Waiting For The New Blood Unrated Edition DVD

Back in December I spoke of my quest to obtain the Friday the 13th sequel Deluxe Editions. Because you surely couldn’t sleep at night without a follow-up on that, I’m pleased to report I indeed purchased all of them – some of them being the French Canadian versions, but same content. Against habit, I didn’t whip through them, opting instead to spread them out over the past few months so I could appreciate each over-watched film again, and more importantly savor those exquisite special features put together by His Name Is Jason director Daniel Farrands. Now that my sojourn is over, I’ve taken away one major thing:

My opinion on Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood has completely changed.

I’ve probably watched The New Blood more than any Friday… yet found it the most plodding and derivative of them all. Oxy moronic? I’m a multitasker and like to do fifty things at once, so sometimes it really helps to have a movie in the background that is – how shall I say – reliably bland. As a result, movies of dubious merit get a special concession. For a specific period in my life, TNB fit the bill: Nothing really happens in it. The finale has some fun stunts and pyrotechnics. It’s a dollar store version of The Final Chapter. And all of John Carl Buechler’s talk in Fangoria back in the roaring 80′s of this entry’s deep metaphysics was prime horseshit. But dangit, I loved having that video on repeat, providing a easy visual and aural backdrop to my daily work while not demanding dedicated attention. I loved it, just not in the way most others did.

Now that I have the DVD? Woowee, you’ve watched the deleted scenes, right? If not, check ‘em out below. I actually bypassed the ‘slashed scenes’ section of the disc because I assumed I’d already seen them in the From Crystal Lake To Manhattan boxset and knew no better source had been found in the intervening years – it was just JCB’s old workprint tape being put through the ringer again. Psh. It wasn’t until later on when I decided to give it a play so I could technically say I watched every part of the Deluxe DVDs I paid handsomely for. What I watched was a revelation, plain and simple.

Compare the meager clips of MPAA-censored gore shots off the FCLTM set against the 16 minutes (!) of scenes of the recent DVD! Seeing them in full, and in some case alternate form, really hammered home that the cuts didn’t just remove the ‘money shots’ of the movie, but really depowered Jason as the furious – yes, metaphysical – force of nature both JCB and Kane Hodder intended him to be. Those censored kills turned out to be only part of the losses TNB suffered, with some character development moments and a fun stalker POV scene between Kevin Spirtas and Lar Park-Lincoln that provided a little thematic continuity with Jason Lives and lightened up the drab story. The sloppy way the gore was edited out and the extraction of these interesting ‘people’ moments leads me to believe MPAA weren’t the real villains in this chapter of the saga but once again Paramount. TNB was neutered from the get go – way back in the development stages, but it turns out both screenwriter Daryl Haney and director Buechler really did try to elevate the material during the darkest period of Paramount Picture’s embarrassment over the series’ success.

As much as Paramount have sucked, they also rule for allowing these deluxe editions to happen and making the right choice to get the right people to make them happen. I know many fans won’t be happy with anything less than a restored uncut version – but complaining and petitioning for that is an exercise in futility. The original elements being lost by now and the reality that this is not a cash cow that has can be bled dry like say, Army of Darkness and Halloween (both of which received extended cuts as just one variation between several reissues). The ship has sailed. But here’s the cool thing – the power is now in fans’ hands to do the dirty work themselves. We have all the censored elements now. The New Blood is the most wanted uncut version, for the reason that the cuts so drastically altered the impact of the movie. So it’s astounding that no one has yet taken the footage from the recent DVD and done the movie justice. Well, there has been talk in fan circles and I do already own a fanmade Unrated Edition (cover sleeve pictured up top), but it was constructed pre-Deluxe Edtion so is only half a victory when viewing, you know?

I have some advice to anyone seriously intending on putting it together: first off, it isn’t as simple as treating the project as a puzzle and dropping the slashed scenes into their rightful places – finesse is needed to properly integrate them and editorial sacrifices need to be made: Deletion of some material in the existing film and proper transitioning of scenes. Minor digital cleanup work on the slashed scenes will be vital to correct the contrast so it matches your source copy of the movie. Which brings me to the most important move a fan-ed can make: using a DVD print of the movie will tank the edit completely. The difference in quality is going to be jarring and that is going to mean immersion will be impossible and the cut only enjoyed on a novelty level. The vital key to restoring The New Blood is to use an old, beat up VHS  copy of the movie as that would most match the crappy quality of the slashed scenes. By that, the viewer than has the best chance of being able to appreciate the restored cut as a whole and watch the story the way it was meant to unfold.

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6 Responses to “ Waiting For The New Blood Unrated Edition DVD ”

  1. Those never seen before clips were fantasic!!! But John Carl was right, those scenes, are not gory for todays autiences. Thanks for showing them!!

  2. I really hope that paramount will release the rest of them on blu-ray. Then i will be happy. It bugs me alot to only have the first 3. I would die happy if they could also put together 2 versions of the films on the disc, one with 1080p with commentary and some extras and one version were they clean up some of the deleted footage and put it back in. especially some gore scenes in part 4 and the alternate ending and part 7. Wow the thought of it gives me goose bumbs

  3. Hmmmm…looks like a fun task…;)

  4. Crop out the number code and do a little tweaking to the cut scenes and it would look fine. I wish someone would do this for Part 7, and even The Final Chapter (the censored gore footage is in excellent shape and is not VHS quality). Come on fans, get to it!

  5. I like the cut of your jib, Penhall. PS there is already an excellent uncut fanedit of TFC constructed by Scabboy but the torrent is dead. Still, ask around and you never know.

  6. I’ve never thought to just simply create an uncut VHS version of The New Blood. I always wanted to take it upon myself to make a new cut, but I never thought it would really be possible with the quality contrast. I think I would seriously like to take on this task. Did anyone by chance get to see House of the Devil on its special edition VHS copy? It could be a nostalgic trip like that!

    The question though is, does ANYONE have any idea where I or someone could gain access to to footage sourced directly from the VHS workprint, rather than ripping the already low quality footage from the DVD? If that’s possible, the final product would be even better. I’m just going to go ahead and assume that this footage doesn’t exist without the timecode and subtitles laid in.

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