If you need to know the back story of this film, then you probably won't want to see Jason X, because James Isaac's sequel takes the high road here and instead of delivering another routine chapter in the saga of the immortal serial killer Jason Voorhees, we get a fast, futuristic, and funny as all hell semi-parody of the Friday the 13th series.
In the year 2010 Jason Voorhees (Hodder) has been confined to the Crystal Lake Research Facility where he is awaiting cryogenic suspension after several attempts to execute him have failed. Overseeing the prisoner/patient is Rowan, a scientist who sees no reason in further studying Jason and is convinced that his only service to mankind lay in his destruction. Jason, of course, has other ideas, and goes on one final killing spree before Rowan manages to get him, and herself, trapped in the cryo-lab.
Flash forward 450 years; A group of Archeology students and their teacher are on a field trip to Earth One (Our planet no longer supports life!) and discover the Crystal Lake facility's two frozen occupants and return them to their ship, the Grendel, where they revive Rowan and dissect Jason. Of course, Jason isn't dead, and he takes his killing spree into the 24th century, hacking his way through sex-crazed teens and space-marines alike!
Jason X is a real treat. The film is such a breath of fresh air for not only the F13 series, but for the entire genre. Isaac manages to balance the elements of a great old-fashioned slasher with wink-nudge-horror comedy, and the results are pure entertainment from the first frame on. The sequence in which Jason is tricked into believing he is back in Crystal Lake circa 1980 is worth the price of admission alone and had me literally doubled over with laughter. You just have to see it to believe it, trust me.
My only complaints are purely technical. The pacing is a little off in places, with some character Manfredini's new score, which is reminiscent of the cheapo-synth vibe of the original Terminator. I know it's meant to sound futuristic, but when compared to the classic score that pops up here and there, it sounds weak and rather cheesy. Finally, while the film is pretty low budget ($14 Million) the bare sets of the Grendel look like a Laser Tag arena. Still, what little money they had is definitely up there on the screen, with lots of nice CGI effects and some very inventive dispatching of Jason's victims (The scientist's head in dry ice is particularly cool!).
So, all minor gripes aside, Jason X is what true horror fans have been waiting for. It's a proper return to the big screen for a beloved horror icon, handled with much love, humor, and most importantly, respect for its target audience.