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Review Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988): Jason versus Tina. Tina? Who is Tina? Exactly!

genre: horror, slasher

Originally Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood was intended to set up Jason against Freddy Krueger. However Paramount Pictures and New Line Cinema couldn't come to an agreement so that project was cancelled. Instead they replaced Freddy Krueger with Tina. A new character with psychic powers. It is kind of ridiculous and awesome at the same. 

The film starts where a narrator is telling the tale of the evil that is Jason and how Tommy Jarvis managed to put a stop to Jason by immobilizing him in Crystal Lake. Then it cuts to Crystal Lake somewhere in the future where we hear a couple fighting in the cabin near the lake where Jason resides. Their daughter is outside and hears her father hit her mother. She can't take it no more and decides to flee from the scene by jumping into the boat and sailing off to wherever. Her father comes after her concerned for her safety but the daughter full of rage yells at him and then crushes the wooden walkway her father was standing on. 

First of all. I don't care how much time has passed. What is wrong with people? Why would they still rent out cabins in Crystal Lake. All these deaths and tragedies and you act like nothing happened? Whether you believe in the myths surrounding Jason Voorhees or not. The murders still occurred. Such a place is filled with darkness and negative energy. Who in their right mind would want to stay there even if only to recreate? There should be a law that would prevent something like that, seriously. Second, is it me or did young Tina look like Heather O' Rourke (Poltergeist)? Anyway, her father dies and again we cut to a scene where some time has passed and we see an older, much older Tina (Lar Park-Lincoln) returning to Crystal Lake so that she can recover from whatever is ailing her. Dr. Crews is adamant that it will cure her. Sure that never has gone wrong before. Dr. Crews played by Terry Kiser is one of the most despicable characters in the entire franchise. It can be argued that he is even worse than Jason. Dr. Crews is not interested in curing Tina. All he wants is for her to demonstrate her psychic abilities and he knows that bringing her to the place that started her trauma is going to trigger them. On top of that he is all about self preservation who has no trouble using other people as shield. Tina who is distressed about Dr. Crews pushing her, goes outside to the lake where somehow she senses something which leads to Tina using her power. This results in Jason being awakened and released from his shackles. Jason comes out of the water exchanges a look with Tina and she faints. 

Like I said, brilliant idea. I know that they implied that Tina was sensing her father and perhaps she was trying to reach out to him. But did she forget that her father wasn't chained up? If she can sense and see couldn't she see that this wasn't her father but Jason? This scene doesn't make any sense and really requires you to suspend disbelief. Even with all the weirdness before this psychic thing is a little too much. Jason is loose and doesn't waste a second to catch up on doing what he does best. Unfortunately because of the required editing to avoid an X rating we don't get to enjoy the blood and gore when people are killed. One of the main attractions when it's zombie Jason concerned. This rating system they have in the U.S. is downright broken and illogical. Worse of all is the fact that the cut scenes can't be used any more since they don't exist otherwise we could have enjoyed an uncut version. Celluloid murder. Meanwhile Tina is struggling with what she saw, is seeing and what she can do. Of course most people declare her looney tunes while we know she is not. Couple of deaths later only she and her new boyfriend Nick (Kevin Spirtas) are left and the long awaited battle is on. Jason versus Tina. Tina handles herself pretty well for the most part. But she keeps getting startled and surprised by Jason. One minute she is full confidence and ready to shred Jason with her mind the other she screams her lungs out. It doesn't make sense. Fortunately due to a surprise visit from someone Jason is finally dealt with. Until the next sequel at least. This last surprise is beyond ridiculous. To be fair, how can you top an already over the top film if you don't go extreme?

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood changed in tone and went back to being more serious while at the same asking too much from the viewer to suspend disbelief. Even when you are accepting of the supernatural elements in this franchise there should be some kind of logic within this world to make it acceptable. Naturally the writers had Freddy Krueger in mind so this Tina plot was doomed from the start. The result is that this part is unintentionally hilarious which is not the same as the intentional comedy in Jason Lives. Still because of the craziness this film is effective to an extent. It might not remotely be creepy or scary but it is entertaining.

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