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Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter

Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (also known as Friday the 13th Part IV or Friday the 13th Part IV: The Final Chapter) is a 1984 slasher film. It is the fourth film in the Friday the 13th film series. Though it was billed as “The Final Chapter,” there have been many further sequels in the franchise. The popularity and financial success of the film, which grossed over $32 million, kept Paramount Pictures from retiring the franchise. Because of the finality of this film’s plot and title, the next film, Friday the 13th: A New Beginning, attempted to continue the series with a different killer; due to that film’s critical failure, it was ultimately partially retconned, making The Final Chapter the indirect predecessor to Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives in the series’ canon, in the sense of Jason himself returning at that point in the franchise. Likewise, Tommy Jarvis’s storyline was incorporated into A New Beginning, making a direct connection that picks up from The Final Chapter and then into Jason Lives.


The day after the events of Friday the 13th Part III, police and paramedics are busy cleaning up the mess deformed mass murderer Jason Voorhees left at Higgins Haven, including the defeated hockey-masked killer himself. Once delivered to the Wessex County morgue, it turns out that Jason is still alive. He rises, kills morgue doctor Axel by slicing and breaking his neck and nurse Morgan with a stomach stab, and heads back to Crystal Lake. A group of friends (Paul, Sam, Sara, Doug, Ted, and Jimmy) have rented a house on Crystal Lake. On the way there, the group passes Mrs. Voorhees’ tombstone and a female hitchhiker, after the group drives off the hitchhiker becomes Jason’s next victim, stabbed in the throat while eating a banana. Next to the rental house is the Jarvis home. The group meet Trish and Tommy when they arrive. The next day the group befriends twins Tina and Terri, who live in the area, and they all go skinny dipping at Crystal Point. Trish and Tommy, driving by, stop to see who’s at Crystal Point and the group invites Trish to a party that night. Trish’s car breaks down a bit further along the road, and they are helped by Rob, a hiker with mysterious reasons for visiting Crystal Lake, who soon becomes good friends with Trish and Tommy.

Next door, the kids are enjoying themselves by dancing and listening to music. With four girls and four boys, each now has a date. However conflict ensues as some of the kids switch dates. These conflicts prove to be the least of their troubles as Jason predictably stalks and kills them one by one. Sam goes out skinny-dipping and is impaled from under a raft. When Paul goes out to be with her, he is stabbed in the groin. Terri decides to leave early and is about to get on her bike but has a spear rammed into her back. After sleeping with Tina, Jimmy decides to celebrate with a bottle of wine. While searching for a corkscrew, Jason emerges and impales the corkscrew into Jimmy’s hand and then drives a meat cleaver into his face. Upstairs Tina looks out the window and is grabbed and thrown two stories down landing on the car. While a stoned Ted watches vintage stag films, he gets too close to the projector screen and is stabbed in the head with a kitchen knife though the screen from the other side. After Doug and Sara finish making love in the shower, Jason attacks Doug, crushing his head against the shower tile. He then kills Sara by driving an axe through the front door when she tries to escape.

At the Jarvis house, Trish and Tommy find their mother missing, so Trish goes to Rob for help. Rob explains that he’s seeking revenge for the death of his sister, Sandra Dier (killed by Jason in Part 2). Trish and Rob take Gordon, the Jarvis family dog next door to see what’s going on. Tommy is left at home, and finds Rob’s newspaper articles about Jason. At the house, a frightened Gordon jumps though a second story window. Jason kills Rob in the basement, and Trish flees back to her home intending to warn Tommy. After a long chase in and between the houses, Tommy shaves his head and makes himself up to look like Jason, which is effective in distracting Jason long enough for Trish to be able to attack him with his machete. She drops the machete as Tommy picks it up and swings it at Jason’s head. Jason then falls to the floor, causing the machete to cut further into his head. As he embraces his sister, Tommy sees Jason’s fingers begin to move, loses control and begins hacking Jason repeatedly with the machete, while Trish screams his name. The final scene of the film has Tommy visiting Trish in the hospital, and as they embrace and hope their nightmare is over, with a bizarre shot of Tommy psychotically looking towards the camera.

Alternate ending

An alternate ending to the film, included in the 2009 Deluxe Edition DVD, shows a dream sequence where Trish and Tommy wake up the next morning after killing Jason to the sound of police sirens. Trish sends Tommy to summon the police who have arrived next door. At that point she notices water dripping from the ceiling and goes to investigate. She enters the upstairs bathroom, and finds the body of her mother floating in a tub full of bloody water. Trish lifts her mother out of the tub, prompting Mrs. Jarvis’ eyes to open, revealing them to be solid white and devoid of irses. Jason suddenly appears from behind the bathroom door and prepares to attack Trish. Trish then suddenly wakes up in the hospital in a scene reminiscent of the ending of the first movie. In his commentary, the director says this scene was cut because it interfered with the idea that this would be the final film.


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