I know that many consider Jason X, a campy Alien rip-off the worst movie in the Friday the 13th franchise but I liked it. I’m a simple man, give me a spaceship, a diverse crew, and an alien threat and I’m golden. The creators of this movie clearly knew that this it’s not going to win any awards so they didn’t take themselves seriously. Not five minutes go by before someone makes a witty one-liner or suffers a gruesome death. Female characters wear painfully Y2K clothes showing off their bodies. On the macho side, we only have bulky Peter Mensah as Sgt. Brodski so I think they should’ve included more male studs.
This would bring balance to the force and complete the picture of shlocky sexy space horror. If you want to see just how far this concept can go do check out Supernova. So, this is basically Alien with Jason Voorhees playing the role of a Xenomorph. This sets it apart from all the other Alien clones and gives it a different vibe. This is not quite the fish out of water situation as Jason is quite adaptable and quickly learns how to dispatch of his victims in this new environment. Plus you get the chance to see Kane Hodder playing Jason for the last time.
The special effects are just barely believable but the guns and sets look surprisingly good. I especially liked the futuristic handguns Kay-Em wields towards the end of the movie. She might be the only familiar face among the cast as to keep the budget down they hired mostly unknown Canadian actors. They did a good job though and definitely looked the part. Especially Lexa Doig and we even get a classic David Cronenberg cameo. When it comes to the story, I don’t know what people expected from the 9th sequel to Friday the 13th? Sure, it’s over-the-top crazy but it’s also a lot of fun.
It is the year of our lord Satan 2008 and after a lot of trouble, a team of scientists successfully put Jason Voorhees in a special cryo-chamber. Some 455 years later, Earth has turned into a desolate planet devoid of life. Scavengers make risky landings to collect artifacts in order to sell them later on. And one of those artifacts just happens to be the corpse of the notorious serial killer. Thinking that he’s long dead, they take him aboard their ship. Little did they know that this decision would prove to be fatal.
This movie is definitely a guilty pleasure, something you watch to relax and have some fun. You know it’s going to be quite bad but considering its budget and premise, I think it turned out quite alright. A notch above your average science fiction B movie. If you like the early 2000s aesthetic you will love this one. The next installment in the franchise was Freddy vs. Jason which was just as fun and campy but it’s set on Earth. If you want to see Jason go to space, you will have to stick with this one.
Jason X is set in the year 2455 and this allowed for some pretty cool futuristic gimmicks. For example, this is one of the earlier science fiction movies that feature nanobots. They just call them ants here but they do the same thing as in almost all of the recent movies. I vividly remember being blown away by this movie back when it came out. Especially by that quite memorable liquid nitrogen kill. Finally, this is not a scary movie but something in between science fiction and comedy.
Director: James Isaac
Writers: Todd Farmer, Victor Miller
Cast: Kane Hodder, Lexa Doig, Lisa Ryder, Dov Tiefenbach, Chuck Campbell, Peter Mensah, Dylan Bierk
Fun Facts: The movie was a financial failure at the time of its release. However, in subsequent years it made a lot of money through DVD and BluRay sales making it one of the most successful entries in the whole franchise.