Being a huge horror movie fan I have always loved any horror icon. However, because Freddy Vs. Jason was the first horror movie that i allowed myself to watch (edited for TV, of course) I fell in love with the title characters. Now that both Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street have had numerous sequels, a crossover film and remakes, it's time to answer the question Freddy Vs. Jason asked: Who would win in a fight, Freddy Krueger or Jason Voorhees?
Wes Craven came up with the idea for A Nightmare on Elm Street when he read about Cambodian men that died during terrifying nightmares. They would wake up screaming and then die, without any explanation. Even the autopsy came back that they just died, there was no particular reason. Craven took the concept and created a reason for it: Freddy Krueger.
Victor Miller decided to ride the success wave of John Carpenter's Halloween. He told Sean S. Cunningham to write a story that would "rip off Halloween". The original was supposed to be a one-time thing, Jason was never supposed to become the killer in sequels, he was simply supposed to be the reason Mrs. Voorhees decided to (SPOILER) kill camp counselors.
Nightmare- I was always pleasantly surprised the the original A Nightmare on Elm Street. In 1984, the special effects weren't what they are today, however, that adds to the charm of this movie. It makes it campy. Even though Freddy's personality doesn't blossom until the sequel, he still is an intriguing character. He doesn't provide much insight on why he's killing these kids, but the audience can watch while the characters try and figure it out. The ending leaves you wondering. It fulfills the typical "cliffhanger, will-there-be-a-sequel" horror movie endings in a fun way, an ending Wes Craven hated, by the way. Heather Langenkamp is a great final girl. She's believable, brave and a little innocent. And I can't forget to mention that this movie features then up-and-coming actor Johnny Depp.
Friday the 13th-I have a hard time talking about the original Friday the 13th while I'm talking about Jason because he wasn't the killer, yet. However, this film is the back story to why Jason does become a unsympathetic, sadistic killer. The kills in this are scarcely show, but that adds to the horror. In 1980, the special effects wouldn't have been able to show the killings and provide the same effect they did. Some killings were shown. For example, the arrow that poked through the neck slowly and created a brilliant bubbling blood pool (created on accident) was a great onscreen murder. You never know who the killer is, or who it even could be and in the end, she is revealed. Once the killer is defeated, the sun comes up and the cops show up. It's an ideal ending, especially when Jason makes his appearance. This movie also featured a future famous actor: Kevin Bacon.
Winner of Round 1-Based on the ideas and the original, the winner goes to:
A Nightmare on Elm Street
Wes Craven took something sacred to everyone: sleep, and made it horrifying. He made nightmares even worse than anyone thought. Freddy Krueger exists due to a few newspaper articles and is a horror icon. The original was just that, original. Freddy as a movie killer, the concept that created him, and the way he killed people were all original. The ending stole from other horror movies by paving the path for the sequel, but that's not the ending that Wes Craven wanted, even the ending was gonna be original (thank goodness it wasn't). Plus, this movie gave us Johnny Depp in his first movie role.
Next week I'll discuss the crossover movie!