Note: The following contains spoilers.
Much of the bad word-of-mouth around A New Beginning stems from the fact that it doesn’t have Jason in it. Despite what people may say, this isn’t an inherent problem (the original film didn’t have Jason as the killer either, and we don’t even hear Jason’s name until the film is almost over), but the reveal of who the new killer is only exacerbates the problems the movie already has. Roger Ebert once called the original Friday the 13th an ugly movie. I don’t really agree with him, but the underlying tone of a slasher flick changes dramatically when it goes from killing horny kids at a summer camp to killing kids who are mentally challenged and/or from broken homes.
I didn’t really want to talk about the ending just because it has been so harped on by other people, but I can’t help it. When the imposter Jason died and his mask came off, I had no idea who it was. The paramedic has maybe a minute of screen time before and has no lines. He’s a non-presence in the movie. And the plot point of how the kid with the chocolate was actually his son so he wanted revenge? This is a dumb retread of the original movie’s revenge plot, only with none of the meat. So a deadbeat dad finds out his son died at a halfway house, and decides to take revenge on the counselors who…by all accounts were totally decent people and wanted nothing but the best for their kids? I suppose he doesn’t know that, but it’s still a weak point to hang the movie on.