crippled by self-doubt and body dysmorphia although she has the courage to insult Freddy to his face when it matters the most. The kids in this movie have been denied their nightmares by well-meaning parents who have sought to erase Freddy from Springwood's reality by suppressing his memory and the ability of the kids to connect to him through their dreams. This sort of works, but it leaves an uneasy vacancy at center of their world, a sense that everything is wrong, to be filled with conspiracy theory and aimless self-destruction. Kids need to be able to know and name the demons which are stalking them or they will otherwise fall prey to them again and again.

Please let there be a Freddy Vs. Jason 2 and this time call it Jason Vs. Freddy because for real Jason would still be angry about being manipulated and tortured by Freddy in this manner. Jason is not the kind of person who forgets a grudge easily as has been conclusively demonstrated. Of course I would also be on board to letting Jason rest for a while and having a Freddy Vs. Chucky movie instead because they would totally hate each other being sarcastic undead killers and Freddy's spirit could be trapped in a doll through magickal rituals enacted by Chucky because of course! And who wouldn't want to see Robert Englund vs. Brad Dourif? I am just rambling now I guess. Time to load up the Killswitch Engage and run the end credits!

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