I have been devouring horror movies at fever pitch during the month of October, including a nostalgic revisit to the Friday the 13th franchise. And while I am totally in camp Part II with it being the best of the series, there is something about Friday the 13th Part III that I am undeniably drawn to. Originally filmed in 3D, it is an incredibly entertaining movie that plays a vital role in the curious evolution of Jason Voorhees. The movie is loaded with plenty of what I call “tricks and treats”; fun observations and things to wonder about while watching it. My personal list of (25) TRICKS AND TREATS is featured below in chronological order.
And in celebration of Friday the 13th Part III’s 3D delights, I have also included a BONUS DRINKING GAME to help make a good time even better! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
1/ It’s clear from the flashback to the finale of Part II (with my #1 Final Girl of the franchise, Amy Steel) that aside from his obvious killing skills, one of Jason’s favourite pastimes might just be interior design, and specifically table décor. One must admire the placement of his mother’s decapitated head as the centerpiece of the table, accompanied not only by her sweater but also some atmospheric soft lighting courtesy of those lit candles.
2/ Still with that flashback sequence, Jason in his overalls looks like an extra from the (old) tv show HEE HAW; not including the axe and the very pre-COVID facemask, that is.
3/ For two people living in cramped quarters, there seems to be way too many items hanging on Harold and Edna’s clothesline. Thank god Harold and Jason wear the same size though. It’s time to kiss those overalls goodbye!
4/ Harold’s rabbit must have some mad jumping skills. How else could it have landed in the produce bin of the store?
5/ A fire extinguisher and toilet have no business being in such proximity to one another.
6/ Misunderstood (read: immediately unlikable) Shelly looks like he might be related to “Son of Sam” killer David Berkowitz.
7/ The beyond-ridiculous amount of smoke coming from within Chris’ van is forgiven once introduced to the dynamic duo responsible for it, Cheech and Chong—er, I mean, Chuck and Chili.
8/ A double dose of curiosity-inducing dialogue from Deb: “That’s what happens when you’re pregnant” and “I’m pregnant, remember?” Is this the first (and only?) time a pregnant character has been featured in the Friday the 13th movies?
9/ This might have been a vastly different movie had Chris run over the old guy sleeping IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD.
10/ “They’re going skinny dipping. And I’m not skinny enough.” Best line of the movie courtesy of the least likable character, Shelly, when asked by Chris why he is not down by the lake with everyone else.
11/ Deb retrieves a towel from the van to go swimming, but why does she also grab a flashlight when it’s daytime?
12/ I can understand a pitchfork and an axe being found in a barn, but a machete, too? (Or does it belong to Jason?)
13/ Chris’ traumatizing prior encounter with Jason is a terrifying tale, but why was her life spared? Did the usual skull-crushing Jason develop a different kind of crush on Chris?
14/ Beware of Chili’s blue cowboy boot necklace. Once you see it, you can’t unsee it.
15/ WTF was Shelly thinking with packing a wetsuit, hockey mask and speargun for the weekend? However, had he not, Jason would have never found his dressed-to-kill signature look, so thanks, Shelly!
16/ It’s not exactly clear why Shelly would have brought his wallet to the dock in the first place, but when Vera accidentally drops it into the water, it’s only a matter seconds before the wallet has floated far from her reach and closer to shore. That must be SOME fast-moving lake current in motion.
17/ I feel like casting the character of Andy was the most challenging for this film. Wanted: Attractive young man who knows how to use a yo-yo, can juggle three pieces of fruit, stand AND walk on his hands for an extended period of time, and not fall out of a hammock while pretending to have sex in it.
18/ Still about Andy, does anyone else get a scandalous teacher/student romance vibe from his relationship with seemingly older expectant mother, Deb, or is it just me?
19/ The issue of Fangoria that Deb is reading contains an article about Tom Savini, who was responsible for the special make-up effects for both the original Friday the 13th (1980) and The Final Chapter (1984), along with uncredited acting roles in those two films!
20/ Handsome Rick gets the “Captain Obvious” award for dialogue, thanks to these keen observations of his throughout the film: “Charged it [car battery] yesterday; must not have taken.” “This wind sure came up.” “No wonder [the door won’t open]. Somebody put this chair there.” “Something IS burning [as smoke fills the kitchen].” “The lights aren’t working either [as a result of nothing happening when the light switch is flicked on and off].”
21/ Jason seems to be at his most human in this film. I can’t recall in any of the other instalments where he makes an actual noise when someone is attacking him. Here, when Chris stabs Jason in his hand and then again later in his leg, I could swear he reacts with something resembling “Ow!”.
22/ Chris in her van, trying to escape from Jason and desperately searching for her “Keys! Keys!” reminded me of Laurie trying to escape from Michael in Halloween (1978): “The keys! Oh, the keys!”
23/ OMG, Chris’ van is equipped with a reserve fuel tank and super cool toggle switch to activate it!
23/ I love how Jason removes his mask for Chris, revealing his face as if to say to her, “Look, it’s me! Remember our quality time together in the forest from two years ago?”
24/ Wait a minute, how did motorcycle gang member Ali manage to survive his earlier beat down from Jason? It’s totally out of character for Jason to not make sure that each of his victims is dead before moving onto the next one. Sloppy work, Mr. Voorhees.
25/ Why isn’t there an ambulance at the end of this movie to transport Final Girl Chris to the hospital? Instead she gets placed into the backseat of a police cruiser, making her look more suspect than lone survivor.
** ADDED BONUS: THE “20 SHOTS OF 3D” FRIDAY THE 13TH PART III DRINKING GAME! **
The rules are simple. Whenever you see one of the following 3D effects in the movie, you either take a sip of your cocktail, swig of your beer or, better still, a shot of your choice!
- OMG, the opening credits of course. Let the gimmicky 3D effects (and drinking) begin!
- Store owner/profits-eater Harold returns the clothes-line pole to its hole in the ground
- Edna (Lady of the Perpetual Curlers) adjusts the bunny ears of the television set for better reception
- A snake from within the (dead) rabbits’ cage strikes out at Harold
- A rat appears from behind a curtain and makes a move towards Edna
- The top of a baseball bat as children play in the street
- Stoner chick Chili offers pot (in the form of a joint) in the van
- The old dude sleeping in the middle of the road proudly displays his prized possession, a human eyeball
- Shelly throws his wallet (the one containing a condom and a $20 bill—coincidence?) to Vera while they are in the convenience store
- Ali, the biker with the dazzling smile, punches through the side of the car window with his wrapped-in-chains fist
- Andy impresses his yo-yo skills upon Deb
- Chain-smoking biker Loco takes a pitchfork to the chest and naturally walks towards the camera
- Andy and Shelly dazzle the ladies with their fruit juggling talents
- Vera is shot in the eye with a speargun
- Pothead’s popcorn popping in a pot (try saying that 5 times fast…and then do another shot)
- The poker being taken out of the fireplace
- The poker then being thrust into stoner chick Chili’s chest
- Jason crushes Rick’s skull; literally an eye-popping experience for Rick
- Chris drops onto Jason from one of the barn’s beams
- Jason, with an axe to the head/mask, reaches out to Chris