Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (Part 4) (1984)
|Year Of Production||1984|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Language Select Then Programme|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Joseph Zito|
Paramount Home Entertainment
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
German Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
English for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Friday The 13th films are known for being turgid, almost unwatchable efforts with hokey effects, poor acting, and sloppy screenwriting, yet they continue to attract a die-hard cult of fans. The reason behind this is as mysterious as it is simple - the sheer incompetence demonstrated by the filmmakers is either not noticed, or used as the basis of comedy. Either way, The Final Chapter, or Part Forty as I like to call it, is another typical effort in the series that earns the "ultimate in recycling" tag that one professional critic so aptly dubbed the whole series.
After the last effort in the series, in which Jason kills several youths in and around a barn, he is shipped off to a morgue. In the archive footage, he is played by Steve Daskawisz, Richard Brooker, and Ari Lehman, while in this new film, he is played by Ted White, who gets no credit (probably at his own request). Naturally, Jason somehow comes alive and escapes despite being shut in a morgue freezer, and this is not the only time where the combined laws of logic and physics are badly defied.
The only plot point worthy of note is that most of the action revolves around the Jarvis family this time - a mother (Joan Freeman), daughter Trish (Kimberly Beck), and son Tommy (Corey Feldman). Tommy is heavily into puppeteering and mechanics, skills which he uses in this film and two other sequels to various ends. The only other two noteworthy characters are twins by the names of Tina (Camilla More) and Terri (Carey More), who are basically there for the audience to ogle and for Jason to use as axe fodder. It's not really revealing anything, considering the number of sequels in the franchise, to say that numerous actors get killed by Jason before he himself is dispatched. The fun, as they say, is in the details.
Overall, once you have seen one Friday The 13th film, you have seen them all, in spite of the attempts during the last two episodes to be somewhat more inventive. If you're a major fan of the series, you'll probably be more interested in the transfer quality, which I will dive into right about now...
Those who have read my assessment of the previous Friday The 13th transfer will know what is coming - this is basically a reasonable transfer that is quite severely hampered by the age of the source materials and the low production values.
The transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, and it is 16x9 Enhanced.
This is a very sharp transfer, with the details that the lighting allows us to see leaping off the screen with a vibrancy that I would have never thought possible from a Friday The 13th film. The shadow detail, however, is still very poor, and this is a significant problem given how much of the film takes place at night. There is no low-level noise, however.
The colours in this film are generally rather muted and subdued - this can be seen in the More sisters' costumes, which were obviously meant to be bright in appearance, but come out looking somewhat faded. However, despite the very subdued look of the colours, there is no visible artefacting in them.
MPEG artefacts were not noticed in this transfer, which is just as well considering how many soundtracks and subtitle streams there are on the disc. There was one really grainy-looking shot in the bathroom at 64:24, but this was a surprising exception to what was mostly a very good transfer. Film-to-video artefacts were still quite visible at times, although there is a lot less in the way of aliasing-prone items in this film, and thus less opportunities for lines to take on a jagged appearance. Film artefacts were found in the usual amount expected for a B-grade slasher flick from the early 1980s, although the artefacts found here weren't too distracting.
The English for the Hearing Impaired subtitles on this disc are very accurate to the spoken dialogue, although there are some points when the text varies a little from the spoken dialogue.
This disc is RSDL formatted, but I was unable to find the layer change.
There are five soundtracks on this DVD, all of them in Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo at a bitrate of 192 kilobits per second.
The first, and default, soundtrack is the original English dialogue, followed by dubs in German, French, Spanish, and Italian. I stuck with the English dialogue.
The dialogue from the principal actors is clear and easy enough to understand, but Jason's dialogue still mainly consists of grunts and growls. There were no discernable problems with audio sync, except during the obligatory slow-motion sequences.
The score music in this film is credited to Harry Manfredini, but it sounds as though it has simply been recycled from the previous three films. Not that this is a big surprise in this franchise, but it does increase the "same-old" feeling one gets when viewing episodes of this franchise.
The surround channels were not used in this soundtrack. Neither was the subwoofer.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu is static, but 16x9 Enhanced.
This one minute and forty-two second theatrical trailer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, 16x9 Enhanced, with Dolby Digital 2.0 sound.
There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 version of this disc misses out on;
While this would normally tip the scales in favour of the local version, the only reason RSDL formatting is even necessary with such a short film as this is the fact that we are getting dozens of language and subtitle streams that we are unlikely to ever use.
Friday The 13th: The Final Chapter (we wish, I hear you cry) is a typical recycled horror plot with little in the way of redeeming features. Fans of blood, gore, and wobbly bits will lap this up, but with superior examples such as Halloween out there, it's hard to recommend any Friday The 13th film to anyone.
The video transfer is very good considering the source materials.
The audio transfer is okay, but nothing special.
There is one extra.
|DVD||Toshiba 2109, using S-Video output|
|Display||Samsung CS-823AMF (80cm). Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.|
|Amplification||Sony STR DE-835|
|Speakers||Yamaha NS-45 Front Speakers, Yamaha NS-90 Rear Speakers, Yamaha NSC-120 Centre Speaker, JBL Digital 10 Active Subwoofer|