Friday the 13th Part VII - The New Blood screenshot

Friday the 13th Part VII - The New Blood (1988)

three stars

A girl with telekinesis returns to Crystal Lake, where she relives a traumatic experience from her childhood and encounters Jason Voorhees.


Jason Lives took the Friday the 13th series in a more supernatural direction than the previous movies, but The New Blood takes it to the next level. Not only is Jason Voorhees a zombie-like murderer back from the dead, but Tina, this film's protagonist, has telekinetic powers. Even as it leads the series in less realistic directions, Part VII is exceptionally enjoyable.

As a child, Tina watched her father drown in Crystal Lake. Years later, she returns with her mother and doctor in an attempt to cure her uncontrollable telekinetic outbursts. She inadvertently frees Jason, who has been trapped at the bottom of the lake for years following his last encounter with Tommy Jarvis. The attractive teenagers pair up, the nerdy ones sulk about being unpopular, and Jason slips back into his old habit of picking each of them off one by one.

Friday the 13th Part VII - The New Blood screenshot

The New Blood opens with a recap of Jason's death in The Final Chapter and resurrection in Jason Lives, effectively providing viewers with all the essential information from the six previous films. The idea to pit Jason against Freddy Krueger was considered several times before they faced off in Freddy vs. Jason, including the pre-production period of Part VII. The concept of battling another horror icon may explain Tina's Carrie-like capabilities in this film.

Psychic powers might seem like a strange direction for a Friday the 13th movie in theory, but it works better than it should. Tina struggling to cope with her abilities is a fresh story for the somewhat monotonous series, and her powers add an extra layer to the climactic showdown. Most importantly, these pieces are included in addition to Jason's rising body count, as opposed to de-emphasizing the most popular element that fans want to see.

Kane Hodder's portrayal of Jason is the secret ingredient that makes this movie work. Every move he makes has an intensity that hasn't been seen in the series before, which adds credibility to the character in this and the other three most ridiculous Friday films. Even with an absurd plot and effects shots that are heavily edited by ratings board influence, Hodder's performance makes The New Blood the most memorable Friday.