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DVD: Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning

Corey Feldman was supposed to reprise his role as Tommy Jarvis in “Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning,” the fifth installment in the Jason horror franchise, but he had a conflict with a little movie called “The Goonies” that took him away from doing it. Yes, he is in a cameo that bridges the “Part VI” story to this one, but for the most part, he is only there in his character.

The older version of Tommy is played by John Shepherd, who actually has a cameo in the recent remake of the original. Tommy is sent off to a halfway house for troubled teens, and he is a reluctant participant in this country getaway that is supposed to help Tommy forget about his horrible past.

This is one of those sequels where it’s not clear if it is Jason who is doing the killings, or someone who is just fascinated with the past murders and wants to do a copycat version of the serial slashings. Actually, if you’re watching carefully, the director Danny Steinmann has a few really big bull’s-eyes around the actual murderer all the way throughout the film. When it’s finally revealed, it’s really no surprise at all. The countdown of murders is particularly fun in this one because the obnoxious teens in the halfway house, as well as the horrible neighbors (a creepy mother and her even creepier son) are all in the firing line for this slasher.

Jason's grave in "Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning."Jason’s grave in “Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning.”

On the DVD, the cast and crew join director and co-screenwriter Danny Steinmann for some hysterical commentary where they talk about how they improvised a few of the more gruesome scenes. Then, there’s the updated “Lost Tales from Camp Blood” as well as “The Crystal Lake Massacres Revisited” and a very creative “making of” documentary. The original theatrical trailer and an update of all of Jason’s stories are also included in this deluxe edition, which also has a cool 3-D box cover with Jason’s hockey mask.

The 1985 movie is remastered in high definition and has a new 5.1 surround-sound mix.

One of the great behind-the-scenes stories on this version of the Jason murders is the fact that the Motion Picture Association of America first demanded that 16 of the scenes in the original cut be edited to get an R rating rather than an X rating (at the time, that is what an NC-17 was called). Because that would drastically limit the release of the movie, it took nine trips to the ratings board before the MPAA agreed to an R rating. Ironically, the director says the original version is tame compared to what would be allowed in today’s climate.

A gruesome scene from "Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning."A gruesome scene from “Friday the 13th, Part V: A New Beginning.”

A few of the chase sequences in this are particularly horrifying, and many of the deaths take place off camera and people stumble across the bodies tacked up to trees or things like that.

Some of the most priceless lines in this over-the-top Jason movie are between the weird next-door-neighbor mother Ethel and her son Junior. She calls him a “dumb dildo” more than once, and at one point she is looking at a chicken while making her stew and says, “I’m gonna chop you into itty bitty little pieces my friend, just like they done to that piggo over at that f—— crazy farm.”

Rated: R
Stars: John Robert Dixon, Bob DeSimone, Curtis Conaway, Corey Feldman, Juliette Cummins, Todd Bryant
Director: Danny Steinmann
Release date: 6/16/09

Studio/Official Site: http://www.fridaythe13thfilms.com/

About Jenny Peters (147 Articles)
Jet Set Jen is the brainchild of Jenny Peters, a longtime freelance journalist whose career has spanned everything considered "Lifestyle" reporting, from movies and celebrities to fashion and fast cars, with plenty of food, wine and travel thrown in too. She currently contributes regularly to USA Today's 10Best.com, AARP.org, New York Magazine, Coast Magazine, Bask Magazine and numerous other newspapers, magazines and websites worldwide. She is a founding and voting member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (www.criticschoice.com), which annually honors the year's top films with the Critics' Choice Awards. Jenny and her crack cadre of reporters at Jet Set Jen offer up opinions, suggestions and insider scoops on the best that the world has to offer, to keep you on the cutting edge of that ever elusive pursuit of life, liberty, happiness – and fun, fun, fun.

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